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So that’s a bold headline right? I mean, can discipline really save lives? Focus for a moment on someone recent in your mind. It can good or bad, but for the sake of this example try to think of someone with emotion tied to it. It could be someone graduating from college or an argument you had with a sibling which may jeopardize the relationship, both which prompt other questions. “Does him/her having a degree make them better than me?” or perhaps “I didn’t anything wrong, should I just cut ties with my sibling?”
Most often the answer and power to fix a given situation comes down to discipline. Does having a degree really make anyone better than another? Of course not, but it does show an amount of discipline. If something someone did or said to you that makes you question the relationship you have with that person, it’s often due to underlying ongoing behaviors. Maybe the offending person is habitually negative and never has anything nice to say to you, or perhaps it is yourself that begins each interaction with this person with negative energy, not giving it achance to be a positive experience. Whatever the case, once you can pinpoint the underlying behaviors that need to be changed to fix the issue, it becomes a matter of discipline to correct.
We are what our habits are. Other people are what their habits are. If you habitually start each morning with 10 minutes to get ready, immediately putting yourself in a state of stress rushing around to get work, because you didn’t get enough sleep, so you drink 3 cups of coffee to compensate which stresses your adrenals, compounding the stress you already have, finally to go through a work day and deal with things that come up throughout – hopefully it’s painfully obvious what is wrong with this picture.
If one were to take a more disciplined approach to how they end and start their next day, you can see how it would make a world of difference. Going to bed at a reasonable hour, to prepare yourself to awake with plenty of time to get ready in the morning. Leave the house 10 minutes before really need to, incase you hit traffic, you know most likely you still won’t be late. You arrive at work and skip on the coffee today (Which is hard, because I definitely love coffee), ready to take on the work day with no added stress. This is not to mention the sense of accomplishment that comes along with following through on a decision you made, that ultimately benefits you as a person. (Read more about the benefits of discipline in having a Morning Routine)
Which one of these scenarios do you think yields a happier person? Who do you think might snap at their colleagues during work? They’ve done lots of studies regarding what makes people truly happy and most boil it down to two things:
Having a strong social circle is very important, but its your habits of how you interact with that circle that dictate how good those relationships are. If you don’t have a social circle, you might need to evaluate the your habits of how you interact with others and improve upon them. If you’re looking for specifics on what you could improve, a great book on this topic is by Napoleon Hill, How to Win Friends & Influence People.
Decision making was kind of surprising to me at first and then I really thought about it. Why is it that people love to buy and go shopping? Why does it feel so damn good when I wakeup early in the morning, knockout a workout before I do go to work. This also helps lead to self fulfillment, really thinking about what is most important to you in your life and what would make it better, and setting goals to attain and/or improve these things.
“Discipline your children while there is hope. Otherwise you will ruin their lives.” Proverbs 19:18
It all comes back to making an decision, and having the discipline to follow through with it. Discipline is like a muscle, the more you do it, the easier it will be to become disciplined in other areas of your life. The benefits of discipline are many. Start with small things, make a decision to walk the dog everyday, only drink once a week or something you feel would improve yourself. Then gradually add to it. We’re only human, so don’t think that it you mess up once, that you’re a terrible person and there’s no hope for you. Make sure you get back on the horse, and get back at it.
Discipline really can not only save your life, but make it so much better – if you let it.