Every time I skip a workout, procrastinate on an assignment until the last minute, or succumb to the temptation of that pint of ice cream in the freezer, the same thought goes through my head:
“Man, I wish I had more self-discipline…”
You’ve probably been in the same boat before. As students, we always say that we lack self-discipline, and that we want more of it… but what, exactly, is self-discipline?
When I was in the 6th grade, back when the Sony PSP was still the bomb, my mom promised me that she would buy me one if I made the honour roll for my grade.
This meant that I had to have a 95% overall average in all my classes for an entire school year.
Well, I worked hard enough and was on track… Until I hit the mid-term mark.
By this time, I was tired of studying all the time and not having enough time to play… And that Sony PSP seemed like a distant prize.
So I started spending less time studying, and more time on things that mattered more at the moment – like playing Digimon World 2 on my Playstation One.
Needless to say, I never got that Sony PSP.
You’ve probably experienced something similar.
I was a competitive swimmer as a freshman in university.
I would get up at 4:30 am for practice at 5:30 AM. Then I’d bike to the station and take the 1.5-hour train to school, try to stay awake in class, then bus back to the pool in the afternoon for evening practice.
I would clock in about 20 hours of training in total every week.
Somewhere along the way I found the time to study and I ended up finishing my freshman year with a 3.8 GPA.
By my sophomore and junior years, I had retired from swimming so although it would seem like I had more time on my hands, they were disasters by comparison.