Catalyst Vlog (2/1/2012) – Discipline and Happiness


Hi, everyone. My name is Ed DeCosta. I’m
an executive coach with the Catalyst Associates, and you’ve found my YouTube channel of coaching
videos. This is my video blog entry for Wednesday, February 1, 2012.
This week we’re going to talk about “Discipline and Happiness.” Are they an odd couple?
Those are words that don’t typically go together. When I talk to my clients about
discipline, it’s often thought of as a stern, very serious word if someone is “disciplined.”
Think about it back to your childhood. If you were disciplined at school or disciplined
at home, that wasn’t a positive thing. It was a negative thing. You had to be taught
a lesson. In fact, the word “discipline” actually comes from the Latin word “to convey
knowledge” or “to teach” or “to learn,” so it’s not inherently positive or negative.
It’s literally about learning. My question is: do these words go together?
Are disciplined people happy? Think about Jim Rohn. You might have heard of the famous
writer and motivational speaker Jim Rohn. He said, “Discipline is the bridge between
your goals and your accomplishments.” I didn’t say it was the bridge between your
goals and your happiness. He said it was the bridge between your goals and your accomplishments.
But do people who accomplish more feel more happy? I say the answer is yes, and I’d
ask you to do this exercise. As of right now, look back a week. Maybe even look back a month.
What have you accomplished? What have you gotten done? How have you behaved – your
being as opposed to your doing? How have you conducted yourself with others, with yourself,
at work, and at home? Be as specific as you can. In fact, rate yourself on a scale from
one to ten, with ten being the absolute best you think you can be.
That first exercise is about looking back. The second part – and there are only two
– has to do with the next month. I would challenge you to put together a plan for that
next month. It can be a week if you’d prefer. Think about the big goals, the so-called “big
rocks,” the things that are the most important to you and document them.
In fact, share that document with someone that you trust. Just like you make a list
of things that you would like to accomplish, make a list of the characteristics that you
want to exhibit. I mentioned a few of them earlier: kind, patient, loving, supportive.
You pick your own, and then again share with someone else.
Make a little cheat sheet, a little notecard to help you to remember. Put it on the mirror
in the bathroom. Put it on your monitor at your computer at work or at home, and keep
track. Then in one month, do the very same exercise that you did in step one. Look back
on the month that you just spent and ask yourself how satisfied you are with not only what you’ve
done but who you’ve been. My suspicion is that you will be more satisfied
with yourself about the upcoming month than you were in the previous month. Why? Because
you’re more conscious of it. You are living very purposefully, very consciously because
you set a goal, you determined that which you wanted to be and that which you wanted
to do, and then you did it. The happiest people are those that are most
at peace with what they’ve done and what they’re doing and who they are and who they’re
being. That’s just my sense. It’s a powerful exercise. I challenge you to do it and then
let me know. Give me some feedback. It worked for you; it didn’t work so well. I’d love
to hear. My name is Ed DeCosta of the Catalyst Associates.
Wherever you are, please make it a great day.

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