Building Self-Discipline in 5 Simple Ways

Have you ever procrastinated at work so long that you didn’t get proper sleep? Have you ever eaten junk foods even if you’re on a diet? Both of these actions show that you’re not self disciplined and need to improve it to lead you to a happy and healthier life.

Here, we are sharing with you five tips in order to be disciplined in your day-to-day life.

1. Change your environment

When you start to change your environment, it would be easier to get away from the habits that are unconsciously ingrained in your mind. Most of our actions in our lives are instinctive so if you are in the same environment, it would be much difficult to tame or change yourself.

Self-Discipline

If your bad habit is procrastinating by binge watching TV, playing video games for too long, or compulsively watching YouTube videos, then try walking yourself in the room. If you could walk or jog outside to get much fresh air, then it’s so much better.

Getting away from the usual environment like going to Starbucks does not make your mind trigger the habit loop that is developed in your basement, for instance. Go places and do something productive.

2. Remove bad habits first then replace them with good ones

Based on personal experience, it is almost impossible to add good habits on top of bad habits. You have to remove bad habits first and then replace them with better habits.

Going back to the example of watching too many YouTube videos when you know that you have many things to do instead of having a meditation to the mix on top of that, which you will definitely procrastinate on, you can go on from watching YouTube videos to having nothing to do. From that bad habit, you would probably feel the urge to do something so you will find something to do and eventually replace the bad habit.

If you spend two hours a day on social media, limit your time on Facebook, YouTube and Instagram to one hour a day using a Chrome extension and stay focused. And then replace the other hour with working out. This will provide a better return with a better body, better looks, and at the same time with the same reward as watching entertaining videos online.

3. Schedule breaks

To stay productive on your new mission on being more disciplined, you cannot expect to work for hours on something without work quality suffering, or you would give up on exhaustion. Overtime, you’ll become better at this, but you should schedule breaks no matter what.

Taking breaks with self-discipline
123RF

For instance, if you’re a student and you aim at finishing homework at the library, and say you have five homework–for Math, Science, History, Literature, and English language. Each time you finish an assignment, it would take you twenty minutes, so take a five-minute break. This way, you get to enjoy your breaks without having the feeling of annoyance that you haven’t done anything in two hours. You also get to work on faster than just trying to walk through it all in one shot.

4. Schedule your days

Scheduling and setting goals for yourself is a very important aspect in achieving anything. There’s a very solid analogy that if you want to go to Ilocos Norte from Manila, either you use the GPS or any location app and find the most efficient plan and head there in a few hours. You could also be the person who drives yourself randomly hoping that you could get yourself to your destination which would probably take much longer time. That’s what clarity is.

You should be able to know where your goals are, also known as your purpose. And to be able to mop it out into short term goals, take it down to each day of the week. If you don’t have a tacked plan for each day, you would probably have a random burst of motivation which would get you a little bit of work and get tired.

When there is a plan, there is no excuse. No need for will power. You just have to do what you plan for yourself.

5. Enjoy the process

This is the last step in growing to be disciplined. Most people go through their day-to-day lives doing something that they do not really enjoy. They do it for the sole purpose of maintaining their standard of living to a paycheck. It may even be a large paycheck. However, if you do not enjoy what you are doing while you are doing it, then you will never achieve mastery and you will never be truly disciplined.

It’s not that when you go into a field that you find fulfilling, every single moment will bring you ecstasy. If you stick into something that makes you find a definite interest in, you enjoy the challenges that come along with it, the learning curve, the slow progression, as well as the victories.

Don’t just look at the end goal because it is simply saying that you would pass by a two-year goal. It is also basically saying that you would want to end your life sooner. Enjoy the moment because that’s all you have.


Motivation is fleeting which means that it will leave anytime. You will not always have it but you can build self-discipline. In order to build it, you should change your environment, remove your bad habits and replace them with good ones, schedule your breaks, schedule your days, and you must enjoy the process.

Vinz Eusala

A travel enthusiast, adventurer, wander thinker, blogger, and photographer wannabe who wakes up every morning and thinks everyday above ground is a great day. Offer him pizza and milk tea and you're friends for life.