…even if you don’t feel like doing it. Many times in our life there is something we know we have to do, but we don’t feel like doing it. I remember the time back when I was in school. I thought that the best possible situation, my real goal would be if I had no more stress. If there were no more things which I had to do. I thought that: “When there is nothing I have to do, then I am going to be free”. Over the years I realised that this was an illusion, it is not true. I discovered that what actually matters is is that our have to’s and must’s are such, that we ourselves decide on them. They are things where we make a conscious decision, from our own volition and say: “I want to achieve this goal, I want to do this, this is important to me. It is a must for me to do what is necessary to get there”. Once we take control and are no longer a victim, like I did back when I went to school: “The outside is pressuring me, why do I have to work and study, why do I have to do this… I don’t want to do this”. There is a lot of resistance with that attitude.
On the other hand we can take charge and say: “I’m here now. I want to do the best with my life. I want to have a good quality of life. I want to take care of my family and the people that are important to me. I want to impact the lives of other people positively and… in order to do that, there are certain things which I have got to do. I am going to do them. I am committed to doing them. I make them a must”.
For me a must is getting up early in the morning. I usually get up before 6 o’clock and on many days before 5 o’clock. Why? Because I simply want to use that quiet time in the morning to meditate, contemplate, exercise, read or to work. Once my son wakes up at about 7 o’clock then it is not so quiet anymore. If I am taking care of him that morning I have to get him ready and get him to his daycare mother. There is no other opportunity have time for myself or work on a project because there are other things which I have to take care of. I have to go to work or do various chores. I am aware that I need that time. I am aware that if I don’t get up in the morning at the designated time then I’m not going to have the time to meditate. I’m not going to have the time to do those things that are important to me. Some days when I wake up in the morning, I lie in bed and think to myself: “I don’t really want to get up..”. But then I just go over it in my head: “If I don’t get up then I won’t be able to meditate this hour today, I’m not going to be able to work on this project today, I’m not going to be able to read this thing that is really important to me today”. Then I just get up. I decide that it is important and I get up. It’s not so much that I am thinking about all of these things in the morning, spinning around in thoughts. It’s more like a recognition: “If I don’t get up now, I’m not going to be able to do that”. I get up because doing those things is important to me.
When I started recording the video on this topic, I really didn’t feel like it. I recorded a first take and I felt like it was really bad. I thought: “I don’t want to do it. Actually I’d like to go home”. But then I just continued doing it, because I felt that it is important to me and that I want to do this video. I knew that I wouldn’t be able to conveniently record it at another time this week, because there were many other things on my schedule. I realised: “Now is the time. I’ve got to do it. Now I’ll just follow through”. What is super-important to recognise is that: While it may not be easy to follow through with things when we don’t feel like doing them – it becomes easier with time”. This is because each time you do something, you follow your inner compass, you act in alignment with your vision and goals for your life – you are strengthening an identity within yourself that says: “I do what is good for myself, I keep my word, I follow through on things, I am someone who works towards the realisation of my goals and I achieve them”. The more you do it – the easier it gets. I really want to encourage you to have a look at your own life and see where you could strengthen your discipline and follow through on things, just by being aware of:
- What are the negative consequences if you don’t do it? Get clear about it.
- What are the positive consequences if you do follow through on it.
Honestly, for me it’s mostly the negative consequences that give me the “kick”, the motivation, where a switch is turned in my mind. Once I start doing what I have to do, most of the time I start to actually enjoy doing it. Many times when I don’t feel like moving my body (for example in the morning) and then I start doing it, then it becomes good to do it. Many times when I start recording, it’s really cold these days and I don’t feel like recording or I feel uneasy and insecure. But once I start doing it then it gets very easy, joyful and fun. So get started, just follow through, keep your own word – because it builds an identity where you just know: I am someone who achieves his/her goals, who follows through and keeps his/her word, who does not need to feel like doing something in order to get it done. Then you will see yourself achieving more and more of the results that you actually desire and move the areas of your life that you want to improve towards that vision you are holding.
Feel free to take advantage of the worksheet I created for this post.