Ep. #43 – The First Step Towards Self-Discipline
“Self-reverence, self-knowledge, self-control; these three alone lead one to sovereign power.”
Lord Tennyson – British Poet
In This Episode
You’re going to learn about the first step towards self-discipline, self-examination. You’re going to find out why it’s so important to engage in moments of deep and honest self-examination, because that’s what leads to self-knowledge and self-knowledge will bring us to solid self-discipline and more.
This World is Ruled by Cause and Effect
The results you see all around you are the effect of your previous thoughts and actions. If you take good actions, have good thoughts, you’ll see good results. But what about when our positive actions cause an immediate discomfort? Rest assured, when it comes to improving ourselves, a good action will cause a seemingly negative effect, but, that discomfort is temporary.
I love to use our physical well-being to illustrate truths about our emotional, psychological and spiritual well-being. It seems to be SO much easier for us to relate to the physical events than the emotional ones.
When I head to the gym and lift weights (the cause), if I’ve done it right, the next day I’m going to feel some discomfort (the effect), but over time, I know the effect of that cause will be beneficial.
We must have the self-discipline to pass through that intermediate effect or we will never achieve the final benefit. Too often we try to escape the need for us to do some exercise because we want to avoid both the immediate and intermediate discomfort. The same is true in all the other areas of our life. Fitness, finances, relationships, and more.
True and Honest Self-Examination is Uncomfortable
Let’s continue to use the physical fitness parallel to help illustrate this point. If I go to the gym, throw a couple of 2 1/2 pound weights on a barbell and do some overhead squats, I’m probably not going to have much of an immediate or intermediate (tomorrow) discomfort. But, I’m also not going to have much of a long term benefit.
If I want to have real results I need to put some weights on that barbell that push me to my edge. I need to feel that immediate discomfort which will reassure me that there will be intermediate discomfort and then I will know that I’ve done what it takes to achieve the lasting, long-term benefits.
The same holds true when it comes to self-examination. If you’re just scratching the service and not really looking at yourself honestly, you’re going to get up from all that introspection thinking you’re doing fine. But, that should set off alarm bells in your head.
Don’t Go So Far You Risk Injury
Just as we can push ourselves too far physically, we can do the same emotionally. This is the trick with physical exercise, to push far enough to maximize our gain, but not so far as to take us out of the game for a while, as this will set us back quite a bit.
We can do the same thing emotionally when we beat ourselves up and tear ourselves apart. We must stretch ourselves without breaking ourselves. This means you engage in a healthy approach to self-examination where you don’t let your current condition become your sentence in life. You must look at yourself honestly, knowing that this will lead to you becoming better than ever. In fact, you must see your willingness to engage in honest self-examination as an attribute which trumps any flaws you may discover.
Self-Knowledge Empowers Us to Grow
What if you felt really sick and when you went to your doctor, she met you in the lobby and without asking a question said “here take two of these every morning and you should be good?” You’d think she lost her mind. She doesn’t even know what’s wrong with you, how could she know what to prescribe.
Doctor: “That’s what I gave to Mr. Johnson last week and he’s doing great now.”
You: “But… what worked for him may not work for me!”
Doctor: “Well, we’ll just keep giving you medicine until we figure it out. Somethings gotta work.”
Haha, how many of us have spent years… yes, decades… some, even a lifetime doing exactly this. Because we never take the time to engage in honest self-examination and if we don’t do that, there’s NO way we’re ever going to believe someone elses examination of us.
So we buy this program, attend that seminar, sign up for these courses and nothing works, even though there are tons of testimonials from hundreds who’ve seen their lives changed.
But that’s not you… just like the doctor prescribing the same thing to you as she did to Mr. Johnson, you keep taking the same pills that worked for someone else.
Figure out what needs to be changed, then you can make real progress.
Call To Action
List three areas where you can use some personal growth. Be honest with yourself. Get specific and then lay out how you would like to see yourself in those areas.
Draw your roadmap that will take you to that desired place. You know what you need to change and you most likely know what it will take. Now, you may still be searching for a magic pill or a spell you can use to change it without the pain, but that isn’t how it works. You must go through the pain.. you must lift those weights above your head and you must do it until it feels uncomfortable.
What is your daily action plan to get you to that place?
Find a spotter… I won’t go into too much detail in this episode, but it’s vital you have a spotter because sometimes you need someone to help hold up the weight.
Let’s Discuss This on Facebook
Let’s talk about your self-examination exercise on the Facebook page. You’re going to have some experiences and insight which none of us have and we are relying on you to share so we can all grow. So, join in and share now at Facebook.com/PDesmondAdams.
You have to realize, you’re an amazing person for even wanting to listen to something like this. you’ve clearly made a decision that you’re going to be the best human you can possibly be and I applaud you for that. You could be listening to that zany and wacky morning show on the radio, but you’re not… you’re here, doing what you can do to get better. You’re in the right spot.