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It's Not Discipline

One day a star athlete was talking with his coach about his spiritual life. The athlete was beating himself up because he did not have the discipline to read his Bible.

His coach looked at him and said "Your issue isn't discipline. Just look at you!" This athlete was a 3 year starter for his team, in top physical shape, and growing in his game every day. No days off.

His coach continued "There is no way you would look like that and be the player you are without discipline." He paused and stated the truth that applied to this athlete and to most of us reading this post. "What you are missing is commitment".

I happened to be in the company of this conversation and almost fell out of my chair.

Isn't this so true! Most of us are disciplined. We pay our bills on time. We show up to work every day. We get good grades in school. We are disciplined.

But we are the same people that eat a half a pint of ice cream and don't quiiiiiiiiiite make it to the gym. The issue isn't our discipline. It's our commitment. Like our athlete friend, he is committed to his sport. He is committed to being the best player he can be for himself and his team. He is committed to being a great athlete.

Commitment activates Discipline

Because he is committed, he disciplines himself to put in extra reps after practice even when he is tired. He disciplines himself to eat the grilled chicken sandwich instead of the chicken fingers. He disciplines himself to be encouraging when he wants to be angry. If he were not committed to himself and his sport, it is very unlikely he would be disciplined.

I am thinking you (and me) are the same way. You are disciplined in some areas of your life but not in others. I want to encourage you to stop trying to solve the wrong problem. The problem isn't your discipline.... it's your commitment.

Think about that thing you say that you really want. Fit body, closer relationship with God, successful business, integrity, work/life balance. That area of your life that you want to be better and richer but are struggling to make progress. That area you've been blaming on discipline. Ask yourself ....

Am I Really Committed?

If you want to know the answer to that question, answer these questions.

  • Have I made a serious, look-myself-in-the-mirror promise to myself?

  • Am I ready to invest fully in it?

  • Have I acknowledged, accepted, and am willing to sacrifice to get it?

  • Will I keep pushing myself when (not if) it gets hard and uncomfortable?

  • What actions am I taking right now that give me evidence?

If you can affirmatively and definitively answer those questions, you are committed and now can activate that powerful force called discipline you so successfully apply in other areas of life!

Do you just want it .... or are you COMMITTED?

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