How to Develop Discipline

January 4, 2018

 

When attempting to change your lifestyle, developing discipline can be one of the most difficult things to do. External factors such as friends, family members, co-workers, and society can at times place pressure on our lives and act as a distraction. When deviating from your original plan or goal due to distraction, it moves you away from accomplishing what you set out to do. Internal factors such as self-doubt, low self-esteem, and negative thoughts can fill your head with doubt and make you so unmotivated that you are unable to stay focused. The following are steps that will help you develop discipline and keep you on track to your path to success.

 

1.)    Remove temptations from your life as much as possible. During your weight-loss journey, you will want to rid your refrigerator and pantry of unhealthy foods that may tempt you and get you off track. If your couch is calling your name and asking you to be the best couch potato you can be, try taking a walk as soon as you get home from your day. This is also a great time to walk your dog if you have one. The cardio will be appreciated by your heart and your pup.


2.)    Create a food schedule for yourself. Feeling hungry is an uncomfortable feeling and can cause you to overeat. Therefore, meal prepping as well as snack prepping can help you from taking the wrong action against food cravings. Once your body gets into a routine, it will know when to expect food and look forward to the healthy foods.


3.)    Implement effective time management strategies. Schedule breaks and reward yourself. Eating healthy can be fun! Your meal plan can include your favorites but in moderation. If you want something sweet, enjoy a small portion and then take a 15-minute walk. Don’t beat yourself up for enjoying a small reward every now and then. By planning your days out in advance, it can help you identify times for breaks and or meditating. 


4.)    Forgive yourself, if you make a mistake or fall off track, know that your journey is not over. Don’t beat yourself up or fall down a slippery slope of negative thinking. Pick yourself back up and get back on track. Ask yourself, what triggered the behavior and try to process how you may handle yourself when faced with the trigger again. This will be a time for you to build your strength and discipline. 


5.)    Demonstrate gratitude. Take time each week to write in your journal about all of the things that you are thankful for. The time that you spend on being grateful will help prevent you from dwelling on the negative. This is also a great time to recognize yourself for victories, even the small ones.


6.)    Get plenty of sleep. Studies indicate that people who are deprived of the proper amount of sleep on a regular basis are at a greater risk for certain diseases. The lack of sleep has a great impact on our immune system. Avoiding caffeine at least 5 hours prior to bedtime can also assist with improved sleeping. 

 

Starting with the steps outlined above can help you get on track to developing and maintaining self-discipline. Maintaining discipline will be key to achieving your personal weight loss goals and overall life goals. For more ideas on maintaining self-discipline, try “How to Build Self-Discipline-Resist Temptations and reach Your Long-Term Goals.” By: Martin Meadows

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