Self-Discipline Category Archive

Habits and the Long View

Sunday, June 16th, 2013

If you aren’t satisfied with your life today, yet you continue the same habits that got you here, you’ll still be dissatisfied next year, possibly even more so. Many habits may feel quite satisfying in the moment, but they have no long-term positive impact. They are temporary pleasures or escapes but nothing more. These habits […]

How Obedient Are You?

Tuesday, May 28th, 2013

In the early 1960s, Yale professor Stanley Milgram conducted a serious of famous psychological experiments to measure people’s obedience to authority. A volunteer was instructed by an experimenter to help administer a simple test to a subject in another room. Cards were drawn to determine which of two “volunteers” would play each role, but the […]

5-Year Commitments

Tuesday, November 27th, 2012

People commonly overestimate how far they can get in a year, but grossly underestimate how far they can get in 5 years. If you actually want results, make a 5-year commitment to a particular path, like building an online business, developing your social skills, becoming a world traveler, etc. A lesser commitment is largely pointless. […]

Plodding and Bursting

Monday, October 29th, 2012

Plodding and bursting are two different strategies for getting things done. Understanding these two modes will help you in two ways. First, you’ll be able to identify your own default mode, so you can better take advantage of it. And second, you’ll be able to understand others who prefer your non-dominant mode, so you can […]

All Your Excuse Are Belong to Us

Monday, September 3rd, 2012

I have many friends who are broke and other friends who are very wealthy. When people are broke, their favorite excuse is “I don’t have enough money.” When people are wealthy, their favorite excuse is “I don’t have enough time.” Anyone can come up with an excuse to avoid taking action, and their excuses always […]

Self-Discipline and Social Pressure

Sunday, June 3rd, 2012

A big part of self-discipline comes from social pressure. This is how people in the military can become very disciplined, particularly in special forces. They don’t want to hold their team back, so they have to do their best. Loyalty to their teammates holds them to a higher standard. Loyalty to their country or to […]

“I Don’t Know How” Is Not a Valid Excuse

Monday, April 23rd, 2012

When you say something like this: I wish I could write better, but my writing skills aren’t very good. … many intelligent, self-directed people are actually hearing this: I wish I could write better, but I’m too lazy and undisciplined to do anything about it. I also have low self-esteem, which prevents me from believing […]

Why Logic Always Fails You

Saturday, November 26th, 2011

What part of your life always seems to be on the back burner? Is it a certain relationship? A hobby you’ve always wanted to enjoy? A spiritual pursuit? Do you tell yourself that someday this part of your life will move to the front burner and become a priority? How will that actually happen? Back […]

Creating a Business Plan

Monday, October 10th, 2011

It’s true that you don’t need to create a formal business plan in order to start a business. You can kickstart a business very quickly without having to plan out every detail in advance. That said, there can be tremendous value in planning. Thinking through a business in advance is hard work and requires deep […]

Arbeit Macht Frei

Thursday, September 22nd, 2011

The harder I work, the luckier I get. – Samuel Goldwyn Arbeit Macht FreiĀ is a slogan on a sign above the entrance to the Auschwitz concentration camp in Poland (among other concentration camps used by the Nazis). It roughly translates as, “Work sets you free.” What the Nazis expressed with cruel irony, I say seriously. […]