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I'll answer both your questions here:

> Were you raised with discipline in mind – as in, were your parents/guardians promoting discipline within you? Did you get to it yourself?

Good questions. I think I was raised with less forced discipline than most kids. I say forced because there was necessary discipline. My family didn't have much so when I was old enough to want money to buy things that meant finding a job. With that said, external discipline never lasts. IMO, that's more like motivation. There is a reason discipline is almost always called 'self' discipline. It comes from within.

> How do you get to that point, mentally? What do I do?

Understand that there is no end point. If I reached my goal today, I would just make another goal farther out. The goal becomes less important than the process.

Also understand it's never easy. You may think you have no discipline right now, but in reality I might be a half step closer than you are. I fail at my self discipline all the time. Good, it gives me something to work on.

What you need to do is simply start. IMO, exercise is so important not just physically but mentally. Powerlifting taught me so much about the grind and pushing forward when your body wants to stop. It took months one time for me to add 5# to my dead lift.

So workout - right now. Get up do some burpees, push ups, sit ups, and squats. In 20 minutes, workout one is done. Set your alarm for 20 minutes earlier and do the same tomorrow and the day after that. Ignore whether or not those 20 minutes are meaningful (do you ponder the meaningfulness of watching a single TV show??), just do it. Embrace the strain of putting in this tiny bit of effort to get up and workout.






> It took months one time for me to add 5# to my dead lift.

Holy cow! I would've quit after a few days of no progress.

Thank you for this reply. The workout felt good. I did a little bit of push-ups, squats, and plank, and it was a major boost already. Last time I exercised was a week ago.

How did you start? Was it the school PE? your parents' example?


By that point I had been dead lifting for years. Every 5# I added over 500# was a struggle. Some days progress was measured by lifting the bar 1” off the ground.

How did I start? Many years ago in my early 20s I thought I had it all. Great fiancé, good job, and a good life. I could see my whole future and it was good. Through a bunch of random circumstances I started playing DAoC (old school mmo). I had always played games for fun, so no big deal.

Fast forward 2 years and every waking moment I had that I wasn’t working I was playing DAoC. I was still doing my job, but I was certainly not excelling. Eventually my fiancé left me. Even though I quit DAoC Soon after, it was too late to get her back. It reminds me of a scene in Mushashi where he asks the priest why he tied him to a tree. The response was he tied tied those ropes himself - exactly as I had done.

Suddenly I had all this time, was getting pudgy, was depressed, and couldn’t sleep. My apartment had a gym so I started working out doing things like you just did today. Suddenly I was tired enough to sleep again, my confidence came back, and I had a new focus.

Later I found powerlifting and it was like finding zen. Take the craziness of the day, complexity of work, and relationships and throw all that out. While of course there is proper technique, the dead lift is simple. See that weight? Pick it up. Repeat :)

From that one self discipline decision to stop DAoC and then start working out so many other things presented themselves. I went back and finished grad school, excelled at better and better jobs, and today 15+ years later I’m married to a great woman.

I certainly have not perfectly followed self discipline this whole time, but even just the little I had made great changes for me. If I can be the catalyst for even just a single person to do the same, I’m happy :)


Glad to hear things worked out for you because you'd made a better choice. Shame that it came to that, of course, but once you're in a rut, the only good thing I reckon I can do is praise your efforts towards getting out. :)

What was your mindset like from the day you quit DAoC to now? Did you feel like it all doesn't matter anyway, so why bother? Was yours a resolute mind?




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