Motivation vs discipline - 9GAG)

A few weeks ago, I wrote a post about my mid month's resolution. about how I was going to put in the work to be more consistent with the things I do.
But as with most resolutions humans tend to make, it's likely to fall apart if I don't possess one crucial thing... discipline.

Discipline is always something I've struggled with. from my schooling to my work to even my hobbies, discipline had always been hard for me to grasp.
But I still read, I still worked and I still performed my duties even with low amounts of discipline and was due to ... superpowers.

Just kidding,
It was motivation.
I didn't tend to do anything until I was motivated to do it and that was a unexceptional way to live.

The thing about living solely on motivation is that it's not sustainable.
I can't even begin to count how many times I laid awake at 3am and all of a sudden I decide to change my life, read more books, finally start working out, stop sleeping at ungodly hours and so on
and yes, I actually did those things...
for about a week.

Then it all comes crashing down and I'm right back to where I started, feeling like poop and waiting for the next 3am motivation to hit.

Now the problem with this situation is not the motivation I had, it's the absence of discipline to follow through with the things motivation started.

The problem a lot of us have is that we rely on motivation too much to do things.
What if motivation is low? What if it's not there at all?
Would we just wait and not utilize time and opportunity?
That is just a recipe for mediocrity.

Anyone with a vision for the future must have discipline.
Think of it this way
If your future self is a great person, he/she would have a particular set of habits attributed to his/her greatness.
Maybe he/she knows 5 languages or workouts 4 times a week or reads 4 books a month and so on.
But those habits wouldn't just appear, they're built from somewhere... from now.
then they'll grow into what our future selves possess.
But all these cannot happen without discipline.



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Now I'm not trying to say motivation is bad or useless.
Quite the contrary.

Motivation is a really good thing and in this world where motivation is low and fleeting, we need every ounce we can get.
But we need to accept the fact that as good as it is, it's still a temporary thing and it's also very fragile.

I'm sure you've ever heard the story of the man who failed 1000 times to invent the lightbulb.
do you think it was motivation that made him keep going after all those failures?
His story is a perfect example of how motivation and discipline go hand in hand.

He was motivated to create something useful for mankind and he was disciplined enough to see it to the end.

Motivation set his goal
but disciplined worked it to accomplishment.

And that is exactly why discipline trumps motivation.
Sustaining and finishing something is significantly more important than starting it. And you can only finish what you started if you have discipline.

Motivation starts progress,
discipline sustains it.

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Unlike motivation, discipline is not short term.
it takes time,
it takes effort.
And sometimes it requires pain.

So what then do we do?
Well, I'm not gonna tell you to wake up by 4 in the morning and read 26 hours a day.


What I'm gonna tell you to do is the only thing that works.
Yes, there's only one thing that works when trying to be disciplined.
Pay no attention to the hundreds of tiktok self-help videos that tell you otherwise.

And that one thing to start by taking little steps

You want to start reading a book a week,
Start by reading a few pages a week.

You want to learn a language,
learn 5 minutes a day.

You want to start working out,
start by going to the gym.
Even if you don't work out, just keep going.
Take little steps in doing these and
with time, you'll become more consistent, you'll grow and it'll get to a point will reach a point where your discipline becomes your strongest motivation.

The truth is sometimes you'll stumble, sometimes you'll fail but as long as you don't stop, you'll become unstoppable.

Motivation is an event, it's a feeling,
discipline is a lifestyle.

So stay motivated but more importantly, stay disciplined.

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Thank you for reading.

Stay buzzing,

Maximus ✍🏾


So explanatory, relatable and practical. I really love how you proffered solutions to be more disciplined. Consistency is key.


Wow...this write-up came to me at the right time
Thanks man