Will You Embrace Discipline to Achieve Your Goals for 2023?

Discipline is the bridge between goals and accomplishment. Jim Rohn, American entrepreneur

One of my accomplishments in 2022 was meeting my goal of publishing a second book, a historical fiction inspired by the life of my great grandparents who were Nebraska pioneers. 

I wrote the first draft during Covid isolation, spending many enjoyable afternoons on the Nebraska prairie in 1875. Not much discipline needed at this stage and virtually no distractions. Because of Covid, I had to delay my trip to the Sand Hills, the location of most of the book, until the summer of 2021. Spending time in the space was wonderful inspiration (I even stood in a real sod house). 

The real discipline began with the rewrite. This is where the rubber meets the road and an author has to doggedly go back line after line, chapter after chapter and bring the manuscript to life. Then there’s the phase where I had to make sure there were no spelling or grammatical errors. Every book is a labor of love backed by discipline.

Affirmation: I will embrace the discipline in order to achieve my goals.

Coaching questions: What are your goals for 2023? What would you like to accomplish by the end of next year? What discipline will it take to achieve your goal? Is it worth it?

Photo taken by the author in the approximate location of the novel.

How Scary Is It For You To Take A Break?

Sometimes doing nothing makes way for everything. Hiral Nagda, Lifestyle Coach

I find solace in the discipline of routine. At times, I fear that once I step away, I’ll lack the mental fortitude to return. 

Last week, however, with the encouragement of my health coach, I broke away from all of my routines. I left my computer at home when I went on a week-long, out-of-town trip to attend a family wedding and other celebrations. I abandoned my daily food journaling, my gym routine, and my daily practice of writing (blogs, columns, book). I barely cooked. 

I discovered that taking a break from the disciplines of my life caused me to renew the value of their importance. I missed the results I receive from vigorous exercise, eating well, challenging my brain. I enjoyed my time away but, now that I’m home, I’m looking forward to getting back to the structures of my life.

Affirmation: Taking a break gives me perspective.

Coaching questions: What might you gain from taking a break from the routines in your life? What gives you solace in your life? 

The Weight of Regret

We must all suffer from one of two pains: the pain of discipline or the pain of regret. The difference is discipline weighs ounces while regret weighs tons. Jim Rohn, motivational speaker

When I say “no” to a bowl of chips, I think of a version of this quote. I usually say to myself, Eventually discipline will have to intervene—now or 100 pounds from now. Choose wisely. I use this concept with relationship issues as well like choosing (mostly) to not respond to inflaming and, frequently, untrue political posts on Facebook or, more seriously, to tell someone I love that I’m sorry.

I try to keep a “clean slate” with people I care about. It’s been my experience that one never knows when there will no longer be a chance to say “I’m sorry” or “I forgive you.”

Affirmation: I choose discipline.

Coaching questions: Are you in danger of carrying around the weight of regret? What will it take for you to exercise discipline in this matter?


Photo by i yunmai on Unsplash

How to Live a Thousand Lives

A reader lives a thousand lives before he dies. The person who never reads lives only one. George R.R. Martin, author and creator of Game of Thrones

 Today, I challenge you to put down your smart phone, turn off the tv, give the video game controller to your whiny little sister, and pick up a book. Not just any book, a good book. One that has a topic or story line that interests you. A book that tickles your imagination or challenges your thinking. 

Did you know reading improves your concentration? It also improves discipline, memory, and builds self-esteem. It helps relieve stress and makes you more empathetic. You’ll have a better vocabulary and you’ll live longer if you’re a reader. I didn’t make this up. These facts are borne out by research and the World Literacy Foundation. I’m with Groucho Marx who said, “I find television very educating. Every time somebody turns on the set, I go into the other room and read a book.” Way to go, Groucho.

Affirmation: I love to read.

Coaching questions: If you’re not a reader, what keeps you from it? How might reading enrich your life? If you are a reader, how will you share your love of reading with another person? 

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Photo by Ben White on Unsplash