It is striking that, for some, even the idea screams “Too hard! Too painful!” But where would any big hairy goal be if we didn’t embody those traits? How about the process of getting ready in the morning at times?
Studies show that people with self-discipline and perseverance are more productive, more creative, happier, and feel more satisfied with their lives. You probably don’t need to be convinced of the benefits of self-control and stick-to-itiveness (achieving long term goals, decreased anxiety, increased resilience, better relationships), so how can we exercise these muscles?
- Practice. Start small, keep it simple. Even Florence Griffith-Joyner (many still consider her to be the fastest woman in history) took baby steps in the beginning.
- Know yourself – your strengths, your weaknesses, your temptations, how you are built to succeed – then set clear goals and plan accordingly. Remember to decide how you are measuring your progress, and always have a back-up plan.
- Take care of yourself! Always. You can’t be your best if you’re always tired, or hungry for some nutritious food. This automatically stacks the deck in your favor. Reward yourself. Forgive yourself when you fail, and start over.
Here’s something to give you an extra boost: neuro-scientific research shows that higher levels of dopamine can be used as a key motivating force to help us keep disciplined and tenacious. Nature created an internal reward system that reinforces lifestyle habits necessary for our existence, thus, dopamine floods your body and mind with a rush of satisfaction when you achieve something that contributes to your survival – or that of your business.
Want more of this “reward molecule”? Set deadlines and complete goals daily. The real treasure here is that these can be mini-achievements, so break down those big goals into manageable bits (see #SalamiMethod) and still reap the benefit. If you do not accomplish something every day your dopamine reserves will diminish…a helpful hint: playing word games and solving puzzles stimulates the brain AND keeps the dopamine pumping.
Lastly, if you feel you need it, get some help! According to a study by Stanford University, the amount of willpower a person has is determined by their beliefs. If you can remove these subconscious blocks, you will be ahead of the game – invest in a coach/mentor, join us daily on Facebook (https://www.facebook.com/pg/dawncady.mindsetcoach/posts/) or you may even find the Neural Alignment Method® significantly beneficial (http://go.dawncady.com/the-neural-alignment-method)