INSPIRING PEOPLE TO LEAD UNCOMMON LIVES
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Fourteen Ways to Improve Your Self-Discipline
Sadly, your natural genius and an occasional burst of hard work are not quite enough to guarantee success in this life. It takes a lot of consistency and determination to get your great ideas recognized. It is ironic, then, that self-discipline is often a feature that the brightest people among us lack the most.
If you are concerned that your lack of self-discipline is holding you back from fulfilling your potential, you can remedy this by trying a range of techniques to sharpen your focus. Self-discipline is a muscle you can exercise and strengthen.
Number 1: Start on Monday. Researchers found that setting a date or event to mark the start of a new regimen can make you more likely to follow through on your goals.
Number 2: Write down your reasons for self-discipline. Affirmations strengthen self-control by focusing on higher values rather than on immediate impulses.
Number 3: Visualize how you will benefit from your own efforts. Studies have shown that your willpower lasts longer if you motivate yourself with positive effects of your self-control.
Number 4: Prepare a plan of what you’ll say and do if temptation arises. This is a proven technique taken from self-regulation strategies. For example, “If someone offers me dessert, I’ll ask for fruit.”
Number 5: Combine something you want to do with something you need to do. A published study from Management Science found this forms good habits by pairing a “should” behavior with a “want” behavior.
Number 6: Hide temptation in hard to reach places. Test have repeatedly shown that hiding candy from view makes you more likely to resist indulging.
Number 7: Set an alarm for bedtime to get a full eight-hours of sleep. Sleep deprivation can impair the way your prefrontal cortex works, which is the part of your brain where self-regulation takes place.
Number 8: Ask friends to keep an eye out for bad habits you fall easily into. One study showed you’re better at self-control when given repeated reminders.
Number 9: Weigh all your options before making a decision. Psychology Today states that making an instant decision can result in poorer choices.
Number 10: Drink hot water, lemon and a tablespoon of honey. Science shows that a fall in willpower can be tied to lower glucose levels.
Number 11: Avoid drinking alcohol. Research shows alcohol can compromise self-discipline by reducing your ability to reflect on the consequences of your actions.
Number 12: Use visual reminders. Data shows that leaving meaningful cues around your home can remind you to stay strong.
Number 13: Surround yourself with self-disciplined people. Research has shown that undisciplined people wishing to improve, gravitate towards people with more self-control – these people can form an effective support group.
Number 14: Make sure your self-discipline is for you and not someone else. Studies show your willpower is depleted when you try to please others instead of focusing on your own goals and desires.
From the article: 14 Ways to Improve Your Self-Discipline by SUCCESS Staff – May 23, 2017 – SUCCESS Magazine
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