One of the most regular conversations I have with athletes and those that are trying to increase their productivity in a work environment or in their personal life is around the balance of relying on motivation or discipline to get things done. Often, we find ourselves waiting for motivation to give us the kickstart that we want and can be left wondering where it is!!
Some thoughts on motivation….
Motivation is an internal process. It is the drive or need that desires a change in the self or the environment around us. When we have that drive, the energy to do the tasks we need to will come almost effortlessly and we become focused on the solutions and working our way towards our goals.
When we are motivated - we are energised, persistent, we move, and we take action.
So where does discipline come in?
Discipline is the conscious control that helps us move towards outcomes or overcome challenges. The focus here is for us to ensure we aren’t relying on our ‘autopilot’ and we engage in a thought process to help us make a choice in the moment.
When we are disciplined - we are thinking about the choices we are making and how they will help us achieve our goals.
Your next steps:
Identify a goal that you are working towards.
Motivation - Why have you set that goal? Why is it important to you?
Identify obstacles to reaching your goal.
Discipline - Now focus on the small, regular habits that will help you achieve your goal.
Motivation is what we need to be inspired to make a change - this can come from within us (intrinsic) or external factors (extrinsic).
Discipline refers to training yourself to behave and work in a controlled and regular way, or essentially, building healthy habits.
In order to make our changes last in the long run, we need to progress from initial changes based on motivation, into habits based on discipline.
We will all have days when motivation and discipline are nowhere to be seen!! That is ok. Focus on resetting and building your habits back over the next few days.