“How does one learn how to get self-discipline?”

Submitted Request..

This post is an answer to a submitted question. It aims to provide help and solutions to overcome the issue.

Podcast version: HERE

Quote:  “Are you running your “mind” or is your mind running you?”

Adding to the quote. I talk about the mind a lot in one on one coaching. It’s a fancy way of saying thoughts, or so I’d like to think. There’s no body part called mind. Your brain does produce thousands of thoughts a day, all supported by your conditioning, your opinions, your assumptions, your experiences, your reality.. “Mind”.  When we are on autopilot, and coasting through life we are operating from a manual that’s been created by every single thing we have experienced from how we were raised, culture, religion/or no religion, to movies, tv, things we read or listen to. All logged, filed away in our brain, that our “mind” pulls information from everyday. When we are non conscious, we are not in command of our life, we are in coach on the plane, in that row in front of the bathroom. Far from the controls of the aircraft. 

Submitted Question

“How does one learn how to get self-discipline?

I struggle a lot with continuing or finishing something. For example, exercise. I might start for a few days, maybe even for a couple of weeks, and not continue afterward until months or even a year later. Even something easier like my hobbies, I will not continue. Even if I do want to, I end up talking myself into doing something else, even if that something else is something that I've done countless times and I don't need to do it again.”

My Response if we were in a coaching setting. Although without being able to ask questions, I may assume or use scenarios to fill in the gaps.

I can understand where you’re coming from that’s a tricky one

This is a great example of your "mind" in charge.

That thing exercise or hobby looks exciting and interesting at the start then the shine or the excitement fades, so does the thoughts, and feelings towards it. This is what I call monkey mind, restless energy. The next thing will be fun, exciting and offer me the dopamine, endorphins or adrenaline that your mind craves.

The "mind" or worded differently your thoughts are sabotaging you.

We think, then feel then do/not do.

There's thinking prior to everything we do, or not do.

You may not notice it easily because your level of awareness might be low, super normal and common. If you become super curious, in a conscious way when you're at the time and space to do the exercise or hobby you will notice there's an internal dialog, narrator or voice that's not supporting you in doing the thing.

The brain is super simple it's designed to pull you towards what feels good and familiar.

Feeling good, is simply having a positive powerful thoughts about that activity (exercise or hobby)

Familiarity comes with doing it every day, even if it's in small doses. If you want to accelerate that process, "familiarity" is doing it multiple times a day and often not realistic, with peoples, busy lives.

Thousands if not millions of times a day we think, then feel and do/not do.

The greater level of awareness, consciousness, and understanding you possess about how your brain operates, the more power you have to exert control over your "mind" in a way that benefits you, rather than working against you.

By delving deep into the inner workings of your brain, you gain valuable insights that allow you to harness its potential and direct it towards achieving your goals. It is through this heightened understanding that you can unlock the true potential of your mind and utilize it as a tool for personal growth and success.

Embrace the journey of self-discovery and tap into the vast reservoirs of knowledge that lie within your brain. This typically can't be done alone, it requires someone externally to nudge you in discovering who you really are at your core.

Expand your awareness, expand your consciousness, and expand your ability to shape your own reality.

Take anything you've done today, that you did it.. reflect back, what was the thoughts and feelings that preceded it? Choose something that's not a habitual thing, something that you did out of the ordinary. There were thoughts prior that were in alignment with who you think you are. You were in congruent with your identity, values, morals and principles.

Now look at something you didn't do. Avoided, put off, put to the side, didn't follow through. There were thoughts that pulled you away from doing that thing, and could be as simple as putting away the dishes.

Start small, look at one thing that you say you want to do. Wanting to do something by the way is pretty weak in the realm of the brain. If it's something that's important to you, it's something that is part of who you are, and has great intrinsic value to you well you would just do it. Anyways, look at that one thing, articulate how you want to feel about doing it. Describe how you want to feel while doing it and what it will feel like when it's done, refraining from drifting to the "but's" and the feelings that you don't want to feel (excuses basically). When you practice this in a way that you're able to describe it with 10 or more powerful words or statements you will get into action. It's kinda cool to experience. The tricky part is articulating it, if the words are hard for you, well that's your sign that you've got a thinking habit. good news is your brain is incredibly easy to train and in time, practice, patience, and compassion for yourself you will train your brain to work for you rather than it working against you.

I hope this helps. I wish you all the best. Please share this with anyone you believe would benefit from the insights. Post a comment, I read and reply to them all. Thank you in advance!

If you want to send a question, please send to hello@katherine-hood.com please include: 

  • A coachable question (something that addresses what's in your control, your thoughts, feelings or actions.)
  • And context, explain a situation in the past, currently going through, or worries/concerns of the future, giving me some details on your thoughts and feelings about it. 

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