Here comes the eleventh absolute principle of destiny fulfillment,
Therefore I do not run like a man running aimlessly; I do not fight like a man beating the air. No, I beat my body and make it my slave so that after I have preached to others, I myself will not be disqualified for the prize. (1 Cor 9:26-27.NIV)
Alain didn’t know that his friend James had purposed in his heart to become an international Basketball referee. Alain had noticed the sudden changes in his friend’s character. The friend had become more composed. He was no more drinking alcoholic drinks. He had also stopped smoking, and had started going to bed at a specific time. What even amazed James the more was that his friend who use to dread reading, was now always seen with a book in hand. When these changes went on for continuous three weeks in James’ life, they became a habit. Eventually, James became the international referee he had dreamed of. In truth, a master proclaims himself by his restrictions.
As it was with James, so it’s with any one aspiring to fulfill his discovered destiny; he must be self-disciplined. There are some things in life that would be good to have; like a promotion, a better boss, or a Degree. Then there are things that you must have, such as food, water, and air. Discipline ranks in the must have category, right beside food, water, and air.
Self-discipline is the ability to be in control of yourself and of situations and not your emotions and situations being in charge of you. It is doing within while you do without. It is being able to focus mentally on your goals; while you do without certain things to reach your goal. You may have to go without sleep, rest, even television watching. Self-discipline means that you make promises to yourself that nothing is going to appeal to you until you fulfill your dream. It is the ability of doing the right thing at the right time. Self-discipline manifests itself in your ability to continue to strengthen your positive qualities needed for success and suppress the negative ones which can be destructive to your vision. Self-discipline entails perseverance, sticking to your purpose and never giving up what you have set out to do. Discipline is the process of training that is designed to produce specific desired patterns of behavior, intended habits, and attitudes that lead to successful performance in various areas of life.
It is only through self-discipline that you will follow the vision that you have announced despite distracting and discouraging circumstances. Self-discipline begins where lip service ends. All other success principles are absolutely in jeopardy without a passionate self-commitment to discipline. Desires, vision, goals, are just aspirations and will hardly come to pass if you don’t manifest serious self-discipline. Only self-discipline can take you to the top. Even with God on our side as Christian, we still need a lot of self-discipline to fulfill our destinies. You need to be disciplined not only because of the devil but mostly because of your flesh. Apostle Paul said, “Therefore I do not run like a man running aimlessly; I do not fight like a man beating the air. No, I beat my body and make it my slave so that after I have preached to others, I myself will not be disqualified for the prize.” (1 Cor 9:26-27).
All champions in all sports will tell you that they could not do it without acute self-discipline. Many talented athletes fail for lack of self-discipline; likewise many talented and gifted children of God fail to fulfill their destiny for lack of self-discipline. Success will not come through short cuts and easy ways. We cannot deliver quality without paying the price in the arena of practice.
Many people with great talents and great vision are unable to develop the discipline that will carry them to the land of their dream, consequently, all their great dreams and talents crash. Don’t be deceived. No matter how great and exciting your destiny is, you have to decide to work for it. You have to sacrifice for it; you have to make some changes in your life. But if you are committed to see your vision come true, you will happily pay that price in self-discipline. Here are my
10 TIPS THAT ENHANCE SELF DISCIPLINE
This is how you can enhance self-discipline:
1. Set priorities
Priorities are simply the tasks that are more important than others, in the sense that these first ones contribute to the fulfillment of your objective. Setting priorities is very important for self-discipline. Clear priorities help bring a single focus by defining your dream and preparing to hit your goal. Without them, it is far too easy to become distracted and get off track. In setting priorities, authors advise us to use a formula called ABC
A= action immediately. These are actions that you should take immediately because they are urgent and contribute to the fulfillment of your plan.
B= before the weekend. These are actions that are not too urgent but still you should do them before the weekend
C=can wait. These are actions that you cannot postpone for later on without having any consequence on the fulfillment of your purpose.
So, every morning you should establish your priorities for the day, they will greatly influence your moves within the day and help you to be self-disciplined as you forgo other activities to follow your priorities.
2. Use a self-plan development
This is a plan of how you will proceed to develop yourself. This will require that you write down the areas of knowledge you need, the behavior patterns you have to change, the improvements you desire in your life and work. You have to keep your plan updated. Each time you have achieved an item on your list, put a star on it. Daily refer to the list for positive reinforcement. You must take the right actions to get the right results. By keeping the right actions for the right reasons, you are more likely to maintain the discipline you need and thereby accomplish what you have been working towards. A new habit can be formed (generally speaking) every 21 days. Develop those Godly habits which will make you fit, ready, and equipped to go through your goals in life.
