How to build self control

Building self control and discipline is imperative to having the life that you want. Because the hard choices that you make in the present will be rewarded in the future.

‘Through discipline comes freedom’ – Aristotle

But you need to have self discipline to make these hard choices.

These choices are hard because we are all subjected to temptation. In the form of cheap dopamine (a neurotransmitter that plays a role in pleasure, motivation, and learning) hits.

Agents of instant gratification and dopamine include:

porn, social media, alcohol, cigarettes, junk food.

These cheap dopamine and instant gratification hits cause peaks in your dopamine levels (which you haven’t earned).

After which, your dopamine levels decrease to a lower level than before.

This will result in you feeling Lazy, Depressed & Unmotivated.

You then crave whatever gave you the previous dopamine high so you can feel better again.

This causes a cycle of peaks drops and cravings – and voila you have an addiction!

So to help you restore your dopamine to a natural level, causing you to feel:

Driven, Excited’ Motivated.

It would be prudent to implement a dopamine detox

How do you do this?

Have a think about what sources of cheap dopamine you are addicted to.

Social media? Porn? Drugs? Alcohol? Cigarettes? Junk food?

Choose the 3 you are most addicted to (these will be the ones you want to remove them the least – meaning your addiction is strongest with these) and remove them.

If this is your first detox aim for 48 hours. If you’ve done it before aim for at least 2 weeks.

You can then do this many times, each time increasing the duration of the detox.

To make this easier I advise you to remove temptations.

Load web blockers, app blockers remove alcohol from the house and don’t go to the shop you usually get your cigarettes from.

Because if you’re surrounded by temptation it is only a matter of time before you crack. And everyone has a breaking point.

Replace these synthetic, cheap means of dopamine and instant gratification with natural ones (ones you earn).

Getting enough sleep, exercising, listening to music, meditating, and spending time in the sun. Are all ways to boost dopamine.

Then get yourself some accountability; tell someone you trust that you are doing this detox.

Ask them to help you remove temptations and check in on you.

It’s important that you know that this will be uncomfortable! And it is in embracing this discomfort you are building discipline.

You are going against your dopamine which wants you to give in to your vices.

Stay strong!

Embrace the discomfort and remind yourself of the value that this detox will create and the benefits that will come from it!