A year ago while I was learning about spiritual disciplines and silence, I was presented with the idea that for me (a Westernized person) embracing silence is like trying to ignore a tree full of screaming monkeys. With that in mind, I heard on the radio awhile back about a recent book on Willpower. The authors were discussing the necessity of developing habits and how discipline in one area will help form people holistically across the board. For example, discipline in exercise will help form people in such a way that they would perform better in other areas, like writing. Good eating habits leads to development in disciplines of writing. Developing self-control will help make the person better in their life endeavors across the board.
The lessons of the book correlate over to the spiritual side of humanity as well, but more on that in next week’s post. Suffice it to say for now, I can testify that when willpower has been diminished, my life typically slips into a muddy mess. However, if I become a more disciplined person in my life in one area that typically helps in other ways. Delayed gratification and focus are two areas I am trying to currently cultivate. I find that when I have a vision and work towards it with tenacity that I develop happiness and peace. Stuff gets accomplished and I can sleep peacefully that night. The trick is to learn to quiet the tree full of screaming monkeys that so frequently occupy the space between my ears! Silence is hard and being intentional in our own formation is very difficult. Yet, I am confident that it can still be done, depth of character and spiritual transformation is possible.
Being disciplined, that is something that must take root and then I can actually get stuff done. Now, it’s time to develop that habit. Sooner, rather than later.
How do you develop self-discipline in achieving your goals? This might be a good question to consider for your New Year’s Resolutions.