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The Ususpected Discipline Hack

Overcoming the "paradox of choice"

In This Issue:

The Unsuspected Discipline Hack

Tools and Talismans

  • How to Change Your habits

The Unsuspected Discipline Hack

“If you want freedom in life—be that financial freedom, more free time, or even freedom from sickness and poor health—you can only achieve these things thorough discipline.”

Jocko Willink

Most of the people I’ve worked with don’t know what they want.

They have a vague idea, but they’re stuck between two equally wonderful opportunities. Or three. Or ten.

There are probably at least a dozen fields where you could excel. But you can’t excel in all of them.

There are hundreds of places you would love to live. But you can’t be everywhere at once.

There are thousands of people who could be your ideal partner—but you can’t date them all, unless you have way more stamina than any mere mortal.

When you have all these wonderful options, it’s hard to choose. Most people never do.

Or they settle for a mediocre compromise between two choices, each of which could have been extraordinary if you were all-in.

This is the dreaded “paradox of choice” that kills so many dreams.

But there are people who have freed themselves from the paradox of choice.

“Discipline is Freedom”

Jocko Willink, a decorated Navy SEAL, famously gets up and works out at 4 a.m.

He posts a picture of his watch on Instagram each morning to prove he’s doing it.

Excited Lets Go GIF by MasterClass

Gif by masterclass on Giphy

Thousands of Jocko’s followers are doing the same. How could you go wrong when you’re imitating a Navy SEAL trainer?

Well, the problem with copying Jocko Willink is simple: You’re not Jocko Willink.

Jocko’s motto isn’t, “Get up and workout.” It’s more simple and universal than that.

His motto is, “Discipline is freedom.”

Maybe getting up at 4 am to work out is congruent with the life you want and the person you want to become.

But maybe you’d be better off if you got up at 7 am and started writing. Or playing with your kids. Or studying a topic that’s going to impact your life.

What you do isn’t as important as choosing the right thing to do. And just doing it. Consistently.

Discipline is the deliberate removal of certain choices from your life. And this makes it the cure for the paradox of choice.

You’re no longer distracted by a candystore of delicious options. Discipline keeps you consistently focused on your most important goals.

Now, let’s talk about the discipline tool that nobody knows they’re using.

The Unsuspected Discipline Hack

One of the best ways to stay disciplined is to give your brain visual reminders of what you’re fighting for.

Look at images that remind you of the achievement you want, the body you want, the lifestyle you want.

This is one of the secrets behind Vision Boards.

A vision board is a collection of pictures, words, and symbols that represent things you want to attract or create in your life.

These images help switch on your Reticular Activating System and direct more of your attention towards what you want.

Keep your vision board somewhere visible so you’ll see it every day. It will help you cut off the choices that may look good, but ultimately siphon your time and energy.

So, what goes on your vision board? Well, what do you want?

Setting Important Goals

So, what’s an important goal for you?

Think about what you would do with your life if you knew with absolute certainty that you could not fail.

Is there a way you could start doing it now? Is there some small thing you could do this month or this year?

That’s an important goal. Work it into your routine. Put a picture of it on your Vision Board.

Become Unstoppable

Let me tell you why this is so important.

You are under attack.

There are constant distractions trying to take you away from what you really want, what you're really meant to do, who you're meant to be, what you're meant to have.

And distractions are the number one reason you don't already have practically everything you want.

But by giving yourself such a compelling focus that nothing is going to take you away from it, you're going to become virtually indistractable.

And this makes you essentially unstoppable.

Tools and Talismans