A discipline is a practice that instructs and produces moral, mental or physical improvement.
Spiritual disciplines are those practices that increase and improve one’s spiritual life. Dallas Willard is a philosophy professor and is currently founding the Institute for Christian Spiritual Formation. He once wrote something about spiritual disciplines that applies generally as well:
“We can even lay it down as a rule of thumb that if it is easy for us to engage in a certain discipline, we probably don’t need to practice it. The discplines we need to practice are precisely the ones we are not ‘good at’ and hence do not enjoy.”
It makes sense. Something easy to do probably won’t be difficult enough to challenge growth. The areas where we most often need to grow are areas we’d rather not address, and hence those disciplines aren’t enjoyable.
What disciplines would most benefit you in your personal and professional life? Pick a discipline that isn’t easy and isn’t something you’d necessary like to do…but you know will instruct and grow you when you choose to follow it.
When I read your blog entry, I thought of this article I’d read recently about ‘disciplines’. I think you’ll like it as well.