by Aminat Bello
Humans need basic items such as food, water and shelter to survive. In a similar vein, self-discipline is required to attain personal success, achievement, or goal. Self-discipline is an essential attribute required to achieve any type of personal excellence, educational excellence, virtuosity in the arts, or otherwise outstanding performance.
What is self-discipline?
Self-discipline is the ability to make yourself do the right things even when you do not want to.e.g. you need a lot of self-discipline when you’re doing research work on your own. It is the ability to control one’s impulses, emotions, desires and behaviour. It is being able to turn down immediate pleasure and instant gratification in favour of gaining the long-term satisfaction and fulfilment to achieve higher and more meaningful goals.
To possess self-discipline is to be able to make the decisions, take the actions, and execute your game plan regardless of the obstacles, discomfort, or difficulties, that may come your way.
How to develop self-discipline
Start with baby steps: It takes time to develop self-discipline. The more you train and build it, the stronger you become. In an exercise, if you try to do too much at once, you could injure yourself and have a setback.Likewise in studying, start gradually and be consistent. Reading up your notes after returning from school every day will go long way in contributing to your final success.
Learn what motivates you and what your bad triggers are: You can begin by learning about yourself! Sometimes it is very difficult to fight off urges and cravings, so know the areas where your resistance is low and how to avoid those situations.
Make certain behaviours a routine: Once you have decided what’s important to you and which goal to strive for, establish a daily routine that will help you achieve them.
Practice self-denial: Learn to say no to some of your feelings, impulses and urges. Train yourself to do what you know to be right, even if you don’t feel like doing it. Skip dessert some evenings. Limit your TV watching. Resist the urge to yell at someone who has irritated you. Stop and think before you act. Think about consequences. When you practice self-restraint it helps you develop the habit of keeping other things under control.
Get inspiration from those you admire: For example, Michael Jordan has always maintained that his greatness as a basketball player came as much from his willingness to work hard at his craft, as it did his talent. It was his desire through discipline and focus that made him one of the best basketball players ever. If it worked for him, it could certainly work for the rest of us.
visualize the rewards: There is nothing more gratifying than accomplishing your goals. Practice the technique that high achievers do. Project yourself in the future. visualize your desired outcome. Feel how rewarding it is and the countless benefits you will enjoy. Remind yourself what it takes to get there.
The Benefits of self-discipline
It helps build self-confidence. You accomplish more and are therefore more productive.You are able to maintain a higher tolerance for frustration, obstacles and negative emotions.Allows you to obtain better health, better finances and a good work ethic.You are able to reach your most difficult goals more efficiently.The more disciplined you become, the easier life gets.
If we are to be masters of our own destiny, we must develop self-discipline and self-control. By focusing on long-term benefits instead of short-term discomfort, we can encourage ourselves to develop of self-discipline. Ultimately our health and happiness depend on it.

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