Discipline Day 6: Be Realistic

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.

So, I have a little confession to make. I haven’t been doing so well with the whole working out life hack thing.  And yesterday, even though the topic was all about not allowing discouragement to impede progress, I did just that. I let the day slip away from me until it was 11:00, and not only had I not worked out, I also hadn’t completed my mega-project daily assignment.

I hopped online to approve comments one last time before going to bed, and I saw this comment. And I was immediately convicted! Bethany is sticking to it and allowing her life to be changed by adding in more self-discipline, while I was failing. So, I found myself cleaning out the laundry/utility/pantry room at 11:00 pm last night. It took much less time than I originally thought, and it felt so good to get back on track.

As I cleaned, I pondered. You ladies who are sticking to this challenge will see positive results in your life and attitude, I really believe that. And the only person losing out by my lack of follow through is me.  But as this thought crossed my mind, it was quickly followed by another one:  It’s not just me who suffers from my lack of discipline, it’s my family as well. (<–Tweet This)

That’s why I want to stick to it, and change this about myself. Because my family deserves the best.

Today’s Assignment: Realistic Goals

It’s important to set realistic goals. Crystal says this:

Do yourself a favor when setting goals: be realistic and thoughtful about them. Even if they don’t seem quite so amazing, it’s better to set the bar lower and actually meet your goals than to set the bar too high and keep falling flat on your face.

I think it’s important to have both big and small goals. The small goals should be leading us toward larger life goals.  But they have to be broken down in a way that they are achievable.  For example, my life-goal might be to be more organized. A smaller goal is to de-clutter my house, and that’s what I’m focusing on right now. This is broken down into bite-sized goals (my daily pieces) that keep me on track.

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

Assignment 2: Continue with Life Hack
I’m struggling with this so far, as I mentioned above.  Hopefully I’ll have better news to report tomorrow.

Assignment 3: Mega-Project
Today, I’m working on the hallway closet. Lots of stuff just kind of got stuffed in there when we moved because there was no other place to put it.  I want to make better use of that space.

How are you doing? How did day 6 go for you. Are your goals achievable?

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  1. Bethany Blatz says

    Hi Crystal! I appreciate your honesty! I rarely take the time to write for these challenges, but I feel to respond since I've had a couple of enlightening experiences since I started this endeavor. This is the first blog/online challenge where I got the book and started the challenge from day 1 with everyone else, and I have to say, I am REALLY GRATEFUL for this motivating and encourage series. It's impacting my life very positively right now. I have been making clear to do lists every day and sticking to them for the most part. If I can't get something done, I've simply moved it to the next day. But I also realized I'm guilty of trying to do TOO MANY things at one time (sometimes out of necessity, but sometimes because I'm just complicated like that…hehe) I can totally relate to experiencing the dissastifaction of "borrowing from Peter to pay Paul" as Crystal puts it. I have to guard against that. Isn't it interesting that self-discipline also refers to STOPPING a project or good endeavor to simply to simply do the little things that make up our daily responsibilities? Like, STOP organizing the cupboards and make dinner for the kids…STOP that revolutionary room cleaning power surge and GO TO BED! So, I'm learning…and I LOVE THIS CHALLENGE! I also STOPPED myself yesterday and consecrated the whole thing, my lists, hopes and efforts to the Lord. He has to be the source of this…apart from Him, I really can do nothing. And I want His to be glorified through this process. I know I am working on too many things at once, but I'm trying to get our home ready to have people live with us, so my mega project is 21 Days to getting Hospitality Ready…You can read about it here on my not so frequently updated blog. http://musingsattheendoftheday.blogspot.com/
    Thanks for your time, and BE ENCOURAGED! You are an inspiration even in the set backs! :)

    • Crystal says

      Bethany, thanks so much for your encouraging words today! And thanks for sharing the link to your blog. I will certainly read about you getting hospitality ready–a worthy goal for sure :)

    • Crystal says

      Thanks, Kristy! I appreciate your encouragement! My hubby was home today (he works for the state so he gets off for the presidential election), so it was easy to get back on track today, and even a bit ahead…

  2. Coreen Smith says

    I am loving the challenges and reading everyone’s progress, however I get up and out the door to work before the daily challenges are posted and get back home to the computer around 8pm each evening. Personally I am really having a hard time fitting everything in, but by the grace of God and my willingness I am going to do this. I may have to run a day behind everyone else.
    Today was a bad day — only accomplished Mega task and stayed up past my set bed time to do it. This may come back and bite me tomorrow morning, I hope not.

