It’s funny.  When I googled the definition of discipline – the most prevalent definitions that popped up involved some form of training  “through the use of punishment or forced obedience“.   Why does the concept of being disciplined or having discipline — infer that it was achieved through punishment??  Is that how becoming disciplined happens?

Whenever I think of discipline, I cant help but picture someone Japanese.  Like a samurai.    Over the weekend I saw the Tom Cruise movie, “The Last Samurai” — and that movie was lovely, stunning, sad, and deep.  I know it’s “Hollywood”, but the movie theme touched a chord with me.  Discipline.  It didn’t seem to come through punishment for the samurai.  It came naturally.   It came through the act of “Doing”.  “Doing” and “doing again”……searcing for the art of perfection at whatever they did.  Sword play, bow and arrow, war…yes….but also in pouring tea, bathing, housekeeping, dressing.  Discipline.   To continue “doing” until you perfect your art, your craft.  There was such a sense of satisfaction and peace that came with “Doing”.    All the unsettled anxiety and inner torture that comes from “not Doing”…..appears to just fade away.   I think….the “doing” must kill the anxiety of “whether you can do it or not.”    That anxiety serves no purpose anymore.  When you are already “doing”…..what’s to worry about?
I finally found the definition I was expecting — or, I should say…. the one that best fit my expectation — ie,  what the “word” meant to me.
discipline:    training that corrects, molds, or perfects the mental faculties or moral character
Ahhhh HA!  Discipline, the art of “doing with habit”  — is exercise for the mind!!!   THIS makes sooo much sense to me, it’s not even funny.  This is why — when I was running religiously, (or shall I say, “with discipline”) during my Marathon training — my mind became rock solid.  Oh sure, I had my doubts — but I conquered them on a daily basis. Like kicking stones out of my way on the street.  I expected to conquer them.  Everyday.  No oatmeal between the ears.  I became a warrior.  A samurai of the road.
So today — I’ve decided to begin again with a disciplined approach.  Do Not Try.  Just Do!  And then do it again.  And again.  Until you can’t remember a time when you didn’t “do” it.
Ciao for now….Diane

About Diane

Ciao! My name is Diane. I'm a wife, a mom, a working professional, and a Weight Watcher from New Jersey. I started blogging in 2011, at 45 years old, when I was training for my first Half Marathon at Rutgers on April 22, 2012. Since then, I've lost 80 pounds, completed my Half Marathon goal and gone on to train for and run my very first Full Marathon. On Jan 13, 2013, I ran the Disney Marathon in Orlando, Fl! What an incredible day. As the saying goes -- "The person who starts the race is not the same person who finishes the race." I am forever changed! So now we move on to the next phase of this journey! Come along. We're in this together!! Ciao for now!

3 Responses »

  1. discipline … the pursuit of personal excellence, and the commitment to see it through, to the exclusion of all extraneous distractions.

    • I l.i.k.e. your definition Scott. It’s surprising what a bad rap discipline gets from Merriam Webster and her dictionary friends!!

      pursuit of personal excellence. yup. i’m all about it!

      Hope you are well out on the island!

      • We as members
        train our spirits and bodies
        according to the strict code
        we as members
        are united in mutual friendship
        we as members
        will comply with regulations
        and obey instructors
        this is the membership oath at the tae kwon do school where I started some thirty years ago, and where I finally returned now that I’m back on Long Island. no where in this membership oath is the word discipline used. but any member of any martial arts school knows discipline. without it, we are ordinary … just like everyone else. with it, we are supernatural.
        the discipline I learn at the tae kwon do school is simply another form of the discipline you learned while training for the half and full marathons. discipline is discipline. acceptance makes discipline your friend, for life, for ever.

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