Self-discipline and willpower aren’t innate human qualities. Rather, they’re traits that can be developed with time and effort, which means your level of self-discipline today doesn’t dictate whether you can achieve your goals tomorrow. Whether you’re trying to give up junk food or save more money, the first step to boosting your self-discipline is to identify what areas need improvement. From there, use these five ways to boost your self-discipline and achieve your goals without giving in to temptations down the road.
1. Set specific and achievable goals
Setting specific and achievable goals is an important first step in boosting self-discipline. What are your specific and achievable goals for the next day, week, month, and year? Achieving them will require self-discipline. Hold yourself accountable for the achievement of your goals.
2. Get rid of distractions
Find a distraction-free workspace that allows you to focus on the task at hand. Create routines for yourself that help you to get rid of distractions, such as getting up early in the morning and going to bed at night on time, or setting specific times during the day when you work and when you don’t work. Establish healthy habits like eating healthily and exercising regularly. Checking your phone less by turning off notifications, deleting social media apps from your phone, or using your phone’s do not disturb feature at certain times of the day. Track what triggers you most to slack off on self-discipline so that you can strategize accordingly in order to overcome it!
3. Create a positive environment
It can be hard to stay disciplined when you live in an environment where everything around you is telling you to stop. The key is to set up an environment that encourages self discipline.
Try these tips:
- Turn off your electronics at night so that the screens don’t distract you from sleep.
- Wake up early enough so that you have time for a healthy breakfast before work or school and during the weekends, take time for exercise.
- Be mindful of the food you eat. As I mentioned earlier, it’s important not to overeat but also not to restrict yourself too much either.
4. Reward yourself
You might be surprised that one of the best ways to boost your self-discipline is by rewarding yourself. Set up a reward system and give yourself something as you achieve personal goals. This can take many forms, but the important thing is that it should be something you really want, or are looking forward to.
5. Stay motivated
Try to take on one task at a time, then reward yourself when you finish it (e.g., go for a walk). This will help you to stay motivated. Don’t make plans too far ahead, as this will lead to procrastination. When faced with an unpleasant chore or challenging assignment, put off tackling it until after you’ve accomplished something that is easy or fun.
When you’re working on your self-discipline, write down the goals that matter most to you and post them somewhere you’ll see them every day. Seeing your goals will remind you of what’s at stake and keep you motivated.
Keep it simple: I commit to going for a walk each morning before breakfast. I commit to going to bed by 11pm Sunday through Thursday nights. I commit to doing 10 minutes of reading each night before bedtime. I commit to eating at least three servings of vegetables with lunch and dinner.