The Pain of Discipline or The Pain of Regret


Would you prefer to grind today and smile tomorrow or enjoy today and regret tomorrow?

This is one question you must ask yourself if you wish to succeed and live a happy life at your older age.

As humans, we are bound to experience pain sometime in life; the type of pain you’ll experience is determined by your action and inaction today.

It was Jim Rohn who said, “We must all suffer from one of two pains: the pain of discipline or the pain of regret. The difference is discipline weighs ounces while regret weighs tons.”

So, you’ll either face the pain of discipline or the pain of regret but whatever your choice is will determine how fulfilled or not you’ll be in life.

I am writing this message today because I want you to make the right choice in life.

I will be very excited to see you very happy with yourself when you remember the choices you made in time past at your later stage in life.

But before I delve into the topic proper, I would like us to pretty much understand the main terms in this article and that is DISCIPLINE, PAIN and REGRET. We will only be sharing their meaning in the true contest of our discussion.

What is Discipline?

Discipline is simply a system of rules of conduct or method of practice. It also means training to improve strength or self-control. This definition is according to the WordWeb dictionary. Now I want you to take note of these keywords; rules of conduct and self control.

What then is Pain?

Something, someone or action that causes annoyance, inconvenience, or makes life more difficult. Now I want you to grab the word ‘inconvenience‘.

Over to Regret

  • Feel remorse for; feel sorry for; be contrite about
  • Feel sad about the loss or absence of

I believe we are on the same page now, so let us continue.

Discipline is the bridge between goals and accomplishment.

ReadWhat are your goals? Differentiate between goals and wishes

When one refuses to discipline oneself, leaving as it’s convenient without having the future in mind, one is bound to regret.

Self-discipline is being law to oneself.

The Pain of Discipline

As a young person, there is always the desire to acquire new things as soon as you start receiving your salary or making your first profit from that new business but do you think it’s a wise decision?

If you allow yourself to live in affluence and over the board at a young age, spending your earnings on those unnecessary stuff just so you impress your friends and neighbours, how can you grow and expand? How can you save to buy your first asset?

That is where the pain of discipline comes in.

Self discipline is the act of denying yourself something; controlling your impulses. It involves a lot of sacrifices and not just in the area of your finance but lifestyle too.

There is a popular saying; no pain, no gain.

Self discipline calls for the following;

  • STICKING to spend only a certain percentage of your earning for self.
  • Writing down your goals, making plans on how to achieve those goals, and ensuring that NOTHING will deter you from reaching that goal.
  • DECIDING to commit weekly, monthly or annually a certain percentage of profit earned into growing your business and standing by this no matter the challenge or urge to spend that money on something else.
  • SUBDUING your appetite to help you achieve something. Could be a perfect body shape or to attain a certain fitness level.
  • Not allowing yourself to hold grudge against anyone that offends you but rather forgive and move on with your life. (Bad energy is wasteful)
  • Also important, resolving to keep trying even when you failed repeatedly.

Knowledge comes, but wisdom lingers. It may not be difficult to store up in the comparatively short time, but the ability to form judgments requires the severe discipline of hard work and the tempering heat of experience and maturity. – Calvin Coolidge

Discipline is hard work and can be painful at times but I assure you, it’s worth it.

Do you know that self discipline comes with greater success at a faster rate?

Work hard. Through determination, self-focus and discipline, you can accomplish anything. – Kimberly Guilfoyle

How to Discipline Yourself

Discipline comes with having high self control and this could be hard for some individuals to achieve, but with the following tips, you can master the act of self discipline.

1. Understand your weakness: You should understand what your weaknesses are, we all are victims. When you do, try to subdue them by either cautioning yourself or avoiding whatever brings this weakness.

If for example you are an Instagram addict and you find that the social media platform takes most of your time and resources without adding any value, you may decide to delete the App from your phone. This way, you can concentrate on things that add value to you. If you can’t entirely delete the App, then try to limit visitation and also turning off any form of notification from the App to avoid distractions.

