Whoever we look up to and aspire to be like, whether it be a family member or someone in the history books, we know they all had at least one thing in common: discipline. They became who we now know them as due to this priceless characteristic.
But truth be told, discipline is a very tough and often draining exercise on the mind.
We all have certain things we want to cut out of our lives. They feel like boulders on our shoulders and are a great hinderance to who we all desperately want to become. For some, it may be the fact that you're not where you want to be physically because of your eating habits. For others, it may be the fact that your grades aren't what you want them to be simply because you game at times when you should be doing homework.
No one is perfect. No matter how disciplined you may find yourself, there will always be something hindering you, and that's ok. Even the greats weren't perfect. No matter how disciplined they were, they often had shortcomings in at least one thing in their lives.
I tell you this because the road to discipline will never be a straight line. It will be an unpaved road with thorns emerging from its cracks, going up and down, side to side, and looping in all directions. So it makes sense that no one can be disciplined in every single aspect of their lives. But hey, it's who we are.
We are, to a certain extent, our perfect imperfections. But this doesn't mean we can't strive to better ourselves. This doesn't mean we just give up. This merely means we are a work in progress.
We will always be a work in progress until we die.
So strive, and let's see together where we can end up if we work on disciplining ourselves, little by little everyday.
The trick is to stay consistent with what you say you are going to do, regardless of the circumstances. I want you to take those circumstances head on, because as Ryan Holiday titled one of his greatest books on Stoicism, "The Obstacle is The Way".
To keep you motivated and push through whatever obstacle you're against, I chose 10 quotes for you that I personally use all the time to keep myself motivated on the path of self-discipline.
Here they are:
1. "With self-discipline, all things are possible. Without it, even the simplest goal can seem like the impossible dream," - Theodore Roosevelt
2. "He is most powerful who has power over himself," - Seneca
3. "There is no luck except where there is discipline," - Irish Proverb
4. "The price of excellence is discipline. The price of mediocrity is disappointment," - William Arthur Ward
5. "We cannot choose our external circumstances, but we can choose how we respond to them," - Epictetus
6. "Motivation gets you going, but discipline keeps you growing," - John C. Maxwell
7. "You have power over your mind, not outside events. Realize this and you will find strength," - Marcus Aurelius
8. "Without self-discipline, success is impossible, period," - Lou Holtz
9. "It is a rough road that leads to the heights of greatness," - Seneca
10. "Discipline is choosing between what you want now, and what you want most," - Abraham Lincoln.
I hope these quotes help you on your journey as much as they continuously help me to this day.
It really is a rough road like Seneca said, but if you keep your mind set on the goal you have, the pain of discipline will be worth it. I promise you.
The pain of discipline is better than the pain of regret.