If you’re trying to bring a vision into reality the first part is the hardest. Why? Because you’ve got to overcome inertia in order to build momentum.
Motivational speaker, Zig Zigler likes to point out that the largest and most powerful locomotive in the world can be held in place by a one-inch block of wood. Placed in front of the eight drive wheels of the locomotive, the block will hold it motionless. Yet that same locomotive, with a full head of steam, can crash through a steel-reinforced concrete wall that is five feet thick.
Zigler concludes that the “action habit can do the same thing for us!” If there is one thing everyone needs, it’s the discipline required to develop the right kind of habits … habits that will enable us to live with consistency and diligence.
The Apostle Paul understood the importance of discipline when he said, “Do you not know that in a race all the runners run, but only one gets the prize? Run in such a way as to get the prize. Everyone who competes in the games goes into strict training. They do it to get a crown that will not last, but we do it to get a crown that will last forever. Therefore I do not run like someone running aimlessly; I do not fight like a boxer beating the air. No, I strike a blow to my body and make it my slave so that after I have preached to others, I myself will not be disqualified for the prize” (1Corinthians 9:24-27).
Every effective leaders knows the power of personal discipline. As followers of Christ our spiritual lives form the core of our character. We’re to be like a runner or a boxer. A runner doesn’t stagger from one lane to another. He rivets his attention on the finish line and runs a disciplined race toward it. A boxer trains himself so he can absorb powerful blows without falling down. Similarly, Paul trained like a world-class athlete. Why? Because he wanted to have the self-control to finish the race.
If you want to be an effective leader, identify the habits you need to build into your life so you can lead with diligence. Knock the blocks out from under your wheels and get going. Disciplined habits will give you the momentum you need to not only move forward, but to get past the barriers you’ll encounter along the way.