The #1 MUST HAVE in Creating a New Habit

This has been revealed again and again. I have trained and coached thousands in this area for over 2+ decades and invariably, those who fail to create a new success habit, fail because they lacked this essential ingredient.

Some have said to me that It’s almost a chicken and egg discussion though.  What comes first?  The success habit or the discipline to create the success habit?

I don’t want to be philosophical.  No need to debate the issue.  I’ll just tell you what I found while actually working with people who were attempting to do something new with themselves.

There is tremendous excitement in starting a new approach…like the dating game.  It’s so *exciting,* with hormones and chemicals raging, to begin a new relationship that’s filled with hope and connectivity! We begin to visualize dreams being fulfilled and our life becoming perfect.

The same dynamic applies when starting a new program that appears to answer all the known personal self-development needs.  There’s great excitement.  Commitments are made with the best intentions.  Preparations are even made, research and reading is done.  And then what happens? After a few days of action, something happens.

Something always does. Life happens – external impacts (which by now we simply should be expecting) and then there are the internal impacts.

Things like:

  • self doubt
  • self pity
  • fear of success/failure
  • limiting beliefs surface
  • self sabotage – comes in too many forms to itemize
  • jealous fits of comparison to others
  • disorganized thoughts, environment
  • feelings of inadequacy
  • un-forgiveness – towards self and others
  • insecurities

Out of no where – not really – excitement morphs into negative emotions.  It happens, or begins to happen to everybody.  These culprits are universal and non-discriminating.  But yet some people do succeed, don’t they?

The people who succeed at staying on task do something the others do not.   They make taking action on this new habit a non-negotiable daily commitment.  No matter the thoughts, fears or external impacts, they make a decision to stay on task NO MATTER WHAT.

What does that take?  It takes DISCIPLINE.

  • A disciplined mind knows what to do with negative thoughts and the resulting emotions
  • A disciplined person understands the power of repeated actions
  • A disciplined person, through their commitment presses forward NO MATTER WHAT

Chicken and the egg?  Not really. A strong case can be made for discipline  or a commitment to discipline being the starting point.

A little bit of discipline ( with easy things) can be increased with practice.  Just like a weak muscle can be made strong.  It takes sets of reps and gradual increase of weights to build good muscle.  The same with discipline.

Some suggestions:

  • Make a commitment to consciously cultivate a disciplined life-style
  • Identify those areas of your life that you practice some repetitive actions – personal hygiene, eating, travel, entertainment, hobbies, etc – and isolate a few actions to focus on.
  • Make a decision to create more focused action in a few specific areas for 21 days. (for example, if (:-))you brush your teeth at night and in the morning – create a routine and ONLY brush at a specific time and for a specific length of time)
  • Do it for 21 days straight ( btw, in DIscipline – the DI stands for DO It!)

As simple as this seems it does work.  It’s precisely how I  have moved from no discipline to a disciplined life-style.  Tons of research, pioneered by Dr. Maxwell Maltz demonstrates the ‘habit in 21 days’ approach.

Change is a challenge.  Humans are creatures of habit.  So easy is rare.  But with a disciplined approach to life, creating a new success habit becomes more fun than frustrating.

Beginning with a commitment to building a disciplined approach to life, you then move on to create new and powerful success habits.   That’s the order that works.

Take me up on the suggestion above and begin building your discipline muscle today.  Create some rituals, they’re good for you.  Spontaneity is so over-rated!  🙂

There’re opportunities for rituals all around you.  Choose a few, build that discipline muscle, then you have the required approach for creating success habits.

Remember DIsciplinemeans Do it!

Wishing you Abundant Success,




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