Well, this is fun.
It’s 02:32am as I knock these words out on the keyboard.
My office window is so dark it looks like someone’s boarded it up on the outside like they do with derelict buildings. I can’t even see across the fields to the distant lights of Malvern resting on the side of the hills six or so miles away.
In a few hours, I’ll head out on the bike to my first personal training session for a couple of weeks or more.
Now to a lot of people, I guess that idea would seem preposterous. Few would entertain it and I can understand why. It’s counter-intuitive for sure given how out of synch my sleeping pattern is after a recent trip to the Far East.
Then again, most people need little encouragement to not do what needs to be done in order to get better results in life. I’ve been there myself, on more occasions than I care to recall and no doubt I paid a hefty price for my ignorance.
You see, the more you delve into success in any undertaking, the more you come to appreciate that the last thing we think we need, is more often than not, the very thing we need to do most.
In my current predicament, I’ve learned from experience that the molecular mechanisms controlling my circadian rhythm need “jolting” out of the time zone I’m no longer in (they’re currently 7 hours ahead of me) – and as counter-intuitive as it might seem to some, exercise, ideally in fresh air, goes a long way to doing the job.
If you’re not familiar with the circadian rhythm, it’s the biological clock ticking away in your cells. And this business of belting through multiple time zones at 600 mph and 35,000 feet is a relatively new phenomena in our lives – and certainly new to our cells. Even though we take it for granted today, the impact of flight on the molecular structures of our anatomy represents a major change in how we’ve historically lived.
We’ve only been flying, in terms of mainstream commercial operations, for 60 years or so. Our cells have evolved over 200,000 years, so 60 years is a nano-second, in relative terms, for cells to adapt to this major change in how we live.
No doubt, if we had another 200,000 years – which is extremely unlikely given our negligence towards the planet – our cells would no doubt evolve to adjust to our new found momentum. Mind you, by then, God knows how fast we’d be circumnavigating this incredible blue rock.
The circadian clock’s been in the news of late. Some clever-dick, big-brained scientific boffins by the names of Michael W. Young, Jeffrey C. Hall and Michael Rosbash, were awarded the 2017 Nobel Prize in medicine for their discoveries regarding how circadian rhythms are the way our bodies regulate the passing of the day and how it affects sleep, behaviour, body temperature, hormone levels and metabolism.
Their research also showed how disturbed sleeping patterns, like yours truly is subjected to at the moment (albeit, mercifully, temporarily) and those poor buggers who suffer from long periods of insomnia, can have significant detrimental consequences on the body, increasing the risk of a multitude of diseases by an alarming margin.
Yikes. Bring on the bike and workout.
Anyway, there’s another reason I’ll be heading out the door at 5.25am on this cold, dark, misty morning. I’m highly disciplined in this part of my life. In fact, I’m highly disciplined in many areas of my life and guess what, those are the areas I find I’m most successful in. Conversely, the areas I’m not so disciplined in (and believe me there are a number of those) – at least not in the way I should be – my results are, at best, average.
Discipline always brings success – even when it’s the kind of success you don’t want. If you’re disciplined in the habit of failing, you’ll be outstandingly successful at it. If you’re disciplined at being broke, you’ll be outstandingly successful at that too. Same goes for the opposite end of the equation.
That’s the thing about life and how it expresses itself through specific, unwavering natural laws; it doesn’t care either way – it just asserts itself. So it all comes down to you and what you choose to be disciplined in, in your life.
How do you know when you’re truly disciplined in something? You don’t have the debate in your head about whether you’ll do it or not. It’s a non-negotiable activity in your life.
I didn’t debate whether I’m going to my personal training session this morning. I didn’t find myself in two minds. I didn’t allow my predicament to question whether I’ll take the bike or opt for the car for the just under 12-mile round trip. It’s happening. And the only reason it’s happening is because I’ve made it a non-negotiable discipline in my life.
What are the non-negotiable disciplines in your life? Are they helping you, or hindering you? Because make no mistake, you are disciplined, even if you tell yourself you’re not. The problem, for many people, is they’re disciplined in activities that detract from their success. Results never fail to speak, even when their cries continually fall on deaf ears. Deeply ingrained habits of “averageness”, underachievement, struggle and failure remain as common place today as they’ve always been, despite the astonishing opportunities before us.
Where’s that showing up in your life?
What about your business? What’s it telling you in terms of the profit it generates?
What about your personal bank balance? What’s it telling you about your ability to make the choices you’d like to make in your life?
What about freedom, are you able to do what you’d like to do, when you’d like to do it, with the people who mean most to you?
Speaking of which, what about your primary relationships? Are they all they should be, mutually beneficial and nurturing, or are they stale, stagnant and “going through the motions”?
What about your physical health? What is your body telling you? What does it tell you when it stares back at you in the mirror? After all, once our physical health’s lost, everything else, aside for primary relationships, become irrelevant and insignificant.
The same applies, of course, to our psychological health. So what about your mind? If you asked your mind to describe the quality of input it receives – how well it’s fed, nourished, expanded, exposed to new input so it can create new output – what would it say?
And what about the consciousness you are – the life force within the shell – the source energy – the soul – the ghost in the machine – the “Qi” as the Chinese refer to it. What would your soul say to you about how much it’s heard? When was the last time you acted in accordance with your deepest desires? When was the last time you did anything to feed the soul you are, like you feed the body you occupy?
What are you disciplined at?
What are you cultivating in your life?
Are you sowing seeds of greatness, or sowing, season after season, the same old bitter crop?
Some day, a day that comes much sooner than we like to acknowledge, our seasons come to an end.
How long will you give it?
Because while you’re taking your time to get “ready” to be all you can be, life and the windows of opportunity it brings, moves on at a pace.
To prosperity and enlightenment.
Christian Simpson is the UK’s leading coach and mentor to business owners and entrepreneurs. For COMPLIMENTARY ACCESS to tried, tested and proven entrepreneurial success strategies, click here