Motivation vs. Discipline

Jason Huval

Not Motivated? If you are Disciplined, it won’t matter.

A wise man once told me that if I had discipline, I would never need motivation. This is true of anything you want to accomplish. Money, fitness, weight loss or even becoming a Doctor.

Here’s what you may say to the above…

  • I’m not a routine person.
  • I’m just so busy, I don’t have time for (fill in the blank).
  • I’m just not organized enough.

These are all bullshit by the way. We are all busy and nothing worthwhile is quick and easy.

I’m not saying that some people aren’t more motivated than others, nor do I believe that motivation isn’t a huge driver for people. But motivation isn’t forever. It comes and goes for everyone. But I can tell you that most successful people have a routine and have the discipline to maintain that routine and hold themselves accountable. Pick just about any successful person, not just business, I mean athletics, music, movies, you name it and look Google their routine. Many have it available if they are famous enough.

In my previous blog I spoke of my favorite little book, Chop Wood and Carry Water. Read that book! It’s about the process and dedication of forming habits for success and that it doesn’t come easy for anyone. Some people just make it look easy and nearly everyone wants a short cut; which, if taken will be short lived.

You need a routine that fits your objectives to help you reach your goals. I won’t do a super deep dive here, but you need to consider who or what is holding you back from achieving whatever it is you are wanting to do. My guess is that most of the issues lie within yourself, but whatever the case may be, you need to remove the obstacles in your way.

Motivation comes and goes. Even with myself I find the ebbs and flows of my personal life greatly impact the “motivation” I have to show up and bring my “A” game. However, I am a relentless creature of habit. You are too. The way in which we developed our habits just may be a bit different.

It is important to note though, that my habits are centered around my objectives which are aligned with my goals. This isn’t complicated and you can do the same, I’m certain. It’s forming the habits that are aligned with your objectives that will allow you to reach your goals. If you are unwilling to build those habits that will put you in the trajectory you want to be in, you’ll stay right where you are and not have to burden yourself with any changes. Show up or stay put. It’s up to you.

The basics for finding your disciplined-self are these:


  • Defining your goal. What do you want to accomplish? And believe me, you better be excited about this. This is what your heart truly desires. Some call it their purpose.
    • For Example:
      • I want to lose 50 lbs
      • I want to make $200k a year
      • I want to be a commercial pilot
  • Plan objectives to get to the goal. How do you eat an elephant? One bite at a time. Rome wasn’t built in a day. Chop Wood and Carry Water. (Insert other cliches here.) Haha. Your objectives should be measurable and will slowly but consistently move the needle closer to your goal.
    • For example continuing from above:
      • I need to lose two pounds a month for the next two years
      • I need to increase my earnings by 20% a year for the next 5 years
      • I need to earn my private pilot’s license in the next 2 years.
  • Decide which new habits will accomplish the objectives you’ve set for yourself and that are aligned with your goals.
    • For example continuing from above:
      • I wake up 1 hour earlier every morning and walk my neighborhood for 30 minutes.
      • I spend one hour every morning expanding my knowledge for a promotion or career move and every year I shop my position with other companies.
      • I take two classes in flight school per semester.
  • The collection of all of these new habits you form and if you stay disciplined even for a short period of time, will create your new routine. This new routine moves in the direction you want to go with your life. It has set in motion a series of upcoming challenges and accomplishments that will complete your objectives allowing you to set new and bigger objectives to get closer to your goal. Our routine is what keeps us disciplined.

As stated above, we are all creatures of habit and whether you admit it or not, you have habits and a routine already. They likely aren’t serving you well to achieve your goal, so start the plan today.

Stay Disciplined my friends and you can achieve much more than you give yourself credit for.


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