3. Begin each day with a question
The most appropriate questions for self-discipline are: what am I going to accomplish today? What will lead me a step closer to my greater purpose? When faced with a decision involving your time ask yourself; “does this action substantially help me towards achieving my goals?” The best way to practice self-discipline is to first make a list of the areas where you need to be disciplined, and then make plans to attack those bad habits.
4. Learn from role models
You can inquire from those who are succeeding in a vision similar to yours. Ask them of how they are going about it and learn everything you can from them. Determine the steps they took, their planning procedures, and how they overcame obstacles and setbacks. By identifying one or more people who have discipline in your area, you will see that if others can do it, you can also. The people you list in this section need not be personal acquaintances of yours. You may not know them personally. They may be alive or dead. The point is to cause you to think about specific people who you believe had control in the area in which you want to practice discipline; that is people you will emulate.
5. Use the unpleasant to develop self-discipline
This may sound strange, but it works. Make a list of five necessary but unpleasant jobs you have been putting off. Estimate how long it will take to do each job, and set aside time to complete it. Taking immediate action on unpleasant projects reduces stress and tension and forces you to move ahead with your positive priorities.
6. See success
List the benefits of becoming self-disciplined in this area. Now ask yourself, “What’s in it for me?” You want to consider why you want to develop in this area. By listing the rewards, you will be willing to work harder. You need to feel, smell, taste, see and touch exactly how it will be once you are strong in this area. This step gets you to focus on the benefits of becoming disciplined in this area. You could consider listing the pain of not becoming disciplined here as well.
7. Consider the danger zones
Now, consider where you might fall. You need to give some thought to the danger zones. You know that if you are going to become more disciplined then you will be tempted to fall off the wagon, to be led astray, to procrastinate. If you have been attempting to become more self-disciplined for some time then you know that for you there is a pattern of failure. What happens? You start off strongly then, before you know it, you are doing the very things you said you wouldn’t, or you stopped doing the things you said you would and know you should. List all the potential times, situations and areas that may cause you to fall, and then list how you will handle them. If you know you eat too much, this is a danger zone. By acknowledging it you can plan on how to handle it.
8. Use advanced decision-Making
You cannot win in life if you are controlled by whimsical or situational decision-making. If you are to succeed then you will need to consider in advance how you will live your life. In this step, give some thought to what specific actions you will need to take to accomplish the goal listed down. For example, if you wanted to become more disciplined in the area of exercise, one decision made in advance could be to exercise upon waking for 45 minutes every morning while watching a video workout tape. You decide in advance what you will do. You don’t wait until the morning to see if you “feel” like doing it. You have already decided in advance how you will live your life. Champions do not decide every morning if they “feel” like practicing. No way. They get up to practice every morning and they do so because they have decided in advance that if they would become the world’s champion then they have to practice. They get up because they think the investment was worth it. They do not wait to see if they feel like practicing. You should similarly practice your improvements in advance.
9. Enroll a support team
Just like with concentration, we have to ‘master mind’. This step is one of the most crucial. If you don’t take this step, you are cheating yourself out of the real power behind this system. It is vital for you to finally become the strong and self- disciplined person you know you can be. Resist the temptation to avoid this step because it may be uncomfortable. It will literally change your life. In this step, you enlist the assistance of someone you respect to help you become disciplined in an area. Think of someone whom you respect and someone who will be strong enough to hold you accountable for certain decisions you make about becoming disciplined. Call this person and tell him that you have identified certain areas in which you intend to become more disciplined. Send this person a copy of the worksheet and tell him you would like him to hold you accountable for the actions and decisions on the sheet. This will force you to do what you said you would and know you should. Talk to this person at least once a week. Allow yourself to become accountable to this person. This has transformed the life of many people.
10. Always remember your destiny
Never forget that God wants you to fulfill your destiny. Nothing else has the power to discipline you as this. No other motive can really help you have desire, concentration, set goals, have self-discipline, like your will to fulfill destiny. Discipline is a product of purpose, and goals and destiny. Most people lack discipline in their lives because they have no goals, no sense of destiny. Discipline that flows out of a sense of destiny is rewarding.
Self-discipline is getting the unpleasant task done first to enjoy the gratification more deeply later. “Delayed gratification means working on problems now.” It may be tough. Sure, it will stretch you; but you must agree that for you to really enjoy the pleasure or payoff phase you will work hard first. You forgo now so you can reap later.
God bless you