Wednesday, January 21, 2015

Todays' Savings Secret.....Self Discipline...

 
This is something I tried to instill in my children from a young age, and I think I succeeded although it didn't appear so at the time.
 
Self discipline extends to so many areas of life.
 
The discipline to apply yourself to a task, be it study, work or housework, the discipline to say 'no', to do what you say you're going to do, to give back to the community, to exercise judgement on how and when to spend to improve your life and when to restrain yourself...it's all the same skill.
 
The ability to tackle a distasteful task, to uphold a promise, to do what's 'right' not what's 'comfortable', to manage your life and your money in a manner that recognises that delaying gratification actually means that you can enjoy the REALLY good things in life, rather than just the ordinary ones...it all comes down to self discipline.
 
I think all of us have a little child and a parent in our heads. The child goes 'ooo...I really want that new iPhone/new car/kitchen appliance...it's so cool and everyone else has one so I deserve one too'....and the parent goes 'no, you have an iPhone/car/kitchen appliance and it works perfectly well, and this is a want, not a need'. This internal conversation might go on for some time, be it seconds, minutes or months.
 
Eventually though, one will win out over the other. Sometimes our inner child wins, and that's okay occasionally. But it's when our inner Parent starts to win out more often, that we really see our lives leap ahead in ways we may not have expected.
 
Suddenly that overseas holiday (not paid for by credit card!) is a reality, that investment property is in our reach, and having money available for emergencies is something we don't even have to think about.
 
Exercising self-discipline is like exercising our body. It's hard at first and takes a great deal of conscious effort. But in time, the more often we say no to our Inner Child and listen to our Internal Parent, the easier it becomes.
 
Who will win your internal debate today...Child or Parent?
 
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10 comments:

  1. Mimi Im not sure Im good at self discipline exactly but I am ok at routine and planners, lists and so on... and these kind of work as strategies to make things happen. So they MAKE my self discipline seem much better!
    I totally agree we must train kids in this. And constantly work on ourselves. Doing something everyday towards the things we know we should be doing helps me as little bits add up amazingly. Very interesting stuff! xxx

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    1. Annabel, that is an interesting truth. None of us are naturally good at self discipline. It is an acquired skill. And things like your routines, lists, planners, diaries, reminders in our hand held devices, are the basis of self discipline really. But then it's one thing to have a note or a list or a reminder, and yet another to act upon it....lol! I haven't always been good at the 'acting upon it' part, but I'm far better now than I once was :) Doing a little every day and breaking those larger tasks or goals down into little baby steps is always a good strategy...x

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  2. Mimi, what a wonderful post.....there is so much truth and wisdom in it. More often than not in my head the parent wins the argument.
    Thankfully my husband has the child in him in that he has a lovely sense of fun. Whether it's a spouse or a child or a friend or a stranger, we need our hearts open to both conversations as you so rightly point out.
    So often people get stuck in terrible pits because everyone is telling them they deserve everything....the holiday on the credit card is a fine example. When you shared on a forum that we were on together that when we are shopping, what we see is not how our homes are. So that beautiful ornament is not going to look the same, as the surroundings, the lighting etc are different. That little truth has stayed with me and has enabled the door to be opened to such pleasures as a family holiday for us all in Japan last year, fully paid for without debt.
    The memories are still relished and talked about my children and us.
    Beautiful wise words! Thank you, Love Helen x

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    1. Thankyou Helen. You are so right in your observations that we need to be open to both our Inner Child and our Internal Parent. Both have value in our lives. But it is in the financial and very adult part of our lives that the Internal Parent needs to hold sway, I think. Whilst we can certainly indulge our Inner Child from time to time (as we do with all children), sometimes the Parent has to say 'no that's enough now'. That is the role of the parent after all. So yes, we all need to reign our Inner Child in sometimes, and let our Internal Parent take over. Because really, parents do know best don't they :)

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  3. This post has really blessed me tonight, Mimi. I practice self-discipline in many areas every day. I keep practicing, I fall down, and I keep at it. I have been trying to model this and teach this for years to my children. Such a good word for us all. Oh my you just summed up what my husband and I did last year...reigned it all in, traded-down (so-to-speak), got rid of extras, so we can trade up for the LIFE we really want. You've encouraged me so much with this post, thank you! Thank you!

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    1. Colette, thankyou for your lovely thoughts on this. It really is an ongoing internal debate isn't it. I think you should both be very proud...xxx

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  4. Boy, if this isn't the truth I don't know what is. I do think it gets easier with age.

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    1. You're spot on there Pattie! And I agree that it gets easier with age. The 'I want's' seem to fade a little and we become more content. Hopefully :) I'm glad you stopped by...x

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  5. I've noticed that my husband and I seem to have opposite Inner Child/Inner Parent traits in different areas. The Lord obviously knew what He was doing when He brought us together because we balance each other. But there are days when we are both having Inner Child moods...those are bad days to go shopping! ;)
    Blessings, Leigh

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  6. As I get older, the parent wins out more and more. ;) But every now and then the kid sneaks out and gets her way. ;)

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I love hearing from you! I always respond to comments, so don't be shy! Mimi xxx