David Goggins, Jocko Willink or any other "hard-core" man would reply to that with discipline. Although that is true, I firmly believe that discipline is a side-effect or side-product that comes with a correct mindset of strategic repetition of a certain habit.
Friends often ask me how do I maintain discipline and consistency with anything I set out to do. And my response was "just be disciplined", which is a dumb fucking answer now that I think of it. That's why I deep dived into my thinking patterns and wrote down some rules and steps that help me stay consistent.
For this blog, we're going to take a real-life example that I'm currently facing - the habit of daily meditation.
Let's say I'm watching Squid Game and the idea of daily meditation pops up in my head, but today, I really don't feel like it.
Walk Before You Run
The first thing is to not get ahead of ourselves.
Before deciding on a certain habit / activity, ask yourself "Why?":
Start working out 👉 Why? Because I want to lose weight. - Why? Because I want to become healthy physically and mentally, look good and feel good about myself.
Study 👉 Why? To pass this semester. - Why? To get a diploma. - Why? To get a good job - Why? To become financially independent - Why? ⮕ Because I want to travel the world and simultaneously support my current and future family
Read books instead of Netflix 👉 Why? Because books provide greater value - Why? So I learn something new - Why? Because I want to be more knowledgable - Why? One day I'll have to use that knowledge to make a certain decision that could potentially change the outcome of my Life.
Or in my case, meditation 👉 Why? Because I want to keep a clear head and laser focus on the stuff I'm working on - Why? I figured out that I am less productive when my mind is full of problems and thoughts, and this is not the time to be slacking off
Really drill it down. Be like an annoying child who everyone wants to punch, but can't because of something called "Law".
Ask "why" until you go so deep that you get an answer that satisfies you. And that answer may differ from person to person. You have your own values, goals, principles.
If your why is not strong enough, drop the habit and find a new, more meaningful one.
Q/A your own damn ass.
If we take my example of meditation - let's say I'm still binge-watching Squid Game, but I get a thought that I should really start meditating by now.
And I go "ugh why?", think for a second and go through the stuff I talked about above "oh shit, maybe I really should close that Netflix"
Your why has to be good enough to help you remember the purpose and to spark curiosity about whether you should EVEN start a certain task (that happens in a matter of a split second)
I use that rule everywhere. The simple life hack invented by best-selling author Mel Robbins in her book “The 5 Second Rule” requires you to make a decision in five seconds. The rule is easy: When an opportunity arises, don't think about it — just count 5-4-3-2-1 and decide.
Wake up - remember Why? 👉 Use 5-Second Rule - Commit and go for it.
Turn on cold water - remember Why? 👉 Use 5-Second Rule - Commit and go for it.
Think about reading a book - remember Why? 👉 Use 5-Second Rule - Commit and go for it.
My example, I'm watching Squid Game, think about meditating, consider doing it by remembering my "why" and saying "fuck it, 5-4-3-2-1, let's get my goddamn ass up"
The 5-minute rule is a therapy technique for procrastination in which you set a goal of doing whatever it is you would otherwise avoid, but only do it for five minutes. If after five minutes it's so horrible that you have to stop, you are free to do so.
Read a book - remember Why? - Use 5-Second Rule 👉 Commit and go for it, BUT ONLY FOR 5 MINUTES
Workout - remember Why? - Use 5-Second Rule 👉 Commit and go for it, BUT ONLY FOR 5 MINUTES
You get the idea. The hardest part is to actually get your butt up and start the fucking task. But if you somehow go over that burden of laziness, you'll often see yourself doing it for much longer than 5 minutes - but not always. And that's okay.
We as humans have to accept the imperfections that come with our nature of being. We have good days and we have bad days - our job is not to fight ourselves but to observe and strategically approach the situation at hand, which leads to a more engaged, passionate and most importantly - consistent mindset and attitude towards a habit we're building.
REMEMBER YOUR WHY
I convinced myself to meditate, but I do it only for 5 minutes today. And I accept that with no shame or guilt.
Tomorrow I come back and do it for 20minutes.
The day after that I meditate for 7 minutes.
And sometimes I do it for 40 minutes.
I just formed a habit of meditating every day.
Hopefully, you learned something from this blog and found the tips useful. I am posting a blog every 2 weeks - if you have any requests about what I should write next, don't hesitate to contact me on my socials :)
LinkedIn: Edis Babahmetovic
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