I once heard someone say that pain is weakness leaving the body. Sounds like a quote you need to hear when you are pushing through the last leg of a run.

It takes discipline to get through those moments of pain. Discipline is doing what you need to do, to get where you really want to be.

You never make advances in your career, get in shape, finish school or raise children effectively without discipline. You might start an attempt at them, but unless you apply some discipline, you will quit when the pain starts.

Discipline says “no” when you need to stay in to finish a paper, it says “yes” to getting up earlier to hit the gym and it says “push on” when times get difficult with your family.

Image courtesy of David Castillo DominiciDigital / Photos.net

Image courtesy of David Castillo Dominici / DigitalPhotos.net

Several years ago I went white water rafting down the Colorado River. It was a great day full of adventure. By the end of the day I couldn’t lift my arms because they were so sore!

The water was moving fast that day, crashing into rocks and rushing down the river. It takes no effort to flow down the river; you could literally get into the raft and hold on!

Similar to life, the easy current won’t ever expect much from you. You can ride the wave of culture, fad and feelings without too much required from you.

Eventually you will hit a rapid, life will get uncomfortable and you might even flip the raft. This could be the wall of dissatisfaction and discontent with the progress in your life.

At that moment you will be faced with a choice to change or ride the easy train.

Discipline is the act of our will that moves us out of the stream and into the direction that will take us to where we want to go.

Discipline requires a choice, a choice to do what might not feel great in the moment, but will move you towards greatness in the end.

Set the alarm, choose a better diet or start a workout routine. In examples like this, we make a choice of the will to move out of the stream that comes naturally to us and we move towards our desired goal.

Wherever you are today, you can start towards where you want to be tomorrow. Next year your life can look completely different than it does now.

It is going to require you to make a decision and act on that decision.

For me, it’s hit the gym more consistently. I know how good it feels when I am in the rhythm of exercising. I know how much more energy I have and how creativity seems to flow easier.

What is it for you?

In what areas of your life to you want or need to apply more discipline to?