I am painfully aware of the things I do on a daily basis. I am so aware, that I
quickly know when I am not doing what I should be doing. However, I am still not
able to choose differently.
Working without a normal 9-to-5 job and freelance is probably the best and worse
thing one can do for their productivity. On one hand it gives you the most
freedom to work on what you want to be working on and that can be done with
passion and full steam ahead, without having to conform to the regular hours of
a 9-to-5, without having to schedule meetings around those normal work hours,
and with the freedom to take a day off whenever you feel like it. But it also
comes with the struggle that you are the only one that has the power to keep the
discipline and get the tasks done.
I just went through one of those days where I didn’t get started on the right
foot. It’s one of those days where I spiral from Netflix to Twitter, then into
Instagram, from there to Porn, and why not take a peek into the dating app and
see if I can swipe a couple more people?
This is an incredibly vicious cycle. It’s a cycle of doom and destruction.
There are a lot of desires that are painfully visible when I look at the things
that I spent my time with. Netflix, Dating, Twitter, Porn, and Instagram? They
are all about some form of connection or relationship. But they are the instant
gratification version. The one that is pleasurable in this moment, but hurts
afterward, and it doesn’t actually change the situation at hand.
I am not uneducated. I know the TED talks, articles, and podcasts that talk
about these kinds of things. I know the funny video with the Marshmallow and the
children where they test who can hold out for a bit to get a second one. I also
know that those that wait for the second one have a tendency to do better in
life later on because they can delay their gratification.
I also know about NoFAP, social media detox, more fitness, and getting the most
painful tasks done in the morning. All those are not specifically new to me and
yet in that moment, when it happens, the moment where my brain says: “why don’t
you just enjoy one episode of this TV Show before heading into work”. I am
simply not able to not do withstand the temptation.
The desire is too big, it’s consuming, it feels like it’s the only way to get
what I desire.
So here I am, trying to break the cycle again. Aware that if I just do the work,
get out of debt, move forward in life, workout more often, get the critical
tasks done first, eat healthily, don’t consume so much, and stay on track… Then
I know that my life will actually be that much better for it.
I will get to know freedom again from a whole new perspective. I will probably
be able to meet more people again, indulge in new relationships in the real
world, go out on adventure travels, and explore.
All of those good things will happen, they are pretty much inevitable, and there
is a clear path right in front of me:
- Get up early (around 5:30).
- Work out more often (Running and Freeletics).
- Meditate & stretch my body with Yoga.
- Envision my future and read my affirmations.
- Do the client work first.
- Single-tasking with focus.
- Stay away from instant gratification (Netflix, Porn, Social Media, Dating
- Read more in evenings (Kindle or actual Paperback).
- Go to bed early (around 22:00).
Simply deciding this trajectory probably is not enough, after all, I have tried
it like a hundred times already, but I am not giving up! I may need to start
again, over, and over again — that’s ok! I will retry as many times as is
With that said, I recently heard that:
Self Discipline is just training. You do it every day. You work out that muscle.
You don’t give in. You put on a little more weight. And sometimes: you even take
a rest day.
Eventually, you can follow the sign that points towards “happily ever after”.
But it’s your decisions that will either lead you on that path or you off the
So stay motivated, try again, and make a plan. Create a vision that is worth
living and motivate yourself through that experience. And most importantly: make
sure to enjoy the process no matter what.
Photo by Ben Rosett