I have felt challenged by people’s love of structure and order, internally writing them off as square, conservative and people who need to ‘get a life’, preferring what I called “Freedom” and “Creativity” which was in reality just an excuse for laziness, craziness and impulsive risk taking behaviours. I thought that the challenges that I was facing because of my lack of conformity were other people’s problems and not something that I personally needed to adjust or change. I was the revolutionary, the spirited leader that was going to do away with things the way they were because they were not working the way that I wanted them to work and because I was being creative with my energies, so what I chose to do, no matter how negatively it affected my family, was okay. However, my journey has led me to this day when I have realised that there is value in order, that there is value in structure and that it is actually order and structure that brings true liberty and abundance and our spirit sincerely craves that discipline.
I know what discipline is now and it is different to passion and creativity.
Passion and creativity will get you to jump up and out of your chair, but discipline is what tells you stop when what you are doing is going to infringe on others rights or your own well being. Passion and creativity will lead you forward, but discipline guides you so that you achieve the mark. Passion and creativity will want to take you off in all directions, but discipline leads you down the pathways that end in success. You need passion and creativity, but you also need discipline. You also need to have a structure within which to function because structure breeds confidence, stability and security.
I can only relate this to the years when I was a dancer at College. For a brief period of my life I knew what discipline really felt like. I had not learned discipline at school because I had no boundaries in my childhood and limited parental guidance. I did not submit to authority easily because of the areas in our family that were broken. However, when I went to college there was structure, there were rules and there was an opportunity for me to apply myself. And for the first time I tasted real order, real structure and real discipline. I learned how to really focus my energies. I count my years at college as some of the best years of my life, but what happened when that structure was removed?
Initially I carried forward the same internal driving forces, keeping my home beautiful, keeping my physical body healthy and looking the best that it could be, striving to improve my mind and my opportunities. However, once I married and other things started to press in the order and structure that I had loved for so long started to implode, bit by bit. Until eventually the strictures of eating properly, of regular routine, of keeping my house beautiful slipped into the abyss as depression, despair and life’s pressures swamped me.
What had taken me years to achieve, quickly was eroded and until now has not been rebuilt.
I want to make the comment here that “DOING” has never been an issue for me. I have always kept myself busy. The problem is that my energies are all being spent in directions that are not feeding back into the most important part of my life, my family. And when you live your life “DOING” as I have, one day you realise that all that doing is of no value if it doesn’t feed back into your household, if it doesn’t translate into a positive improvement in your existence.
So now I face the odious task of rebuilding that order, that strucutre, that discipline back into our lives. I face the task of taking control of my body, of my decisions about food and exercise, of my household, of eradicating laziness in all forms from our lifestyle. You can be busy and still be lazy and that is one of the points that I want to make here. Busyness doesn’t mean you’re not lazy, it just means that you are choosing not to address the core issues of your life.
This is not to say that I have not achieved big things in these years when my life has been quietly chaotic. Quite the opposite. I have achieved so much and it is surprising what I have managed to do with the loose structure I have maintained but imagine what I could have achieved had I been disciplined and focused and took the time to order my surroundings to the best of my ability and to bring order and structure to my children? And what have I sacrificed for that achievement? I had the revelation about how focus helps us way back in 2008 (The Kaleidoscope Effect Program I developed), yet have struggled to implement it in my own life and the fact that you can share your wisdom with others but not actually live it in your own life really bothers me.
You can still achieve in organised chaos.
I am a prime example of this. I don’t struggle with motivation – I get up and start work and work until I finish what is required. So some would say that I am definitely not lazy, however there is a laziness that I see pervading my life when it comes to looking at things that require me to think hard and to apply them. And it is in all this working that I have realised that I am taking the long roads instead of the short pathways, because I say in my mind, ‘that’s too hard, I don’t want to think about that’. I am creating pain for myself instead of joy. I am ignoring the opportunity to learn wisdom with relation to my financial management and my physical health, all because of a laziness to stretch my understanding and to take action in this area.
So I am sharing this message with my friends so that they can support me as I transition from this limited space to the next abundant space. There is wisdom in discipline. There is wisdom in listening when someone says to be careful. There is wisdom in submitting ourselves to others, to hearing their opinions and to weighing their suggestions. There is wisdom in conformity when it doesn’t challenge justice or truth. To openly reject others because of differences or because they do not agree with what we want is folly. What one sees as being conservative can sometimes be the voice of reason, the balance that is required and needed.
I have made a decision that I am going to invite discipline more fully into my world, that I am going to knock harder on the door of wisdom for myself, just as I do diligently already for my clients, helping them to bring structure and order to their world through effective planning, I am going to commit myself to doing so in my own life.
To those who already have an organised, disciplined and ordered life, I salute you. Your order has challenged my disorder but I now have a healthy respect for you all. I am sure that your wallets are full because with the wisdom of discipline there abounds wealth, honour and abundance.
I’d love to hear your thoughts on this subject. Do you struggle with discipline? How do you bring structure your life? I invite you to please share your wisdom with me.