Forming new habits can be both tough and exciting. Many factors play a key role when you want to create a habit but motivation and self-discipline are at the top of the list. Both of them will get you through a difficult period of self-improvement but you might wonder which one is more valuable.
Some people swear that being motivated can help you reach every single goal you set for you, while others are certain that mastering self-discipline is better overall. So let’s compare self-discipline and motivation in order to see which one is more helpful when it comes to forming new habits.
What is the motivation?
To put it as simply as possible, motivation is something that can help you achieve the unimaginable. Having a drive that propels you forward is crucial for habit formation. Try to remember the last time you procrastinated before an important deadline, but you were determined to finish your project regardless of the situation you put yourself into. It is the said motivation that got you through those hours of work because you wanted to complete your assignment and send it before it was too late.
Being motivated to form a habit will make you feel excited and enthusiastic. The link between motivation and your own emotions is evident so you can fuel it even more if you perform well. Your excitement about future will grow and you should allow it to carry you to the goal. But feelings are fragile, and motivation can disappear after a couple of days. If you underperform, your brain might feel different about the habit and you could try to self-sabotage yourself.
Putting all of your faith into motivation might not be the best choice if you are not ready to leave some room for possible mistakes. There will be obstacles because you simply cannot stop living your everyday life and shield yourself from the outside factors. Things will happen, and the levels of your motivation will eventually drop. You need to accept it and move along. And this is where self-discipline comes into play.
What is self-discipline?
If you are in it for a long haul, you need to have self-discipline. Motivation can get you started but being able to discipline yourself will help you form a real habit. Self-discipline does not have anything to do with your emotions, and you will get the work done regardless of how you feel at a certain moment. But strengthening your self-discipline can be extremely hard, especially if you have never really used it before.
There are many motivational speakers out there that can make you feel passionate about pursuing your dreams instantly, but there are not many self-discipline experts that can do the same. It is not a popular topic because it requires work and focus. Your aim is to turn your tasks into habits you will repeat every single day. Therefore, creating a schedule and sticking to it is a perfect starting point. Combine it with self-discipline, and you will be on a right track.
Some people believe that you can form a habit in only three weeks but a recent study proves that it takes a lot more – sixty-six days, to be precise. That is a long time, and you will most certainly underperform on some days, miss a workout or two, or procrastinate. Log the data and continue with your initial plan. Starting everything over just because you made a tiny mistake is not worth it and will not help you with forming a new habit.
For best results – combine them
Self-discipline and motivation are truly two different factors. But if you want to form long-lasting habits, the best thing you can do is to bring them together. Use the initial drive that comes with motivation and you will get through the first couple of weeks easily. Once you start to doubt your decision to form a habit, allow the self-discipline to take over and do the work while paying no attention to your emotions.
There will be days when you don’t feel like sticking to your routine – that is perfectly alright. You might need to find something that will pull you out of your bed and get you to work. So promise yourself small rewards – something enjoyable like a long bath or a night out with your friends. These will give you quick motivation boosts which might be a thing that will help you out in the long run.
Forming new habits is crucial for self-improvement. It will be an emotional journey so be well prepared for it because there will be ups and downs along the way. Mixing up motivation and self-discipline is the way to go. That is the best way to create habits, stick to them, and completely reinvent yourself.
Lucy Benton is a writing coach, an assignment writer who finds her passion in expressing own thoughts as a blogger. She is constantly looking for the ways to improve her skills and expertise. If you’re interested in working with Lucy, you can find her on FaceBook and Twitter