From Awareness Builder 101: Chapter 1

February 19, 2024

1. Discipline


The book you’re reading now, didn’t write itself.


At some point in time, I got the idea to write 52 short reflections of 500 words each. I’m not the kind of guy that can sit very long, not to read, nor to write. Yet I love it to capture my thoughts, feelings and experiences into words, so this felt like a nice compromise. So here you go, 52 times 500 words, the book is born.


I would build a statue for the person who invents an app that could capture all my ideas and thoughts in words. I’ve got like a billion ideas every day and I can make up a whole story just from one thing I see, one word, one insight. Life would be so much easier with such an app! But hey, here I find myself capturing the thoughts that I’m having right now on my cell phone. Just to avoid losing them.

I am on a hike with my dog Bibi through the vineyards and forests surrounding our house. Whilst enjoying the wind and the sun on my skin, the smells of fresh green after a mild shower in the night. The sounds of the birds, of my footsteps. I realise I even enjoyed the sound of my wife snoring during the night (the poor thing has a huge cold!).


Then I caught myself! It’s happening again! “You’re in one of these funny moods where you get inspired by kind of everything. Yet by the time you get home, other things grab your attention and they get priority over sitting behind your desk and write down these words. Yes mister, if you want to make this book happen, to promote it from just one of your ideas to something tangible, you need to discipline yourself and start writing.”

Déjà vu!!! Discipline; during one of my previous funny reflective moods, I’ve been chewing on that word. What does it actually mean? And why is this one of the few words with three times the letter “I” in it? And it was only when I started to write the word differently that my eyes opened…..dIscIplIne.

That letter “I” points at me. Discipline is something you cannot delegate. It is 100% up to you! I mean, ME. So often the best ideas are wasted and goals not met due to a lack of discipline. What a waste of opportunity.


It took me a long time to finally understand that punishment, not even selfpunishment, won’t stimulate us to reach our goals. Motivation can’t come from a negative or external source. It needs to come from within, from within ourselves. True motivation will be born when we connect what’s really important to us with the footprint we want to create in life. With our core and purpose. That’s where ‘have to’ changes into ‘want to’. That’s when we’re starting to make promises to ourselves and find the energy to keep going. When we promote that promise into a commitment to self, it is as if we sign this with a signature of our heart. Every heartbeat will bring us closer to our goal.


Discipline, written as dIscIplIne, is sticking to the commitment to self.



Journaling questions for this chapter:


What does commitment to myself mean for me?


Where do I try to delegate my discipline?


What choices do I want to make around discipline?



© 2024. Alex Verlek, Coaching Works International.


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