by Arthur Marara
Discipline is the bridge between goals and accomplishments.” [Jim Rohn]. You see you can have all these other great attributes but in the absence of discipline it is virtually impossible for you to achieve your goals.
Peak performers have developed self-discipline to a significant degree. This is the attribute that separates people from unsuccessful people.
It is Mahatma Gandhi who once said and rightly so that, “The difference between what we do and what we are capable of doing, will suffice to solve most of the world’s problems.”
What in essence he was pointing to was peak performance, that is performing at the highest level and also attaining the highest results in everything that you do. I am starting this week a series of articles on what I call the “7 Disciplines of Peak Performance”.
The priority of discipline
“Strive to increase order and discipline in your life. Discipline usually means doing the opposite of what you feel like doing. The easy roads to discipline are setting deadlines; discovering and doing what you do best and what’s important and enjoyable to you; focusing on habits by replacing your bad habits and thought patterns, one-by-one, over time, with good habits and thought patterns”[Dave Kekich].
The difference between successful and unsuccessful people lies in their level of discipline. The difference between goals and accomplishment is discipline. Discipline is an ability to force yourself to do what you do what you are supposed to do even though you do not feel like doing it.
There is no success without pain. Reading a good book, might not be easy, but discipline tells you, you have to do it, going to for a jog might not be easy, but discipline forces you do it for the sake of your health, staying indoors while others are partying every weekend might not be easy, but discipline forces you in so that you can focus on yourself, switching off that television might not be easy, but discipline tells you, you are watching other people work.
Discipline entails going against what is convenient now in order to create what is long lasting in the future.
Discipline births habits
With discipline comes habits. It has been scientifically proven that you need 21 days to develop a new habit. What this means is that you have to commit yourself for the next 21 days to do something repeatedly and then you have a new habit.
Aristotle the Greek Philosopher once said something very profound, “We are what we repeatedly do excellence then is not an act, but a habit.” The interesting words there are, “repeatedly do”.
You are what you repeatedly do. What you repeatedly do can either raise you or bring you down. You can be disciplined to do the wrong thing or you can be disciplined to do the right thing. Many people have become serial liars by simply lying daily about basic things including where they are, what they are doing and even time on the watch. What are you repeatedly doing? Peak performance is also a habit! Do what is easy, and life will be hard on you, do what is hard, life will be easy on you.
For a moment I want you to think, and travel back into your life. If you had been more disciplined in life, where will you be by now? Where would you be now had you been more financially disciplined? The devil is not necessary your problem, indiscipline is. In life you can only go as far as your discipline takes you.
The majority of problems the world is facing today are discipline problems. Financial indiscipline has led many people and companies to bankruptcy, time management issues have cost some people their jobs, and infidelity issues have cost people their marriages and relationships. There are so many areas people have failed to be disciplined. Discipline brings order to your life, your business, your family, your church and any organisation that you may be part of.
Success is not an accident!
“Productivity is never an accident. It is always the result of a commitment to excellence, intelligent planning, and focused effort. [Paul J. Meyer]”.
Peak performance is not an accident, it is a choice. You do not wake up to find yourself and your team peak performers. It’s a conscious decision that you have to make and manage till you get the result that you want.
Success and failure are predictable. Success is not an accident, and it will never be an accident. Failure as well is not an accident, and will never be an accident. Successful people have however arisen from accidents and made history. What this means is that I can look at a business and I will tell you that it is going to succeed or fail. How do you do that, you simply look at the choices and actions they are taking.
Success people do not wait for the climate to improve, they create their own climate. Successful people do not wait for “things to improve”, they rather improve themselves. Peak performance is deliberate, and intentional.
Success is never for a chosen few, it is for the few that choose. Are you making the choice for success in 2020? I do not know what your goals are for 2020, but I am very convinced that you can be a success story if you make the deliberate choice to be successful.
There is no shortcut to success
“There are no shortcuts to any place worth going.”[Beverly Sills]. We live in dangerous times, where people want overnight breakthroughs. Some people go as far as “seeding” for the breakthroughs for overnight success.
The tragedy that will befall any church or any society is the moment that we start to teach and preach “shortcuts” to success. This even seems to be the trend in Zimbabwe as I write now. Look at every poster for a crusade, the selling attractions are related to financial breakthroughs, jobs after deliverance, and marital happiness among other things.
If you also want to start a church, structure it along prosperity lines and you will have crowds of people coming after you. Do you know why? We are a shortcut generation; we want wealth without work, a good life without sacrifice. Some people have been conned of their hard earned cash through pyramid schemes because they wanted returns quickly. THERE IS NO SHORTCUT TO SUCCESS! Be prepared to walk and work the journey.
Success is a journey
Success is not an overnight walk. Many a times we put ourselves under unnecessary pressure by comparing ourselves to people whose source of income we are not aware of. Never admire a person who cannot account for the source of their wealth. Why? You may ask that question. The answer is very simple; there is nothing much to learn. I respect people who can sit down with me and tell me the steps, and the journey that they walked to get to where they are.
There are so many unorthodox ways to make money. Never make money at the expense of your integrity. Success is a journey. Many people want to be successful, but very few people are prepared to walk the journey. Success is a response to laws. If you study the laws of success, and follow them you will be successful regardless of your race, creed, religion and gender. If you want to be successful, commit yourself to studying successful people and do what they did you will be successful.
I will start next week on the first discipline. Do not miss out the next edition of the business weekly.
Arthur Marara is a corporate law attorney, keynote and peak performance speaker, business strategy facilitator commanding the stage with his delightful humour, raw energy, and wealth of life experiences. He is a financial wellness expert and is passionate about addressing the issues of wellness, strategy and personal development. Arthur is the author of the “Personal Development Toolkit”, “Keys to Effective Time Management” among other inspirational books. Follow him on social media, or WhatsApp him on +263718867255 or email [email protected]