Do It Again
This month at KMMA, we have been working the physical quality of speed and the mental attribute of discipline. Developing speed in students’ strikes, kicks and reactions is the relatively easy task; developing discipline in our lives is the more formidable one for all of us. Ironically, and relevant to what I want to talk about, the concept of speed may be one of the distracting elements to the magic of discipline. We move about so fast, distracted by the newest and loudest distraction every day that, if we are not diligent (and dare i say disciplined) about it, we forget to continue the very disciplines that are taking us where we want to go.
I am a philosopher so that introduction may have been a bit heavy. Let me try and take it out of the tower and into the world. We know that certain small disciplines, applied consistently over time, can produce spectacular results. This is true in our fitness, in relationships and certainly in our professional and financial lives. We also know, if we are being honest (and I am) that we don’t always do all the disciplines we should to get what we want. What’s worst, sometimes we do long enough to start getting a little momentum, and then we stop! Why do we do that to ourselves?
Juts this morning, I started back on some disciplines that I had done for a while and then inadvertantly stopped. Namely, I got up at six and did my SAVERS. SAVERS is an acronym I got from a great book called The Miracle Morning. Now I read that book, and started applying the wisdom of the miracle morning routine a long time ago. It served me well for a long time; and then, at some point in time and for who knows what reason, I stopped. Let me first tell you what the SAVERS are and then let’s explore what causes me, and maybe you too, to start and then stop things that are serving us well and what to do about it.
SAVERS stands for Silence, Affirmations, Visualization, Exercise, Reading and Scribing. I do all of the others and then exercise last, on my way to work. So this morning I started with prayer and meditation, affirmations, visualization and then some great reading! Now I am scribing. Then I’ll have a cup of coffee with my wife who will be up soon and then go get my workout and head into a positive and productive day of work. But not before we answer that question. Why did I ever stop my morning rituals in the first place.
For starters, as the late, great philosopher Jim Rohn used to say, those things that are easy to do are also easy not to do. This morning’s opportunity and decision is a great example of that. When I woke up at six, I almost went back to sleep. Why? Because that would have felt good and been easy and, truth is, I am sure that is what I did do several of the times that I didn’t do what I did today- get up and get to work on a discipline that I know serves me well.
The second reality that applies to this lesson is that it’s not always easy at all. Life can get in the way. The example for me is that I often stay at the dojo very late. On evenings when I get home late, it is harder to get to sleep on time and that of course makes it harder to get up on time. I am sure that’s what happened. So I have a few choices if I want to be deliberate about it, and I do. One, I can just make sure that I minimize the time it takes me to “wind down” and get to sleep even if I close and don’t make it home until tenish. The truth is I can still be in bed by 11 if I prioritize that over dinner or whatever else keeps me up when I get hime late at night. Planning ahead can also help ensure I get to bed on time. The truth is I don’t even have to be the one to close most of the time, and I am the one that gets in their first every day.
We all have some kind of choice over what we prioritize and how we plan our lives to make things happen. I know life can be hard and throw all kinds of obstacles our way. It’s when it does that our application of discipline becomes even more important. I know there are single moms working multiple jobs just to make ends meet because someone else isn’t doing their part to help support the child they produced. This could be a single dad as well, so as not to be sexist. The point is, of course, that it is even harder for this person to apply discipline in a way to get what they want. It is harder to exercise, harder to study, harder to read- it’s even harder to do anything. The crazy truth to this hard fact though is that it is even more important for this person to master discipline because only through the application of the disciplines that will help elevate this person out of their current reality can their life be changed. Others can help, but for life to get better one must change their life and, this can only be done by discipline.
That example is only one. Each person has their unique circumstances, hardships, challenges and opportunities. But once one decided and determines what one wants to accomplish in life, then they just need a plan. Once one has a plan, one needs to determine what daily disciplines can move them through that plan to their destination. And then, back to the original premise of this blog, we must do that thing again and again. Every day, do it again. When you just started, do it again. When you’re getting some momentum do it again. When you’re tired and don’t want to, do it again. When you failed and stopped and didn’t do it, do it again! I don’t know who else I am talking to but, even if nobody, I’m talking to me!
You know what you know, and sometimes you know what you don’t know, but it’s what you don’t know that you don’t know that will get you. That’s truth. It’s a principle; and it’s one of the lessons I teach at KMMA. But it’s what we do know, and then fail to act on anyway that will get us even more often. So if you need some help determining what you need to do, get it. I’ll even talk to you if you want. But if you know what you need to do, go do it! That’s what I’m doing! Let’s do it together! And then do it again, and again and again. Let me know what you’re working on, and let us know how we can help.