Self-discipline is your willpower to take control and to use self-discipline to control your behavior and thoughts. The more practice you get, the more you will improve your life.
Do the exercises below to help you master self-discipline.
To build self-discipline:
Someone who acts in rage has lost control of their emotions; someone who binge-eats, or deprives themselves of food has lost control; someone who drinks heavily or uses drugs has also lost control. Such a person lacks self-discipline and willpower. To get what you want in life, you must exercise self-discipline. Rather than being restrained, develop the ability to control your thoughts and behavior. Typically, when someone lacks self-discipline, they have impulsive behavior issues. This means the person is inclined to act on sudden urges, and often has a tendency to act on their own desires and urges.
1. Use proper manners. When we use proper manners, it helps us to create socially acceptable interaction skills with others. We show respect to others' needs and to our own. In turn, others respect us. It is harder to be rude and angry with someone if you practice good manners.
2. Practice delaying self-gratification - self-discipline is all about learning new skills that bring forth inner contentment. We also develop patience. What this means is that we gain full control of our emotions. To practice delaying self-gratification we must remember that winning all the time is not in our best interest. When someone strives too hard to win at everything, he or she becomes a loser in the end. We must take control of our emotions by stopping for a short time to consider what we want to say and do.
3. Practice setting up boundaries and balance - when we are not seeking immediate gratification, we can enjoy our life in moderation. This means we need to fit activities and work schedules into the time we have rather than constantly striving to add more work load, or multi-task ourselves into the ground.
4. We need to learn how NOT to resort to expressing anger or going into a rage when things don't go our way, because negative emotions produce negative results, and show we lack self-discipline. It earns the reputation of "hothead" and someone who can't be trusted. Self-discipline means we are in control of our emotions so that we remain calm and can slowly identify the cause of our distress and anger or irritation. We can then address these issues in a more realistic and rational way.
5. Teach yourself inner-focus skills. Take up yoga, sports, martial arts, tai chi, meditation, or similar activity that guides you to build focus skills.
6. Always think before you speak out or act - when a person has self-discipline, they will not react in the heat of the moment, but respond reasonably to the situation at hand with level headedness and politeness. The person will not resort to instant gut reactions or behavior that drive them to react angrily toward others. Thinking before you act is the key to gaining self-discipline.
Technique for eliminating the "Big Ten" Cognitive Distortions
The goal is to confront irrational thoughts and counteract depression, anxiety, stress, and panic attacks.
Description - Consider which of these irrational beliefs apply to you:
1. Self-defeating beliefs, which interfere with your basic drives and goals
2. Extremely rigid and dogmatic beliefs, which lead you to unrealistic preferences and wishes
3. Antisocial beliefs that cause you to destroy your social-group relationships
4. Unrealistic and impractical beliefs that falsely describe reality
5. Contradictory or opposing beliefs that stem from false or fictitious premises
Once you are done with the technique, go over your learning.
Your path to improving your self-esteem, confidence, self-control and self-discipline is only just beginning. In the next article, we will take you through processes of guided relaxation. You will learn how to identify your body responses, and learn to guide yourself to relax.