In this post I am going to introduce you to a small book that can change your life in 10 days. That is not a marketing gimmick – I used this book about 3 years ago and it changed my life in exactly the same way it can yours.
The book is called Self Discipline in 10 Days by Theodore Bryant (Amazon) and I only just remembered it, otherwise I would have written about it earlier. Having read through it again, it’s actually even better than I remembered.
There are two important things to know about this book:
1) It can completely change the way you think and act with regards to self-discipline and can basically eliminate procrastination – making you way, way more productive in every area of your life.
2) For this to work you must read the book in order, do the exercises and do not skip ahead.
Remember: YOU HAVE TO DO THE EXERCISES FOR IT TO WORK!
Now here’s a bit of background:
Throughout high school and into my first two years of university, I had average at best and terrible at worst self-discipline in pretty much every area of my life. (The only exception was the gym and diet associated with gym goals.)
But when it came to everyday life activities and “boring” chores like washing dishes, laundry, cleaning, and especially school, I was an extreme procrastinator. In high school I was always late for class, and when university started I just stopped going to class altogether.
I would leave school assignments until the very last minute – and at every possible opportunity pull an all-nighter to write entire papers the night before they were due.
Around 2012 was when I first made an effort to get better grades, and this was the first time I read this book. I think it was actually on the plane journey back to school at the beginning of my third year. That year a lot of things started to spiral up for me and the following semester was the first time I actually got a decent GPA (3.5).
I would later cement really solid discipline by almost killing myself trying to get a 4.0 GPA but this book is what got me from:
- Extreme procrastinator in most major areas of my life
- Many days where nothing/next to nothing gets done
- Putting off chores and errands for days or weeks
- Being able to do a small number of very important things consistently every day
- Very few or no days where nothing/next to nothing gets done
- Doing chores and errands quickly or immediately
Needless to say these changes made a huge difference in my life.
But enough about me – here’s a brief overview of the book:
Part 1 is an introduction which describes how the book is structured as well as some basic concepts and the framework for understanding self discipline. It also includes an excellent breakdown of the part of every person that is resisting self-discipline, which the author nicknames “Hyde”. Part 2 is Days 1-5 of the program, which are about understanding and facing the fears that prevent you from having strong discipline. These fears are:
- Fear of Failure
- Fear of Success
- Fear of Rejection
- Fear of Mediocrity
- Fear of Risks
This section was by far the most impactful part of the book for me, and in fact it was the only part I remembered until I flipped through it again to write this post. I had never examined my fears like this before and it was a powerful piece of introspection.
Again: for any of this to work you have to do the exercises. They only take about 5-10 minutes, and the author even says not to take longer than 15.
Part 3 is Days 6-10, which is about self-defeating subconscious beliefs and tools to help you overcome them. This section of the book is also extremely valuable.
There is then a concluding section that brings it all together. If you suffer from procrastination or self-discipline issues at all, I cannot recommend this book highly enough.
Self Discipline in 10 Days costs $20 on Amazon but may be able to find a digital copy online somewhere. Read it, do the exercises, and watch your self-discipline issues disappear. Good luck!