From the Dojo to Daily Life: Using Discipline to Transform Your Habits, Choices and Actions

Discipline isn’t just about routines and rules, but a fundamental part of every action we take.
When we compare ourselves to other people, it’s they’ve accomplished more because their more disciplined, but, let me challenge your beliefs for a second. What if, in the end, we all had the same amount of discipline. And that we’re all 100% disciplined when it comes to our everyday lives.

When you sit down and watch 20 episodes in a row of that amazing netflix series that you just can’t pull away from, and you say to yourself, “I have no discipline and couldn’t do anything else….” Well, let’s turn that around for a second. You actually had the amazing discipline to sit through 20 episodes, without stopping, without stepping away, without doing anything else.

Just like I discussed in my previous episode about breathing, a great way to learn about discipline is to join my Aikido class at the Texas Rock Gym, but isn’t necessary. You can understand and learn about discipline and self-discipline many other ways as well. It’s basically an understanding of what it is and how to use it to change your life.

In the martial arts we learn about discipline from our first class on the mat. Bowing in to the instructor, siting in this awful position called seiza. It’s so painful, I can still remember my first class and having to sit like this! Then the years and countless repetitions of the techniques in order to master them. That’s all about discipline.

Learning about the Japanese culture, the language and the way things are done, you are being disciplined into learning new things and new ways of thinking.
That discipline that we learn in the dojo, goes way beyond that as well, it’s about the choices we make, that habits we form and the perseverance we show in our daily lives.

Sitting through 20 episodes requires the same amount of discipline as training for 20 days, the only difference is in the activity and the time required to do it.
Whether it’s watching tv or running a marathon, you still have to have that commitment to sit down, or get up and run. Watching a one hour episode, takes the same amount of time as running for 1 hour a perfect amount of time to train, or taking a class of Aikido for 1 hour. Yes one is physical and the other is not, but both still require the same amount of discipline.

But, how can you take what you learn in a martial arts class and applied it directly to your everyday life:
It’s the simple habits, like Physical discipline, in class we commit to physical conditioning and skill development, we practice routines over and over again, take that out of the class and commit to staying fit, exercising at least 5 days per week.

Emotional discipline, In class we focus on ethics and commit to respecting one another, maintaining our composure in the face of adversity and exhibiting sportsmanship. Take that out of the the class and respect each and every person you interact with regardless of how they treat you.

Mental discipline: In class you commit to focusing your mind on improving your technique, increasing your focus and concentration and being 100% present in the moment. Take that out of the class and live the present moment, focusing your mind and your attention to where you are right now. Focusing our minds on ourselves and not other people and what they doing.

An easy way to learn about discipline is by taking a martial arts class, but it’s not the only way. Understanding what discipline is and how to use it to change our routines and daily actions in order to get different results in our personal lives is the key.

Understand that it takes the same amount of discipline to watch 20 episodes of your favorite Netflix series as it takes to train for a marathon, both achieve a desired goal. If you’re unhappy with your situation and want to make a change, make that choice today.

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