All right folks, get ready. It’s time to discuss the desirable, the denied…you know, the “D” word. It can give us an immense amount of satisfaction during the course of our lives. It can even transform us. Yet most of us stick our heads in the sand, feign powerlessness, and remain on our knees. The “D” word, or discipline, is one of the most underrated self-help tools of all time.
If you bring it up in conversation, some people will pull out a list of a bazillion excuses, mitigating circumstances and self-limiting beliefs about why they do not incorporate the “D” word more fully into their lives. They cry “I want to go to the gym, but I don’t have time!” or “I’m dying to get out of this relationship, but he can’t live without me.” These folks are on the “V” team. Victims always have an excuse for the negative events in their lives. There is always something or someone to blame. These crafty and complicated creatures use money, their parents, the tasty donuts in the kitchen, or anything else they can find in their “V” bag of tricks to avoid accountability. Immediate gratification tends to be their focus, not disciplined action seeking long-term results. “Sigh…I just can’t seem to get ahead,” they say. And they like to tell you why (hint: they are never the cause).
Then, there are the powerful and preened players on the “D” Team. To achieve greater levels of success in every area of their lives, they make decisions based on short and long-term goals. If weight loss is their goal, they choose a salad for lunch and skip the drive-thru. If they want to improve their relationships, they avoid complaining about their partners. Instead, they devise a plan of action. They read books on the subject, schedule an appointment with a therapist or spiritual guide, or speak with trusted friends who have good, solid relationship skills. They are aware that they are both responsible and accountable for their thoughts, beliefs, responses, actions and life circumstances. They blame no one and give themselves room to make mistakes and grow. “D” team players yield solid results. “V” team players create a lot of commotion without much movement in the direction they desire. They think that “D” team players are riding high on a streak of luck. But luck has nothing to do with it.
Having been on both teams, I have to say that the “D” team gives you a better bang for your buck. But victory doesn’t come cheap. You must be willing to practice on a daily basis. It involves making conscious choices that serve both you and the rest of humanity. Discipline has given me peace, joy and results that I feel good about. Which team are you playing on? If you’re honest, you’ll know the answer. The good news is that change comes when you commit yourself to being the best person you can be.
“D” team players: keep it up! “V” team players: are you ready to trash your ripped “V” tee and don a dashing “D” jersey that offers you style, growth and, in time, amazing results? I hope so. Because, let me tell you, the payoff is HUGE!
Love and Sunshine Smiles,