Motivation Will Fail You. Discipline Will Not.

Authored by: Mark S.

  1. Eliminate all hope of motivation. Motivation will fail you, every time. Embrace Discipline instead.
  2. Discipline means showing up every day, at the same time, no matter what. Feelings are irrelevant – they don’t get a vote.
  3. It’s time to get aggressive. Face the Dragon and slay him. Get a fresh notebook and ink pen. Solely for this purpose. Right now.
  4. Write down all the massive overwhelming projects you have to do, and their due dates, on page one. Label it “Fall Projects” or something. “Write term paper,” “read 3 massive boring books,” “prepare for exam,” whatever.
  5. Break down these projects into smaller and smaller tasks, on page two. Keep breaking them down until the tasks are small and manageable. e.g., “Read a 500 page book in 14 days” becomes “read 36 pages (each day),” and so on.
  6. Write today’s date on page three. Then, write down the THREE most important of those small tasks you could do TODAY. Just pick three.
  7. Decide on which time you are going to work each day. Say, 1-6pm (to start). Set a reminder alarm in Google Calendar for 1-6 each day. Live by this calendar. This is sacrosanct time. NO ONE can distract you at this time.
  8. At 1 pm, open your notebook to page three. Do task number one. Don’t think about anything else. Put your phone into “do not disturb” mode. Crush the task.
  9. Cross out task one. Do task two. Crush the task.
  10. Cross out task two. Proceed to crush task three.
  11. If 6:00 rolls around and you haven’t finished task 3, that’s ok. Don’t fret. Can you finish it up in 10 in minutes? Then work til 6:10. Otherwise, just stop right there.
  12. Cross out the tasks you just finished on page two. Feels good, man!
  13. Write down tomorrow’s date back on page three. Write down the THREE tasks you can do tomorrow. Didn’t finish task 3? Then today’s task 3 becomes tomorrow’s task 1. Choose two more from page two, then.
  14. Now go and do something fun, guilt-free. You’ve earned it.
  15. Repeat, forever. Dominate and crush your work. Become a goddamned Professional.

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