So far the year is going well. I haven’t been perfect in my discipline endeavors (“discipline” is my focus word for 2018), but I have been pretty consistent. On a daily basis I aim to…
Spend time in the word (bible study)
Get on my Duolingo app for a minimum of two lessons (10 minutes) a day
Write a journal entry
Drink three of my water bottles a day (72 oz)
Read for 30 minutes minimally daily
I have been able to accomplish every one of these tasks except reading daily. I have missed two days of days of reading thus far. At the end of 2017 I made the decision that I was spending entirely too much time on social media. If I moved most of the time I spent on my phone to other, more productive activities, I could get a lot more done, feel a little more fulfilled in the year ahead and propel my life in a more well-rounded direction. This year I want to get closer to finding my calling. What it is I have been created to do. Having no idea where or how to start, I figured I would begin with self-improvement. Start building up the adult I hope to be; educated, at peace with who I am, strong in my spirituality, bilingual… ultimately, ready to receive whatever opportunity or trial comes my way, with grace.
This discipline vendetta, just eight short days into the year is already morphing into a journey of self-exploration.
I figure if I am not certain about what it is that I have been designed to do, what career path is ultimately going to make me tick, I can at the very least, learn more about myself, create strong habits to carry throughout my life and sincerely work on shaping myself. Imagine an artist working on a slab of rock; slowly chipping away to discover a beautiful sculpture underneath. Through discipline I hope to slowly chip away to truly discover myself. What makes this different than anything I have done before? For me, it feels like bootcamp for my mind and soul. I have worked for years to eat better, dress better, build a workout routine (still working on that one), overcome depression and have a stronger sense of self...all through mostly positive thinking and prayer. This time around, I aim to use tangible daily tasks (discipline) to help push and track myself.
Every time I do a bible study I am taking notes. Eventually, I hope to use my study notebook as a reference when hard times come. A place I can look to get helpful reminder and suggestions when tough times come, because they always do. Paired with my personal journal, and Commit 30 planner, I hope to be able to track my year, my successes and how I handled failure along the way. At the end of 2018 I hope to be mentally and spiritually transformed.
I have also made reading a top priority. There have been far too many times during 2017 where I thought to myself, “In all the time I just spent scrolling, I could have gotten some good reading done”. This year, I hope to not have that thought once. Social media has its place in our lives, and I don’t aim to paint it as a monster, instead, like everything else apply the concept of moderation. You can eat, play, do whatever you want, but make it even, create a well-rounded lifestyle. I have always loved the metaphor of a bicycle wheel and its spokes. The spokes in a wheel are all spread in different directions, with even spacing throughout them. This in turn, allows the wheel to turn and function appropriately. If the spokes were solely dispersed on half of the wheel, it would collapse as you tried to ride your bike. In turn, if we were to focus solely on your career and fitness, your relationships, your spirituality and self-care may suffer. All of these things need care and attention.
Via discipline, I hope to create a complete, round and even life. Now don’t get me wrong, this doesn’t necessarily mean you should spend as much time in a book as your should with your family...figure out what an even and well rounded life looks like for you and set some tangible, small, steady goals. Daily victories feed the soul.
My hope is that by the end of the year I will feel like a work of art, slowly sculpted over the course of a year, after having chipped away at the excess...from a big block of matter, into something beautiful, more beautiful than I could have imagined.
Best wishes in your year ahead. We got this.