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85 Discipline Quotes To Help You Succeed

Self-discipline is perhaps the most important characteristic that we all need to develop in order to be successful. 

Learning how to develop self-discipline opens up your full potential in pretty much every area of your life – health and fitness, career, finances, mindset, etc.

It’s the secret ingredient that is embedded into the daily routine of successful people. The people that we admire have mastered the skill of delaying short-term pleasure in favor of their long-term personal ambitions.

Studies routinely show that people who are more self-disciplined live happier lives, are less anxious and depressed, and ultimately fulfill their long-term goals more often than those who aren’t.

It’s hard to exert discipline and willpower to get things done and break bad habits that hold us back. But who ever said that getting the life you want was going to be easy?

It’s the art of making these difficult choices repeatedly that cultivate self-belief as you try to achieve your goals and dreams. With that being said, we can use a little push sometimes. 

Enter motivational discipline quotes. This article will contain an extensive list of discipline quotes from great minds that will motivate you to start living up to your potential.


How Do You Become Disciplined Quotes?

Do we sit down and work on the presentation or veg out on the couch and binge-watch our favorite Netflix show?

Do we press our snooze button and get an extra hour of sleep or do we rise out of bed and get our day started?

Do we stay at home and rest or push ourselves to the gym even though it’s the last thing that we feel like doing?

These choices determine the trajectory of our lives. The frustrating part about discipline is that it’s intuitive – we already know exactly what choice needs to be made. In each of these scenarios outlined above, it’s clear which decision is the right action. 

Discipline is about choosing what feels right instead of what feels easy. 

Because if you do what is easy, life will be hard. But if you do what is hard, life will be easy.

If you can learn to refuse the instincts pulling you towards comfort, you’ll achieve a sense of happiness and inner peace and calm that most people spend their entire lives searching for.


  • “The really important kind of freedom involves attention, and awareness, and discipline, and effort, and being able truly to care about other people and to sacrifice for them, over and over, in myriad petty little unsexy ways, every day.” ~ David Foster Wallace


  • “Self-respect is the root of discipline: The sense of dignity grows with the ability to say no to oneself.” ~ Abraham Joshua Heschel


  • “It’s better to do something today than nothing at all.” ~ Jordan Peterson


  • “Why is discipline important? Discipline teaches us to operate by principle rather than desire. Saying no to our impulses (even the ones that are not inherently sinful) puts us in control of our appetites rather than vice versa. It deposes our lust and permits truth, virtue, and integrity to rule our minds instead.” ~ John MacArthur Jr.


  • “Winners embrace hard work.  They love the discipline of it, the trade-off they’re making to win.  Losers, on the other hand, see it as a punishment.  And that’s the difference.” ~   Lou Holtz


  • “The successful person has the habit of doing the things failures don’t like to do. They don’t like doing them either necessarily. But their disliking is subordinated to the strength of their purpose.” ~ E.M. Gray


  • “Most talk about ‘super-geniuses’ is nonsense. I have found that when ‘stars’ drop out, successors are usually at hand to fill their places, and the successors are merely men who have learned by application and self-discipline to get full production from an average, normal brain.” ~ Charles M. Schwab


  • “Discipline yourself to do the things you need to do when you need to do them, and the day will come when you will be able to do the things you want to do when you want to do them.” ~ Zig Ziglar


  • “The great master key to riches is nothing more or less than the self-discipline necessary to help you take full and complete possession of your own mind.” ~ Napoleon Hill


  • “Success is created through the performance of a few small daily disciplines that stack up over time to produce achievements far beyond anything you could have ever planned for. Failure, on the other hand, is just as easy to slip into. Failure is nothing more than the inevitable outcome of a few small acts of daily neglect performed consistently over time so that they take you past the point of no return.” ~ Robin Sharma


  • “Self-discipline is an act of cultivation.  It requires you to connect today’s actions to tomorrow’s results.  There’s a season for sowing and a season for reaping.  Self-discipline helps you know which is which.” ~ Gary Ryan Blair


