Discipline — The Key To Happiness & Freedom
It’s commonly thought that freedom and discipline are mutually exclusive. However, this isn’t actually the case. In fact, both intertwine and align with one another because without self-discipline one could not achieve true freedom.
Through discipline comes freedom. — Aristotle
At first glance, this may seem counterintuitive, especially if you believe freedom means doing what you want without constraint. However, this understanding is fundamentally flawed because whether you want freedom in your time, health or finances, self-discipline is required to achieve that.
Of course, as with any change, taking actions that require discipline is initially hard. It requires delayed gratification and doing difficult tasks. Yet, this doesn’t mean one should shy away from it. If anything, we should lean into it more to experience the freedom that self-discipline brings.
What’s more, the better you get at exercising discipline in one area of your life, the easier it is to transfer those skills to other areas. Because, had you told me five years ago that I’d choose sobriety, prioritise my health and actively save to invest, I would have thought you were crazy. Yet, all of these habits came about from the decision to improve my self-discipline.
Having lived both with and without self-discipline, I’m certain life with it is far more fulfilling. Because the remarkable thing about self-discipline is that the more consistent you are, the better your life gets. Whether it’s having freedom of time from following a routine, improved health from exercise and proper nutrition, or an increase in your finances from budgeting and being smart with your money. In either case, it’s discipline that brings the results that many seek.
And while at first, discipline may seem like your worst enemy, it really is your best friend. It is the one thing that will always want the best for you, and will continuously provide you with strength, happiness and freedom. Regardless of how it feels at first, know that discipline will take care of you like nothing else can — that is if you let it. Because the difference between the disciplined person and the one that isn’t is that one chose to be and the other didn’t.
At the end of the day, the choice is yours — you can choose to be disciplined or not to be. But in choosing to exercise self-discipline your life will be all the better for it. Plus, the more consistent you are, the sooner it becomes second nature. Where those same actions that were initially difficult become easy and enjoyable. And at the point where it’s pleasant and easy to do, you usually find yourself wondering how you ever did things differently.
P.s. This is the first instalment of a three-part series on the benefits of self-discipline. I’ll be sharing ‘Part Two’ shortly where we’ll explore concepts to focus on to build your discipline muscle. Be sure to beck back in for it, or sign up to be notified when it’s published.