Building Discipline

 Woman yoga pose

My word for 2023 is discipline. Cause Lord knows I've been lacking it.

Discipline is tough. It's challenging. It's learning to make sacrifices. It's learning to deny yourself what you want (momentary and temporary pleasure) in exchange for eventually gaining what you need which is more fulfilling and lasting. It's the decision to stay committed and consistent. It's showing up and doing the work needed to accomplish the job.

Here are some areas I need discipline in:

1. Finishing grad school strong: My fourth semester of grad school begins today and I want to practice discipline in my studies. I want to stay focused and turn in all my assignments on time. I want to excel and do well on all my papers and exams. Even if that means I can't go out or binge watch my TV shows or spend hours on YouTube or TikTok (help me).

2. Reaching my fitness goals: Since the pandemic, I have been gaining weight. It's a mixture of working from home full-time, getting older, and pure laziness. I have a weight loss goal I am trying to meet and I know in order to meet it, I must stay committed to working out and eating healthy.

3. Getting control over my finances: I can definitely do better when it comes to my spending. If that means going on spending fasts, cutting up credit cards, and eating at home, then so be it. I know that financial stability is only achieved when a person is disciplined and wise with their money.

Hebrews 12:11 teaches us the importance of discipline:

For the moment all discipline seems painful rather than pleasant, but later it yields the peaceful fruit of righteousness to those who have been trained by it.

Discipline and self-control are not easy things to practice. But what I have learned is that the more difficult the practice is, the more rewarding the outcome is. What kind of outcome do you want to see? Where do you envision yourself on December 31, 2023? How can you train yourself to become the person you want to be?

While discipline is good, I also believe life is all about balance. Do not deprive yourself. And do not be too hard on yourself. Train yourself to do right but also enjoy life. While discipline is a lifelong practice, discipline is meant to get you to a destination where you have mastered the thing you needed to be trained in. Once you have been promoted, you will need to learn new disciplines, however, do not forget to celebrate your feats.

Think about the areas in your life that lacks discipline and self-control. Ask God for His help. And then do your part. It will require sweat, blood, and tears. It will require praying and fasting. It will require you telling yourself no (and meaning it!). It will feel unbearable but, trust me, it will be worth it.

Stay strong in the Lord,