Discipline Day 5: Anticipating Obstacles

Self-discipline Challenge

Thanks for joining us for the 21 Day Self-Discipline Challenge!  See what it’s all about here.  If you’re just joining in, you can get the book here.

First, I want to share a little revelation I had yesterday. It was Sunday. I didn’t grow up in a Christian home, but I had Christian grandparents and they really took seriously the call for a day of rest. Sundays were spent relaxing with family. No chores were done. Leftovers or sandwiches were eaten for meals, and any dishes waited until Monday morning. The thing is, though, they earned that day of rest. It felt good to them because it was their reward after a hard week of work. I think in all of our idleness, some of us have lost that feeling. We’ve lost  our self-discipline, and have become a society of indulgence and over-indulgence. Whether it involves time or money, we get what we want when we want it—borrowing against tomorrow instead of patiently waiting. And we’ve lost the joy and satisfaction that comes with something that has been genuinely earned. It’s something I’m hoping to gain back for myself through this process. I want to sit down with a good book or movie at the end of the day and know that I have earned it through being responsible, productive, selfless and serving my family and others throughout the day.

Now onto today:

Anticipating Obstacles

Today’s chapter, like so many others, really hits home for me. I know that I’m one of the worst when it comes to giving into the failure. One bad day for me quickly becomes a bad week, or even a bad month or 6-months because I fall so hard into the pit of discouragement. Failure isn’t in falling down, it’s in staying down. We cannot listen to the voice inside that says “you’ve already messed up, you might as well give up.”

Most everything of value in this world requires perseverance, tenacity. Life requires us to keep going long after we want to give up.

If you fall down, don’t stay there! Get back up as quickly as possible, brush yourself off, and keep moving toward your goal.

Today’s Assignment: Anticipate Obstacles
Today’s assignment to identify potential obstacles reminded me of something very important. I will be travelling from Nov 14th -18th to complete my masters degree (prayers, please!). Since my mega project involves decluttering and organizing my home, that will be kind of hard to do from 300 miles away. So, I’m going to reorganize my game plan for my mega-challenge and try to come up with small and easy things that I can do while at my parents’ so that I won’t lose momentum while I’m gone.

Assignment 1: Continue with Small Habit
Success…dressed and bed made right away :)

Assignment 2: Continue with Life Hack
I’m determined to work out today. My goal is at least 20 minutes (Yes, I’m starting small). . So, I guess this kind of goes along with today’s lesson about making plans for setbacks. I haven’t really done so well with this goal so far. So, if I don’t get to it before hubby gets home from work, I have enlisted his help for added accountability and will do it as soon as he gets home. So thankful for a husband who is so supportive of all my self-improvement attempts.

Assignment 3: Mega-Project
I’m out of the kitchen now, and starting on the laundry room today. My new plan is to try and add a bit each day to make up for the days I won’t be here. Nothing to get me overwhelmed, but just enough to keep me on track.

How are you doing? How did day 5 go for you, any obstacles that you can see? I would love to hear your strategies and ideas for dealing with setbacks.

This post contains an affiliate link (which is now actually working..lol). So if you purchase the book through this link, you’ll be helping to support my site.  Thanks!



  1. lvg4him says

    Disciplined 21 Day 5
    Anticipate obstacles:
    The main obstacle is my laziness. It would be easier to just sit or lie down and check email or FB. I can stay motivated by making the commitment to not check without getting on the treadmill. Then my obstacle becomes overcoming the fact that I might “miss out.” To help with that, I will write down a Bible verse that talks about God meeting all my needs. Trusting that if He wants me to know it, and I wasn’t able to get on the treadmill that day, He will bring it to my attention somehow.

    Continue small habit:
    bed made. After reading chapter 4, I decided to have my kids do 21 days of just one habit. They too will all be making their bed before they leave their room in the morning. My idea here is it will be equivalent to Flylady’s sink. When they see clean beds in their room, they will be motivated to keep their room clean. So far so good. We are on day two with them and their room looked great this morning!

    Continue life hack:
    In two days I have already burned 200 calories surfing the net, checking FB/Twitter, and checking emails. On the treadmill as I write this! :D

    Continue mega project:
    Declutter two shelves on bookshelf.

    • Crystal says

      Paula, you are so full of inspiration! Thanks so much for sharing! I love your candid assessment about laziness–so true that we have lots of excuses, but sometimes just have to call a spade a spade, as they say. You’ve inspired me to get more serious about the working out thing!

  2. Tami says

    wow to lvg4him! you sound like you are doing great! also, crystal, i really appreciated your first paragraph…i wondered yesterday if i should have left sabbath days in the plan, but just did the fastest, easiest thing on the list instead. my bed is made, the living/dining room was clean last night before i went to bed, but i haven’t done my mega project day 5 yet. i think it will join with something else for day 6, but i will be sure to have my living/dining room clean tonight before bed again. thanks for posting; it is nice to know i can come on here and have community for the challenge!

