Monday, July 19, 2010

Motivation Lacking

On days like today I start hearing the word "discipline" in my head.

I can never quite decide if it's a dirty word, or a positive trait.

I heard it a lot going up.  It was touted by my dad as "the" character trait to develop.  "If you're just disciplined..."  Everything was approached with this sort of regimented plan.  Attacked if you will.  Struggling in your prayer life?  Discipline.  Want to lose weight or eat right?  Discipline.  You name the question, the answer was very often discipline.

It's not a word I like.  To me it's a word that carries connotations of failure.  Of not measuring up.  Of a regimented, planned, boring, lacking in deep experiences kind of life.

And I rebelled against that.  Especially in my spiritual life.

Because I was tired of feeling like a failure. 

I convinced myself that discipline was a dirty word, and that I'd just do what I felt like with life.

Trouble is, I usually didn't feel like doing any of those things that are good for me.

A friend told me recently that the discipline I was applying in some areas of my life was good to see, that it was a positive trait.

I reminded her that I wasn't fond of that word.

She pointed out again that it was a quality worth developing.

I've been thinking on that.

I'm thinking about it today, when the motivation to study for my first anatomy midterm is sorely lacking.  When I'm not feeling well, and what I really want to do is to crawl back into bed and sleep for a couple of days.  When I'm sitting here writing a blog post instead of reviewing anatomy notes, or vacuuming, or working on a statistics assignment, or a reading assignment for the Christian leadership course that I'm also taking.

I'm thinking I'd better apply myself, and use all the tricks in the book to make it work.  Rewards, little breaks.  Whatever it takes.  Because that midterm is tomorrow, and this grade is important.  How I do in these classes has an effect on my future.

So, I'm off to drum up some motivation.  And, if all else fails, I'll force the issue.

Maybe discipline isn't such a dirty word afterall?