Search

How to Start a New Discipline

If you want to start a new discipline don't do it by setting a goal.


Instead, aim to fall in love with the practice; as in, the act of doing it.


Examples:

Start running with the aim to be a person who loves running. Tell people - I'm someone who runs! Remove the shame & guilt - that's never a sustainable motive.


Start eating healthily with the aim of being a person who loves their body. Do things throughout the day that back this belief up.


Don't aim to read 100 pages a day, aim to fall in love with reading.


Can we put things in place to help us fall in love with the practice? Absolutely. If you want to read more, do #readfor30, for example. But the aim isn't to just make it through the slog of another 30 minutes of reading, it's to fall in love with reading; for the alarm to go off after 30 minutes & for you to want to sneak another five minutes in.


Team your new discipline up with things you love. Love a bubble bath? Read in the bath. Like candles & a cup of tea? Make a tea, light your candles & get your book. Love first through association.


Disciplines should be identity-based not goal-oriented.


This way, we don't limit ourselves with a goal on a good day, & we don't discourage ourselves with unmet goals on a bad day.


Love the practice.


Here, I'll let you into my brain for a second. My mornings historically:

My alarm goes off. I've set it early so that I can get up to pray & read my Bible before work. I'm exhausted. Work is incredibly busy at the moment & any downtime I do get comes late at night & is spent mindlessly scrolling through social media. I contemplate getting up. I know it's the right thing to do. I give in. It's OK, I'll have an extra hours' sleep now & have some time with God tonight instead.

I just about make it through the day. With no mental energy left, I turn to the numbing entertainment of my phone rather than the refreshment of God. Oh dear, another day without reading my Bible. I'm a terrible Christian. I'll try again tomorrow. Morning comes & I choose the extra hour again.


Change your narrative. Ban shame. Love the practice. I now love my mornings with God. I have a cup of tea, nice breakfast, calm music. The best.

0 comments

Recent Posts

See All

As we continue our brief nosedive into the question of ‘Is Jesus actually real?’ we’re going to look at my favourite Christian apologist (and possibly the most influential apologist of modern times) C

The first step on our journey of living like Jesus is real is to ask the question, ‘is He?’ Sounds obvious, I know, but the whole Christian faith hinges on whether or not Jesus lived, died, and was re