What do you think of when this word comes to mind, punishment or self-control? I am going to concentrate on the second meaning. Discipline is a mindset. It is taking every thought captive. It is doing the right thing at the right time for the right reasons.
Discipline is saying no to the second helping of Blue Bell ice cream. It is saying no to the first helping if you are overweight. It is making yourself get to work when you want to play. It is not taking shortcuts that are critical to life. It is a vital piece of success.
Undisciplined people are all around us. They are texting while driving (ouch!). They are sleeping too much. They are eating too much. They are pains in the posterior for those of us who want to make something of ourselves.
Principle 1. Nothing great was ever achieved without discipline. If you aspire to win, to make an indelible footprint that will be remembered, be disciplined. Be intentional.
Principle 2. Discipline does not have to be punishment. It can be the vehicle to untold riches, to incredible achievements, to leaving a legacy that is worthwhile. That’s what I’m talking about!
Principle 3. There is a great book called The Purpose Driven Life, by Rick Warren. If you are going to live WITH purpose….you have to live ON purpose. Make sense?
Principle 4. Discipline is by definition focused. It requires a clear mind, and a clear heart. If you have allowed things to clutter your mind, make a conscious effort to stop it. Noise has a way of confusing things. Learn to be still. Learn to be quiet. It is amazing at how focused I am at 3 AM when the dogs are not running around, the TV is off, and the family is asleep.
Would you say you are disciplined or undisciplined? Maybe a better question would be, “What would your spouse or best friend say? Would they say you were disciplined or undisciplined?” Ask them. Ask them if there is any area of your life that you are undisciplined to let you know. You probably already know what area that is, but this may be the thing to help drive it home to you so you will take it seriously and do something about it.
If you need to exercise more, do it. If you need to read your Bible more, do it. If you need to control your tongue, do it. Whatever it is that you are lacking, fix it. In the words of the great prophet, Nike, “Just Do It.”
My hope is that you make the effort to discipline yourself to achieve greatness, not for your own glory, but for the glory of our Creator, and for the impact it will have on mankind. Here is to leaving positive footprints.