Entrepreneurship offers many benefits, including the ability to be your boss, set your own hours and run your business. Entrepreneurship is not for everyone. It requires a lot of hard work and self-discipline.
If you believe entrepreneurship is right for you, you can take steps to develop your self-discipline. Below are nine Young Entrepreneur Council members sharing their top tips for self-discipline, and why it is so important to be a successful business leader.
1. Be Patient And Resilient
You will face many failures and setbacks in life. However, you must keep moving forward regardless of what happens. You will eventually find a strategy and routine that helps you stay motivated if you keep your eyes on the end goal. To keep me focused and maximize time, I use timeboxing in my project management system.
2. Find out what distracts you
Discipline is for me the ability to stay focused on my task, despite distractions. You can build self-discipline by being aware of what is causing you problems and making changes to prevent similar issues in the future. When I need to be productive and focus, it is important that I turn my phone off.
3. Instead of focusing on urgent matters, think about what’s important.
For me, self-discipline is about making time each day to concentrate on the important and not the urgent. Every day, urgent matters arise in our personal and professional lives. If I set aside time to concentrate on the things that are important to me and my company, I can go further, faster.
4. All Procrastination Can Be Resolved
You don’t have to procrastinate if you lack discipline. Learn why. Procrastination does not result in poor time management or self-control issues. It is a problem with emotion regulation. You are most likely to put off certain tasks. Find a pattern. Do you fear failure or are you passionate about a particular subject? You can identify the problem and address it directly.
5. Start with small steps
Entrepreneurs who are successful are often very hard on themselves. Entrepreneurs need to be able work long hours, be resilient, and be able think long-term. It’s important to start small when building self-discipline. If you are looking to work more than an hour without stopping, set a timer. You can start small and increase your self-discipline with time.
6. Delay Gratification
You can be responsible and happy, but not need to satisfy yourself immediately. Sometimes, we get too focused on the immediate reward and think we have enough. Try to delay everything–especially with your “wants”–and see how long you can last knowing that you still have more to do and the reward will take time. As a bonus, you’ll gain patience and endurance.
7. Make and follow a schedule
You can build self-discipline by creating and following your own schedule. Entrepreneurs believe that they must work 50 hours per week to be successful, so they don’t bother creating a schedule. You can accomplish the same amount of work in as little as 30-40 hours if you are disciplined. I recommend a 6- to 8-hour block of work that corresponds with your peak productivity levels.
8. Maintain a Daily Task List
A daily task list should be kept organized. You can track your tasks, create a schedule and prioritize them. To do this, I use my calendar app. I list my tasks by date separately so that I don’t forget anything. This will help you stay organized and accountable.
9. Change your mindset
Self-discipline means the ability to keep your promises to yourself. You can only master self-discipline by failing hundreds of thousands of time. You can be kind to yourself and help others. This paradigm shift will reduce the negative emotions and thoughts that you experience when you fail. It will also give you the strength to continue failing.
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