    • Crystal says

      Coreen, I was going to suggest that very thing. I had thought about posting the evening before the day, but honestly I had myself so confused about which day I was supposed to be working on because I didn’t start that very well. But, please don’t let this be something that stresses you out. It is totally fine for you to run a day behind. (As for myself though I will try to get my post up earlier, even if I just have to post a plan for the day instead of a progress report for the day). I pray you’ll be blessed as you continue on. Don’t say you “only” accomplished your mega task. That is still forward progress, and it sounds like you don’t have a lot of time to work with.

  3. Bethany says

    Crystal, your honesty and encouragement is so inspiring. Thanks for keeping it real, and for sharing your time and your heart as you lead us through this challenge. By the end of this project we will all have had days (and perhaps weeks?) when we feel discouraged or frustrated by the lack of progress. When it happens to me I’m going to refer to it as my “cleaning-the-pantry-at-11 pm-moment” and push through it, just like you did. :) I also relate to your insight that a lack of discipline affects the entire family. That is so true, and so in line with Proverbs 31. It’s no exaggeration to say that I have been stunned by the difference in just six days. The funny thing is that the biggest immediate change has not been due to my mega project (meal planning), but instead is the result of my small habit (stay off the computer until after noon). Sure, the meal planning is a great and will have a long-term positive effect, but I had no idea how much of my productivity and momentum was being sucked away by the computer time first thing in the day. Talk about a revelation!

    Also, Bethany Blatz: Amen to your comments about using self-discipline to stop in the middle of a project or good endeavor in order to tend to basic responsibilities. That really hit home with me.
    As far as Day 6 is concerned, here’s my update:
    Small habit (no computer before noon)—success today, though I can’t really claim it as my own because we had a busy day and had to be up and out of the house right after breakfast, so there wasn’t really time.

    Life hack (16 oz. water & vitamin before noon): only partial success; I drank 8 oz. and took the vitamin before it was time to leave, and then didn’t drink anything until lunchtime. But I did make up for it later.

    Mega project (menu plan): success—made healthy meatloaf (turkey, oatmeal, egg whites, salsa, etc.), mashed potatoes & corn and had dinner on the table by 5 pm. I almost fell over from the shock of it. Lol. Crystal, tomorrow I’m using your pizza dough recipe. Can’t wait! BTW, my epic fail yesterday was NOT one of your recipes. It was grilled oregano chicken from the Flat Belly Cookbook. Not sure if it was me or the recipe, but it was spectacularly awful. I would definitely have a flat belly (from not eating) if I cooked it often. Lol.

    After reviewing my goals I think they are achievable, though I know I’m going to hit some serious obstacles the week of Thanksgiving. Hopefully I’ll get ahead of the curve on that next week, when my mega project mini goals include doubling up some recipes to freeze in advance. Time will tell.
    Thanks again, Crystal, for devoting your time and energy to this challenge, and for being so committed to leaving encouraging words for everyone. It truly is life changing, one habit at a time.

    • Crystal says

      You are so right, Bethany! I’m glad you’ve seen results from less computer time. I think it’s one of those things that most of us tend to underestimate until we really track it or think hard about it. I literally LOL’d at your “flat belly” comment! I hope the pizza dough turns out well. We haven’t had homemade pizza in a while (mainly because we’ve had Pizza Hut a couple times lately…gotta splurge every once in a while).

