In Career, Life

Being disciplined is a way I help myself stay successful

People always express utter amazement at the fact that I wake up at 6.30 a.m. every morning even on weekends, and while on vacation!!!

I rarely sleep in unless I am truly, 100% exhausted.

One of the reasons why I wake up so early, is partly because I like to not be stressed about getting ready for work or to start my day.

If I woke up at 8 a.m. or 8.30 a.m., I’d have to scramble to throw everything on in 15 minutes – half an hour, and I don’t want to rush.

Mostly, I want to stay disciplined.

It is so much harder to wean yourself back to a 6.30 a.m. wakeup call if you screw it up on the weekends by sleeping until 1 p.m.!!!

(Incidentally, my mother is the same way. She wakes up every day at 7 a.m.)

DISCIPLINE IS KEY

I try to be moderately disciplined in every part of my life, because it helps me stay on track to continue being the person I want to be.

I don’t have any written schedule that says: Brush Teeth at 9.05 p.m. sharp and Floss 2 minutes later!, but I do set little rules for myself and I try to watch what I’m doing to make sure I am staying focused.

MONEY

I love to shop and travel, but I know my limits. I get this angst when I see my budget reach uncomfortable levels, especially since I KNOW I don’t need another piece of clothing or a new accessory.

I make sure that I always max out my retirement accounts before I think about buying anything frivolous, and I have a personal goal to save 75% of my net income each year.


Even being a freelancer, I had to be extremely disciplined to watch my profit margins, lower my expenses (travel) and make sure that I made and saved money at the end of the day.

HEALTH AND FITNESS

I will admit it’s naturally hard for me to put on weight (my body fights to lose the weight each time I gain it), but I also don’t put myself in the position to gain weight.

stock_gym-working-out-exercise

I also really hate going to the gym, and I acknowledge I’d be healthier if I did…

Even so, you can be skinny but extremely unhealthy because you eat junk or are TOO skinny.

I just eat simple, nutritious, real foods until I’m full (stuffed, even), and I avoid things that I know are bad for me such as junk or processed foods. The “junk” I do eat is stuff like homemade cake.

I walk when I can and/or take public transportation and I take the stairs unless I am in heels or carrying a lot of stuff.

I also do a little yoga every day (longer when I feel the need to), to stay lithe and flexible to stay healthy.

I also go to the dentist once a year, but I brush and floss each night so that I don’t end up with cavities or any other expensive dental operations.

IT ALL ADDS UP

All of these little, stupid things in my life add up to helping me stay successful. Discipline is like a muscle — you have to work at it and exercise it daily so that it stays strong.

By being in control of my money, I am disciplined and able to handle any financial storm. I also have an excellent peace of mind which contributes to my being very stress-free and relaxed.

By being in control of my weight, I am healthy so that I can live with putting as little stress on my body as possible, and I will live a long and healthy life… not to mention how much money I’m saving by not going to the doctor for preventable health issues.

I sometimes veer off into the wrong path and get sidetracked, but I always get myself back in line, and being disciplined helps with that.

Being disciplined adds up because you’ve set a loose structure for your life, and you have certain expectations of yourself, which will help you achieve the level of success you want.

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Sherry of Save. Spend. Splurge.

Millionaire at 36 after getting out of $60K of student debt in 18 months, a little over a decade earlier, using TheBudgetingTool.com. Since then, I have paid my $600K home in cash (my half was $300K), my $180K casr in cash, worked 50% of my career (taking 1-2 year breaks), and quadrupled my income within 2 years of graduating, going from $65K to $260K with an average lifetime savings rate of 50%. I could retire today if I wanted, but love my work-life balance as a freelancing consultant in STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Math). I am all about balance - between time and money, and also enjoying my money. I also post daily on Instagram @saverspender.

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6 Comments

  1. SarahN

    I’ve been waking at 7am on holidays for 9am tours, so I have a leisurely start. Now, normally I’m up at 530 and work at 7am, and that’s RIDICULOUS to maintain every single day imo…

    You’re def more dedicated with food than I am!

    Reply
    1. Sherry of Save. Spend. Splurge.

      Food is def. one place I try not to stray because it makes my skin break out and that causes stress in trying to cover it up.

      Reply
  2. Debra

    Excellent article, I loved it. You stated it perfectly when you said you try and be moderately disciplined in ever part of you life in order to help stay on track to continue being the person you want to be. I honestly feel our family units, communities, etc. would be better if more people took these message to heart.

    Reply
  3. Lisa

    Discipline gets such a bad rap for some reason and I don’t understand why. Without it, how can you achieve anything? I like what you said – “Discipline is like a muscle — you have to work at it and exercise it daily so that it stays strong.”

    Reply
  4. Adriana @MoneyJourney

    Self discipline helps a great deal indeed.
    I never thought it would, until I started waking up at 5 a.m. (or, 6-ish, if I’m too tired) and start the day with exercise. It’s not easy, but the energy and productivity boost throughout the day are amazing! And yes, it all ads up and helps you feel more confident to be in control of your actions 🙂

    Reply

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