  • “It doesn’t matter whether you are pursuing success in business, sports, the arts, or life in general: The bridge between wishing and accomplishing is discipline.” ~ Harvey Mackay


  • “Find what you love to do, and go do it. You will never be successful until you have a plan, and the discipline and determination to go through with that plan.” ~ Julius Williams


  • “Mental toughness is many things and rather difficult to explain. Its qualities are sacrifice and self-denial. Also, most importantly, it is combined with a perfectly disciplined will that refuses to give in. It’s a state of mind – you could call it character in action.” ~ Vince Lombardi


  • “Successful, effective people are those who launch directly into their major tasks and then discipline themselves to work steadily and single-mindedly until those tasks are complete.” ~ Brian Tracy


  • “The undisciplined person falls into the same category as the lazy person who allows circumstances to control him rather than controlling circumstances.” ~ MaryAnn Diorio


  • “It’s nearly impossible to achieve focus and self-discipline separately. Being disciplined in your pursuit of long-term goals is only possible if you can consistently focus on the decisions and actions that lead to accomplishing those goals.” ~ Peter Hollins


  • “We must all suffer one of two things: the pain of discipline or the pain of regret and disappointment.” ~ Jim Rohn


discipline quotes - jim rohn


  • “Whether you call it Buddhism or another religion, self-discipline, that’s important. Self-discipline with awareness of consequences.” ~ Dalai Lama


  • “Talent without discipline is like an octopus on roller skates. There’s plenty of movement, but you never know if it’s going to be forwards, backwards, or sideways.” ~ H. Jackson Brown Jr.


  • “Until you have the inner discipline that brings calmness of mind, external facilities and conditions will never bring the joy and happiness you seek. On the other hand, if you possess the inner quality, calmness of mind, a degree of stability, within, even if you lack the various external factors that you would normally require to be happy, it will still be possible to live a happy and joyful life.” ~ Dalai Lama


  • “Men are anxious to improve their circumstances, but are unwilling to improve themselves; they therefore remain bound. The man who does not shrink from self-crucifixion can never fail to accomplish the object upon which his heart is set. This is true of earthly as of heavenly things. Even the man whose object is to acquire wealth must be prepared to make great personal sacrifices before he can accomplish his object; and how much more so he who would realize a strong and well-poised life.” ~ James Allen


  • “Self-discipline is a form of freedom. Freedom from laziness and lethargy, freedom from the expectations and demands of others, freedom from weakness and fear—and doubt. Self-discipline allows a pitcher to feel his individuality, his inner strength, his talent. He is master of, rather than a slave to, his thoughts and emotions.” ~ H.A. Dorfman


  • “There is no magic wand that can resolve our problems. The solution rests with our work and discipline.” ~ Jose Eduardo dos Santos


  • “The ability to discipline yourself to delay gratification in the short term in order to enjoy greater rewards in the long term is the indispensable prerequisite for success.” ~ Maxwell Maltz


  • “The fact is, discipline is only punishment when imposed on you by someone else. When you discipline yourself, it’s not punishment but empowerment.” ~ Les Brown


  • “It’s been said that there are only two pains in life, the pain of discipline or the pain of regret, and that discipline weighs ounces while regret weighs tons.” ~ Anthony Robbins


  • “Success is actually a short race – a sprint fueled by discipline just long enough for habit to kick in and take over.” ~ Gary Keller


  • “We don’t have to be smarter than the rest; we have to be more disciplined than the rest.” ~ Warren Buffett


warren buffett quote on discipline


  • “One-half of life is luck: the other half is discipline – and that’s the important half, for without discipline you wouldn’t know what to do with luck.” ~ Carl Zuckmeyer


  • “Don’t expect to be motivated every day to get out there and make things happen. You won’t be. Don’t count on motivation. Count on discipline.” ~ Jocko Willink


  • “Discipline is the thing that makes you do what you might not want to, but you do it anyway because it’s what you have to do in order to get what you want or desire.” ~ Kyle Vidrine


  • “Discipline and constant work are the whetstones upon which the dull knife of talent is honed until it becomes sharp enough, hopefully, to cut through even the toughest meat and gristle.” ~ Stephen King


  • “Discipline imposed from the outside eventually defeats when it is not matched by desire from within.” ~ Dawson Earle Trotman


Short Quotes On Discipline

Did you enjoy that first batch of discipline quotes? Good, because there’s more on the way.

