We mostly hear the word discipline and I think it has been repeated well enough in our hears probably from primary schools to high schools and then college for us to understand what it means. Just so I don’t err on the side of assumption, I will simply say discipline, based on what I looked up in the Oxford electronic dictionary also means controlled behaviour. It means self control and a state of order. Now I like these words because they simple help me to put in proper perspectives the meaning of personal leadership.
Since I already spoke about character and personal leadership, let me say that it is very possible to have some good characters and still not be disciplined. Someone may have character enough not to steal but may not be disciplined with women, money, alcohol and many other things. I think the point is clear. If you are going to lead other people, I have constantly said that you must first be able to lead yourself and one great thing about anyone who leads him or herself well is self control. As a leader there will be things you like so much and you want them badly but when you have a controlled behaviour you will know that you are either not supposed to go for them or that you must have them in moderation. Apart from the things that you like, there could be things that you don’t like and are happening around you. You may fell like reacting but when you are about to react, personal leadership reminds you that there is a way to react to things. You do not just open your mouth and vent all your anger just the way you feel things. If you get too angry and uncontrolled you can destroy things. You get get yourself into trouble in just a few minutes and you might remain in it for years!
You have to be very disciplined with your life. Discipline with your speech is also something you cannot do without. The Bible says death and life are in the power of the tongue (Proverbs 18:21). And that really makes sense when you think about the law court. A man’s destiny before a judge is mostly decided by what he and his advocates say and are able to prove. Going away from the court scenerio, what you say is what you get in life! What you say can bring you abundance or get you into trouble. So if you are going to lead other people, first learn how to lead your mouth correctly!
I think I can also say discipline is this context also means that you should not let your mouth run faster than your brain! Don’t say something before thinking about it or realizing it was something you should not have said! Don’t let your hands and legs also outrun your brain! Don’t act before thinking and don’t get yourself into a before before thinking about how you ought to have done things differently. In practical terms, discipline could be as simple as not drinking more than you should. It could be not taking more than you are permitted to from resources or money in particular. It can be knowing when to start talking, stop talking or to just keep shut and listen. And in some other cases, it could be knowing when to deny yourself of certain pleasures! Please note that some of these things that you are to be disciplined about are mostly not illegal things but they can get you so distracted that you lose focus in life or get too deep into trouble!
Anyone who is not disciplined should not become a leader. If you become a leader without first leading yourself through the course of discipline, you do so at your own peril. Think of so many leaders that you know around the world who have gotten into one trouble or the other. Some of them got into trouble because of lack of discipline. Your ambitions as a leader are noble but never try to lead others without you being first disciplined.
Fola Daniel Adelesi
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