We have been wasted at a very young age with wrong images of romance and emotions with fairy tales. And when growing up, we have been loaded with too much romantic movies where following your emotions can solve any problem on earth.
This culture that we have been educated on is so wrong that our generation became emotionally lost, not knowing how and when to express their emotions.
Emotions aren’t bad, but letting them decide your life is! To control your emotions the way it should be, without being emotionally dead, you need to work on your self-discipline.
According to the Online Cambridge Dictionary, Self-Discipline is “the ability to make yourself do things you know you should do even when you do not want to”.
On a practical way, it’s the ability of taking decisions with logical thinking and rational reasoning, rather than emotions or temptations.
Self-discipline is a way of living that leads to long term happiness. Either on work, eating habits, relationships, budget management… it gives you the ultimate power to plan your life and have control of everything surrounding you on a smart way.
If it was only for your emotions, you will certainly be eating pizza everyday (if you currently do so, then you really have some serious self-discipline issues). But when you follow your wisdom and logic, you are aware that it isn’t a good long term way of eating, and you should obviously try other healthy alternatives. Same goes for every aspect of our lives. We are tempted to take the easiest path, the nicer looking way rather than jump out of our comfort zone. We keep making excuses to things we know aren’t best choices but we are emotionally weak to change.
I have always known that following emotions isn’t the best way to take decision. I have been raised that way. And from a really young age, I learned how to shut down my emotions when they distract me from taking the right decision.
But for some people, their emotions and temptations have been too much involved on their lives, that they don’t even know how to separate every entity from one another when it comes to decision making. For those ones, it’s time to be self-disciplined. It’s never too late to cope up with it, and it’s a skill that can be developed with dedication and practice.
First thing to do, is to be aware of you lack of self-discipline. Otherwise, you can’t change. Every time you have a decision to make, don’t rush to the easiest one, but take your time and try to remember that obvious options aren’t always the right ones.
Then, have an overview on all what’s happening in your life. Write down your schedules, your habits and all what you do. Then on another sheet, write down all what you would like to change, achieve or better. Then match every goal with its category. You will have then an overview of what you need to work on.
And now comes the serious part of self-discipline: for a goal at a time, try to make the right and realistic decision, without your emotions involved. The right decision could seem hard or not really appealing, but since it’s the logically suitable one for your case, stick to it no matter what. Don’t let yourself have excuses!
One of the mistakes that people do, is trying to change radically and stick to a self-disciplined life style on every aspect of their lives in one take. This can be very overwhelming, discouraging, leading to let down everything and coming back to the initial comfort zone. The journey to self-discipline take a lot of time and should be done gradually, so that you can easily stick to it.
Another thing that people tend to do, and which I just have been aware of few months ago, is that sometimes, we tend to be very self-disciplined, too strict on ourselves. Sometimes (very rare times), we need to follow our hearts. And to do so, we need to keep a balance between emotions and reason, and know when we can have an exception.