Discipline and Purpose – D.O.S.E. (3)

I’ve been touching in this blog series on what I call the pleasure of productivity. It’s a series on my father’s acronym, D.O.S.E.

Discipline! Organize! Simplify! Energize!

I heard those words a lot growing up. However, it took me a while to figure out how to apply it to my life.

And I’m actually still doing that. I haven’t mastered this. I’ve got more processing to do. This is one reason I love blogging. I get to work this out and have you join me along the way!

My last entry touched on the nature of discipline and its vital role in our lives. But discipline must be tied to purpose. So here we explore the reason of your existence.

Ha! Right. Well – actually yes. Everyone exists for something. The debate is over what that something is.

What’s your purpose? Many people have never actually paused and asked themselves that question. Don’t just jump to the “right answer” because you’ve practiced this in Sunday School. Take a little time and let the question marinade in your mind… then get out your paper and pen.

I’ve been receiving some coaching recently. And if there’s one thing I’ve learned it’s the massive importance of getting clarity from the cerebral clutter that kills your creativity. And writing things down is the answer.

My tendency has always been to only start writing things down when I’m getting to the details. To-do lists, calendar reminders, notes in class, etc… But that’s a fatal mistake.

If you’re an artist or a creative person, you’ll be very familiar with a mind that cannot seem to stop “dreaming”. The dreamers that have a hard time getting things done must learn the discipline of daily brain disposal. The reason they’re all over the place is that they haven’t learned to get out of their head. Write it down and move on!

So… You need a purpose statement. There are the large, life-long purpose statements, and there are the little day-to-day purpose statements. A creative person needs both. Be honest with yourself, asking two important questions:

1) What is my purpose?

  • Think, pray, write. Think of your “big idea” purpose first. Write it down in numerous ways, but end up with something clear and concise. Don’t get to the how. Just ask why.

2) How does my life reflect that?

  • Here you will get specific and how you are uniquely gifted. Think of your talents. Think of your job. And always tie it to your purpose. Write down as much as possible here. This is the how.

Discipline must be tied to vision. If it’s not you’ll eventually peter out…

Next I’ll show you how I’m putting this together for my life as an example.