Here are the main reasons why you should cultivate self-control in order to become successful. While confidence is important for effective leadership and communication, sometimes people rely too much on confidence and skimp on the hours they need to put in to develop what is called tacit knowledge.
Self-Control Generates Tacit Knowledge
Tacit knowledge is experience based knowledge which is somewhat intuitive. It is different than knowledge found in books and is a part of what the book ‘Outliers’ touches upon. To become an expert it is said you need to put in 10,000 hours of work on a subject. What we are talking about is time.
When people are overconfident, they may feel they can put in as little effort as possible and still be successful. This can lead to a knowledge gap but it also delays the 10,000 hour milestone. When people replace self-control with self-confidence, they often miss some of the subtle nuances of the career path they are trying to master.
What Is Meant By Self-Control
So does this mean you need to make sacrifices of your personal time to become successful? Yes it does. When you develop a schedule and stick to it, you are eliminating distractions that will steal your mental focus all throughout the day. When you simplify the way you use your time, you will not be as scattered and you will generate a laser like focus that enables you to become more successful.
Where Most People Struggle With Self-Control
By and large the thing people struggle with regarding self-control is social conditioning. They feel obligated to do things that they receive invites to and quite frankly, they feel like they must live up to a certain image of how they spend their weekends and evenings. People that are able to reorganize their time and their friendships realize that it takes a lot of personal self-control to retrain your brain.
Yes, that means you will need to pass up on some social gatherings and holiday parties but as your brain creates new neural connections that are deeply ingrained habits, your success will happen quicker. Inevitably the self-control will develop a deeper sense of self confidence. When you really know your stuff, you speak calmly and with assuredness, not just with confident charm.
The people around us are the largest distraction that keep us from having self-control but it is our minds that allow those people to distract us. The closest relationships are the ones that affect our use of time the most and often times we rely on those people’s opinions of us to have, you guessed it, self-confidence. If we start to carve out time the way that will allow us to work more efficiently, those people might not understand why we have less time for them.
How To Create Self-Control
Self-control means operating independently of what most people do. It means you will evaluate if the decisions other people make is in your best interest for your one goal. When you decide to pass up on socializing with people who do not share your common interests and instead attend a class to learn about your craft, you are exercising self-control.
When you decide to read a book about your work instead of watch your favorite TV series, you are exercising self-control. When you decide to make healthy lifestyle decisions such as regular exercise, adequate sleep and healthy food and beverage choices, you are exercising self-control that will lead to success.
Why Self-Control Creates Even More Success Than Self Confidence
Self-Control In All Areas Affect Your Success
What people often fail to see is how other areas of their life affect their career. When they don’t plan their budget properly and over extend themselves financially, it will affect their career as well. When they are not showing self-control in their social, financial, spiritual, or romantic lives, it affects the amount of energy they have to give to their career.
Our emotions are drained when we let confidence lead our lives. When we feel a sense of entitlement to a very important role, it can lead to poor decisions in other areas of our lives. Let’s say someone is so confident that they feel like they no longer need to study about their job. They don’t feel a need to continue their education because they feel like they know it all.
When it comes down to it, the details, the small details even will shine light on a person’s lack of knowledge. Over confidence will come to a head when someone is needed to answer important questions, solve difficult problems or manage a group of people. If someone has not been focused on the task at hand and fully immersed in their work, they are likely to falter, not have the information needed or give incorrect advice.
Self-control is generated by a combination of training, experience and time management. When a person sees their life holistically and realizes that all of their choices do affect their success, they will work to manage their mental stress appropriately and look more logically at their skillsets.
Self-Control Creates a Stronger Foundation
When people are not leaning on their confidence or charm to gain success they build a more solid foundation to work from. A true leader is not easily influenced by the thoughts and actions of others although they must understand why and how others operate so they can communicate with them and motivate them. When a leader exercises self-control, they are able to overcome the distractions that steal time from the less determined people.
The foundation of success is created through self-reflection, mentorship, on the job experience and continual training. If we only have 24 hours in a day and 7 days in a week, we must scrutinize how we use our time and how much our day we are able to focus on the task at hand. Here is an example, if you do not exercise self-control in your diet and always eat donuts for breakfast, your brain will run out of nutrients and not function at a sustained rate.
Overtime this lack of self-control will compound and lower the percentage of time you were able to learn and retain information. If your mind in distracted by 2pm because you ate sugar and empty calories for breakfast and lunch. You will lose the last 4 hours of each day because of poor dietary choices.
Self-Control Compounds Over Time
Food choices are an easy example to show how self-control can create success and retrain the brain but the challenges for most people are a consortium of choices that they may feel over confident about. Perhaps it’s that they are confident they can perform their job without continuing education so they perform the same job for five years with minimal effort. The person who enrolls in night classes, reads diligently and attends workshops and seminars to grow their knowledge base, will most likely have more valuable skills than the same person who only runs on their confidence.
Confidence is what instills in people the ‘live in the moment’ or ‘instant gratification’ mindset which breeds impatience and lack of self-control. When people see how they may be overconfident in certain areas, they are able to see where they can improve. Often times over confidence comes from people around us telling us how great we are. Maybe we performed well in school so we think we will naturally be great at everything we do.
The Brain Will Atrophy If Not Stimulated
Anyone that has been in the working world for a few years realizes that self-control is probably the most important success factor. When we graduate from school, have more free time and most likely more money, the tendency people have is to get fancy homes and cars and lose that self-control that they exercised with their school work. The brain is affected by this as well. When we are no longer in school, our brain begins to atrophy. Our reading skills and our vocabulary decay if they are not used.
People that exercise self-control and continue to stimulate their brain instead of just slacking off will find that their brain remains sharp and their learning skills do as well. This is something most people are not told or prepared for after graduating but it is certainly an important facet of self-control.
Hopefully you now see the importance of independent thinking, regular mental stimulation and meticulous time management. If you want to develop a deep sense of self confidence that will help you become successful instead of false self-confidence, exercise self-control.
Photo credit: Unsplash.com