  4. says

    Way to go for cleaning at 11 pm. That's awesome! It's really inspiring that you want to do so many nice things for your family. BTW…your blog is looking pretty fancy! I like it. :-)

    • Crystal says

      Thank you so much! That’s what I did with myself on Sunday afternoon/evening. I’d been wanting a new look for a while so I finally just dove in :)

  5. lvg4him says

    Well you can see by my late post that yesterday was not a good day for me either. I had physical therapy on my arm and it was a hard day. I only had about 15 minutes to walk on the treadmill, so I did not get al lot of tweeting done. :)

    Realistic goals:
    I have realized the importance of REAL tiny steps through reading this book. I want my kids to be more responsible, so I made them a chore chart. Sometimes they would follow through, other days, I would forget to make sure they followed through. So we are starting even smaller. 21 days of making bed in morning before leaving room. I is having a great effect. They are seeing how nice their beds look, so they are able to see the clutter on the floor easier. That allows them to tidy their room,

    I had the goal of getting healthier. (Like your goal of getting fit). Maybe the small oak you have need to be more specific. I could have said to work out everyday, but I knew that I wouldn’t. Ad I didn’t have the motivation. Maybe changing your small goal to have motivation. I checking computer till I ______ (walk for 15 minutes, climb the stairs in the house 15times, life weights for five minutes)_____. It seems to me smaller goals with rewards and time limits on them (when uo I work out, how many minutes do want todo – even just 5 minutes is better than nothing. Ad next 21 days aroun you can up it to 15 after uo I develop the discilplne of doing something every day, no matter how small)! :D

    Small Habit: make bed before leaving bedroom in morning done for me and the children (they are making heir own bed)

    Life hack:
    Like I said, day 6 did not go so well. By day 7, here I am on the treadmill again!

    Mega project:
    Yesterday I was in too much pain to do anything, and that is ok. Will only work on day 7 today and not push it.

    Thank you for your honestly and for your posts. You are such an encouragement to us!!!

    • Crystal says

      Paula, I’m sorry you were in pain and had a rough day. I hope today is a better day for you. That’s a good idea about the goals and motivation. I really like the idea of moving to the point of “earning” things in my life…earning computer time with workout time, earning a rare treat with eating better most of the time, earning my rest by being productive at other times, etc. Thanks for the ideas to break it down further rather than just giving up and choosing a different goal. I really appreciate your kind words and encouragement.

  6. Bethany B says

    For Some reason my earlier comment was posted from FB because it wouldn’t let me just post unless I signed in with facebook…not sure why. But anyway, thanks for the follow-up. I’m plugging away…not getting as much done in one day as I hoped, but I’m finding that because I’m holding myself accountable to do the dishes and have clean counters at night, it’s less overwhelming in the morning and I can right into my project after breakfast!

    • Crystal says

      I added a facebook comments section a while back for the people who are signed in with facebook and would prefer to leave a comment that way rather than filling out the form. However, you can still fill out the form you just have to scroll all the way down to the bottom. I’m so glad that you’re keeping a positive attitude and that the habits you’re forming are helping your day :)

  7. Kay says

    I am SO enjoying the challenge and reading about all your progress and adventures….. just remember that NO progress is still progress of sorts… you had another day and made small changes…. you noticed what went right and what went wrong… you are getting up the next day ready to go again!

    Be kind to yourselves… progress is the key and keepin’ on keepin’ on.

    for me – small chore: spritzing the bathroom mirror & clearing counters before greeting the day – done (but might have to tweak time frame!)

    Life improvement: 15 min exercise bike daily to stengthen knee… done (this is actually happening – I am shocked and thrilled)

    Mega-project: finish quilt from 2008 quilt class…. stitched final panel on. I still haven’t been able to come up with 21 specific steps but am working on it a little each day and am confident it will be finished (or pretty durn close!)

    my blog progress is at http://kvanatta.blogspot.com/ if you are interested…. but I AM a day or so behind you

    • Crystal says

      Thanks for the encouragement, Kay! And, thanks for sharing about your own progress :) Love the community we’re forming here!

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