Self-Discipline... When you read that I am sure the thoughts that coincide with it makes you cringe. Faults flood through your mind of all the things you "should" be doing instead of the things you are doing. Yes, it has a bit of a negative ring to it but I like it. Those thoughts thrust me forward into becoming more streamlined, more purposeful and in the end more present and full.
I am looking toward the end result that has me stretching in the now. To say no to things that might be self indulgent in the present, but hurtful in the future. And I am feeling the burn but just like a workout where each muscle cries out for mercy, the strength if fueling. It launches you into a continual motion which has you ready for more. Growth is hard but oh so worth it!
So what does self discipline look like for me? Well, right now it is a work in progress but it has a basic structure. Now I have never been one for ordering my day, or a fan of structure but I have found that as a mom of small kids, it works for me. Yeah, having kids has made me a bit of a control freak and most of my friends who knew me before kids would shudder at the thought of me being so rigid but so be it!
Time is my friend and I have become a watcher of the clock.
I go through periods of time where I get up early, lounge around and enjoy my cup of coffee, read a bit before others stir and then there are times when I have children climbing all over me with smiles and giggles as I am thrown out of my cozy peaceful slumber. I love snuggling up to my kids and on weekends, we get to enjoy sleepy mornings all warm and nestled into our bed. But during the week days I HAVE to get up and going before them or the rest of the day goes downhill and fast! Yep, I start at 5am. Remember my word is self discipline?
Now before you get all worked up, this is MY day. What works for me might not be so hot for you! All I know is that I was sick of feeling like I was behind all day because I had to get these mundane tasks done. I didn't like having my kids wandering around without a purpose while I was getting my act together!
So in that hour from 5-6, I read, have my quiet time, drink my coffee and just be. By 6 I need to be in the shower just to beat the kids. I get fully ready then I can chill again until the kids start to rouse. They start their day with Accountable Kids and we usually start breakfast around 8 and school by 9. Now for the bulk of the day I am not so disciplined about times and schedules. School has a good flow to it and there is no need to be so rigid. Jake has his rhythm with naps and we are able to get things done while he is sleeping and so far it is working. Our afternoon is usually spent playing outside with friends and it has been great that our kids don't just veg in front of the TV. At night they are ready to fall into bed exhausted from the day of being active. Then for me to be worth anything, and which I am still working on is getting to bed at a decent hour! Yeah, that is still a work in progress... My hope and goal is to be in bed by 9 asleep by 10 but laundry calls and "just one more thing" usually has me up until 10:30 or so.
I have found out that God has a sense of humor with this whole waking up early gig. There are some days where I just can't seem to bring myself to wake up early. I hit the snooze and then hit it again. But then those are the mornings when Jake, my really good sleeping baby wakes up at 5:15 to force me out of the bed! He goes right back to sleep but it just confirms to me that yes, I need to be up. I always say that a baby is God's alarm clock. I never regret it once that first cup of coffee is in my hand. Speaking of coffee, can I tell you that I am oh so thankful for a timer on my pot? Ok... just sayin'.
Well, there are so many other facets to this whole self-discipline journey that I am on but for now, this order to my day is one of the first things for me to grasp a hold of and get comfortable with. Then I will share some of the other stretching and growing things that is working inside of me. Life is messy and it is hard. I can't make sense of it all but I know the Creator of life has it all figured out. I am thankful that He is drawing me closer to Him as I stretch and grow. Painful yes, but so refreshing and worth it in the end.