Be ready to take drastic decisions.

2. Set goals: Goals are plans we set out to achieve at a pre-determined time. Your goals must be clear and achievable. When you set a goal, make sure you set a time frame you wish to achieve that goal.

Cowboy Watch for the tiny front pocket

Achieving set out goals could be fun if it’s our hubby but tiring if it’s work. One thing you should learn to do is adding a bit of fun to whatever you’re doing. I do this a lot. You also need the trait of resolutely controlling your own behaviour while you are working to achieve a goal. This you can do through diligence and hard work.

3. Avoid temptations: You know that desire to have or do something that you know you should avoid, whatever that brings those desires, you need to avoid them.

You can avoid any form of temptation by staying away from their source. There is a proverb that says, “out of sight, out of mind“, meaning you soon forget people or things that are no longer visible or present.

As I mentioned in the number one point above, if a social media app is a distraction, delete it, likewise, if you have friends that make you spend unwisely or to live a life of profligacy, you need to stay away from them.

4. Healthy living: Health is wealth. And only a healthy person can work efficiently. You must take care of your body and keep fit at all times. Achieving a healthy living is cheap, all you need is discipline. Eat good food, take your dinner early and try to have an exercise routine. Veggies and plenty of water help to boost your body immune system. Regular check up is also advised to avoid sudden break down at work place.

5. Accept your mistakes: Mistake is inevitable. When you default at any task, hurt anyone or fall into any temptation, you need to forgive yourself and move on. You should tell yourself that no one is above mistakes. If you hurt your loved ones, speedily apologies and make amends. If they wrong you, forgive them and move on.

Why should you?

So you don’t lock yourself thinking about your mistakes, the people that hurt you or those you hurt.

Remember, if it was a mistake, take a lesson from it to avoid re-occurrence.

In the journey of life, no one is perfect and we keep learning every day.

6. Complete a task before moving to another: While you resolve to stick to a task and finish it before moving to another, it help you to not only achieve result but faster too. Do away with every distractions and other side commitments that will compromise your effort or deter you from meeting up with your set target at the stipulated time.

Coming to the pain of regret

When you refuse to discipline yourself, living life without having self laws, spending as you earn without course to save and invest for the future, allowing yourself to be distracted when you should be working, you are definitely going to live a life of regret.

If while your body is strong, you are working and not setting aside anything for future investments, when you get older and weaker, who and what will you fall to?

Your friends today may desert you tomorrow when they see you facing challenges. That is the bitter truth.

The pain of regret is the worst pain you can think of, this is especially because most times, there is no remedy.

It is therefore better for you to feel the pain of discipline than the pain of regret.

Remember, success separates people.

Don’t let your lifestyle today drain your future enjoyment.

Pay the prize today, it is better than paying at old age.

The ball is in your court. If you have few seconds, please kindly let me know through the comment box which you prefer, the pain of discipline or the pain of regret.

To your success.


Francis Nwokike

Francis Nwokike is a Social Entrepreneur and an experienced Disaster Manager. I love discussing new business trends and marketing tips. I share ideas and tips that will help you grow your business.

12 Responses

  1. Genevieve says:

    Thank you so much for his wonderful article. The choice is yours but think about the end, everything in life have a cons and pons

  2. Chaitanya Kate says:

    Pain of discipline

  3. Eze Anrhony says:

    It really nice having gone through this article!
    Thanks alot!

  4. Ayibadenyiefa jason Timothy says:

    Went through pain of regret by holding on to the past with unforgiving spirit and fell on my face and injured my left eye which is looking like a scared bruise which I’m hoping for it to go away with time but due to it being in my face I feel down whenever I look at my face or see my reflect in the mirror or glass

  5. Enerst Ticoleza says:

    This is and will always be one of the best articles ever written….”pay now and play later… Or play now and pay later…” It ever changed me… Thank you.

  6. Kon says:

    Thank you very much! This article made a lot of sense! This is exactly what i tell my people everyday!

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