Stephen Covey, author of the best seller and a great book “The seven habits of highly successful people”, says that a huge difference between humans and animals is that in between a stimulus and the response we have the freedom to choose. I believe self-control is when we exercise that freedom.
Many people think of self-control as physical and mental. Although when we really look at it, all self-control is mental. It’s our thoughts and decisions that drive our actions.
Part of this is impulse control. I remember as a child I would have a thought and act on it without thinking about consequences. I work with many children who have the same challenge.
Another part is controlling our thoughts, emotions and things we may say. Anthony Robbins talks about standing guard at the door to your mind. The more we can filter what we let in our mind the easier it is to control our emotions. If we start each day or end each day by watching all the negativity of world on the news, it’s very challenging to keep a positive outlook on the world.
Imagine if instead you read for 30 minutes out of a good book, something that is going to help you feel uplifted or support your vision of an ideal life. What if at the end of the day you thought about all of the people and situations you have in your life that you could be grateful for. I promise that with these habits, your outlook on life will be much more positive.