Ever since my late high school years, I’ve always wanted to be disciplined, but no matter how hard I worked or what I tried, I just wasn’t. The habits I developed as a kid did not allow for discipline; they allowed for unlimited video games. And in my (10-year) journey to find a way to create better habits, I discovered something fascinating about discipline – it’s not at all what it appears to be.
Hear it Here – https://bit.ly/mindovermatterhollins
01:35 While most people see the difference between discipline and laziness as purely effort and sheer will, the lazy couch potato and the disciplined soldier are not as different as they appear. These two people actually exert close to the same amount of effort. In fact, a lazy individual often exerts more mental effort in failure than a disciplined person exerts in success.
My breakthrough was odd. In my late 20s, I experienced a breakthrough. I didn’t see it coming because it sure didn’t look like I expected it to look.
04:11 Do You Want It Enough, or Is That the Wrong Question?
In my book, Mini Habits for Weight Loss, I posed a question. If people don’t want to lose weight enough, why are they spending $64 billion a year on weight loss products? People like money, and they generally spend it on things that they want and care about. So the narrative that people don’t care about their health enough and simply don’t desire healthy change enough contradicts billions of dollars of spending.
06:50 Mini Habits
It’s simple. A small behavior is nonthreatening to your current lifestyle. It’s the same reason why people who try a cigarette sometimes become chain-smokers. We underestimate the power of a single step because we tend to look at the size of the movement while completely underestimating the power of changing our direction.
I hope this changes the way you view discipline. It’s not a battle of will as much as it is a process of training, strategy, and consistency. Effort matters, of course, and will be often unavoidable, but those who master habit formation will have greater discipline with less effort.
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