The Dynamic Relationship Between Rules and Self-Discipline

Dec 13, 2023
silhouette drawing of a person walking on blocks towards a light bulb.  Blocks say discipline is the bridge between goals and accomplishment

Today, we delve into a critical yet often overlooked aspect of self-discipline: the relationship between rules and their connection to your inner dialogue. This article is beneficial for anyone eager to improve their self-discipline and fortify their path to success.

Understanding Rules: Beyond Restrictions

Let's begin by delving into how rules, devoid of a meaningful relationship, can often feel constrictive and even punitive. Think about a situation in your life where you've experienced this. Perhaps it was a strict work environment, overly rigid schedules, or even a set of self-imposed rules that felt suffocating. Maybe you wondered why they were necessary, questioned their relevance or importance. Maybe you even felt resentful or victimized by these rules. These are examples of how rules, without the support of a healthy relationship, can become oppressive.

Embracing Relationships Within Rules

Now, let's shift our focus to the potential of rules when they're embedded within a supportive relationship. Consider how a great mentor, coach, or even a close friend has provided guidance and structure in your life.How a boss that is clearly invested in your success and growth has offered a road map or how-to plan. Rules, when established within a positive relationship, can serve to reduce overwhelm, offer clear direction, and set life-affirming boundaries that protect your well-being. It's all about context and connection.

Your Relationship with Self: A Key to Discipline

The relationship you nurture with yourself is the linchpin for achieving goals and upholding discipline. How you treat yourself when setting rules and boundaries influences your adherence to them. Are you your harshest critic, or do you nurture a supportive inner dialogue? Are your rules too rigid or perhaps non-existent? Cultivating a supportive self-relationship, aligning rules with your aspirations, not only ensures inevitable goal achievement but also infuses joy into the process.

Our aim is to highlight the importance of the relationship you maintain with yourself while establishing and following rules:

1. Recognizing Relationship Dynamics: Realize the significant impact of self-relationship in adhering to personal rules.
2. Reframing Rules as Tools: Shift your perception of rules from restrictive elements to tools that enhance and support you and your goals.
3. Review and Revise: Evaluate existing rules; ensure they align with your goals, providing necessary support.  Get rid of or rewrite the ones that don't and cultivate new ones that do.
4. Nurturing a Positive Self-Relationship: Implement practical strategies fostering a positive relationship with yourself.  Invite more curiosity and compassion while releasing judgment and criticism.  

Uniting rules and self-relationship creates a pathway to disciplined goal attainment. Embrace rules as allies, not adversaries, and foster a supportive relationship with yourself, propelling you towards success.


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