    • lvg4him says

      Thanks Tami! You are doing great too. Sounds like this chapter was good for you. If you don’t get your day 5 done, pick it up tomorrow. I too liked the article she shared. I had my oldest read it too as part of her school today. :D

  3. says

    Sounds like you’re doing great! I love your little revelation. It so true! If we’re lazy and undisciplined we not only rob ourselves of the fruits of discipline but also of the enjoyment of the times of rest and fun, because we didn’t really earn it.

    • Crystal says

      That’s exactly it…and so for myself, it becomes a guilt thing. Even if I do take a “day of rest,” I feel guilty because I didn’t apply myself at other times like I should have.

  4. Bethany says

    Day 5 already! Good thing I have you ladies to keep me accountable. I did stay on task with my small habit (no email/blogs/social media before noon), but just barely. I sat down at the computer this morning and opened your blog, Crystal, before I was convicted to stop. I had almost convinced myself that looking at your blog would be an allowable exception, since it’s part of my 21-day quest for self-discipline. But as soon as the page came up I realized that I was sabbotaging myself, so I closed the page and walked away. Small victory!

    My life hack (16 oz. of water & a multi-vitamin before noon) went fine today. I’ve been trying to do this for months (without success) but establshing it as part of this challenge is helping.

    Continued my mega-project (weekly meal planning) and followed the plan for today. Struggled a lot with this but got it done. Today’s dinner was a new recipe and a total flop in spite of all the effort of planning in advance. Not only was the recipe a disappointment, but everything kind of fell apart from 3:30-5 pm. I work part-time from home and this afternoon I had work phone calls, computer network problems, and cranky kids all at once…naturally as I was trying to cook dinner. So needless to say it wasn’t pretty, but I did it. :)

    Which brings me to obstacles. Crystal, your insight about failure and how easy it is to give in to that really hit home with me. I struggle with perfectionism and boy, is it easy to have an all-or-nothing mentality. So I am not going to surrender to that nagging little voice that says, “You might as well quit now; this will never work.” Instead, I’m going to pray for the determination to stay focused and keep trying. The other thing that has become painfully obvious is that I have allowed my self-discipline to become weaker than it should be. I’ve always been a fairly disciplined and motivated person and assumed I was still that way, but I think the past 4 years of working at home and raising small children has allowed some bad daily habits to creep in without my awareness (or without my willingness to admit it!). I think self-discipline is a lot like a muscle: use it or lose it. So I’m looking at this challenge as boot camp for my discipline. It might be uncomfortable or even painful at times, but I have to suck it up and give it my best effort. :)

    • Crystal says

      Bethany, I would certainly never want this blog to be a stumbling block for anybody :( I am so glad that you stuck to your guns and were able to keep at it. That is NOT a small victory at all! I believe that anytime and everytime that we choose to prevail through a temptation or something like that, it’s a huge victory…and even more so, I believe that each and every time we respond in the right way it just makes it easier the next time! Thank you so much for sharing your story!

      Yikes about dinner! I hate when that happens, but of course as life goes it would happen in the midst of other chaos…isn’t that always how it goes? I hope it wasn’t one of my recipes that flopped for you. My husband and I have a funny story about a flopped recipe. I hardly ever stick perfectly to recipes, but this time I did, and it was AWFUL! So now it’s kind of a joke of ours that I should never follow recipes exactly! lol

      I love your attitude! And, you’re so right about self-discipline being like a muscle that we’ll lose if we don’t exercise it. Thanks again for sharing!

  5. Jennifer Jarrell says

    Just bought the book thru your link. I’ve been following your posts so hopefully I can catch up quickly. We just started homeschooling our two children (in the middle of the semester). Self discipline has never been my strongest asset so I pray I can learn to follow through, especially now that I have two pairs of eyes watching ALL day!

    • Crystal says

      Awesome, Jennifer! I’m so glad you’re joining in :) That’s a big part of my issue as well, I know that my children are watching. I wasn’t really taught self-discipline at all as a child and it’s been a lot harder as an adult. I want to do everything I can to teach my kids good habits from early on.

  6. says

    Did small project, working out. Did not follow through with hack , getting up early. Monday is my day off and sleep in day. Mega proj. working on Day 4 proj, so running a day behind and plan to make it up on Tuesday. Life sure gets in the way at times.

I love to hear your feedback and value your thoughts! All I ask is that we remain respectful and civil, even when we disagree. Thanks so much for reading. I appreciate you!

Thank you for joining in the discussion!