Sometimes, there’s more power and wisdom in 5-10 words than in entire speeches. That’s why this next batch of discipline quotes will be a little more concise and hard-hitting.


  • “True freedom is impossible without a mind made free by discipline.” ~ Mortimer J. Alder


  • “Don’t count the days, make the days count.” ~ Muhammad Ali


  • “Self-control is the chief element in self-respect, and self-respect is the chief element in courage.” ~ Thucydides


  • “We must do our work for its own sake, not for fortune or attention or applause.” ~ Steven Pressfield


  • “A disciplined mind leads to happiness, and an undisciplined mind leads to suffering.” ~ Dalai Lama XIV


  • “If you only write when inspired, you may be a fairly decent poet, but you’ll never be a novelist.” ~ Niel Gaiman


  • “We do today what they won’t, so tomorrow we can accomplish what they can’t.” ~ Dwayne ‘The Rock’ Johnson


  • “The price of excellence is discipline.  The cost of mediocrity is disappointment.” ~ William Arthur Ward


  • “The first and greatest victory is to conquer self.” ~ Plato


  • “Don’t be upset about the results you didn’t get from the work you didn’t do.” ~ Harvey Specter, Suits


  • “Success is nothing more than a few simple disciplines, practiced every day.” ~ Jim Rohn


  • “He who cannot obey himself will be commanded. That is the nature of living creatures.” ~  Friedrich Nietzsche


nietschze quote with man looking at city in the background


  • “If it were easy to walk the path of self-discipline, we wouldn’t gain much from it.” ~ Glenn C. Stewart


  • “Discipline is the bridge between goals and accomplishment.” ~ Jim Rohn


  • “You never will be the person you can be if pressure, tension and discipline are taken out of your life.” ~ James G. Bilkey


  • “Discipline is choosing between what you want now and what you want most.” ~ Abraham Lincoln


  • “The road to success is dotted with many tempting parking spaces.” ~ Will Rogers


  • “Self-discipline is when your conscience tells you to do something and you don’t talk back.” ~ W.K. Hope


  • “Motivation gets you going, but discipline keeps you growing.” ~ John C. Maxwell


  • “Discipline is rarely enjoyable, but almost always profitable.” ~ Darrin Patrick


  • “The discipline you enforce today determines the successes you’ll enjoy tomorrow. ~ Gary Ryan Blair


  • “Self-discipline is the No.1 delineating factor between the rich, the middle class, and the poor.” ~ Robert Kiyosaki


  • “That aim in life is highest which requires the highest and finest discipline.” ~ Henry David Thoreau


  • “Self-discipline is that mental state of commitment, which gets you performing an activity regardless of your feelings.” ~ Anonymous


  • “Through self-discipline comes freedom.” ~ Aristotle


  • “The future depends on what we do in the present.” Mahatma Ghandi


mahatma gahdni discipline quotes


  • “With self-discipline most anything is possible.” ~ Theodore Roosevelt


  • “True discipline is really just self-remembering; no forcing or fighting is necessary.” ~  Charles Eisenstein


  • “The foundation of a strong self comes from small acts of daily discipline.” ~ Ophelia Filek


  • “For every disciplined effort there is a multiple reward.” ~ Jim Rohn


  • “The most powerful control we can ever attain, is to be in control of ourselves.” ~ Chris Page


Discipline Quotes (Fitness)

I wanted to throw a few discipline quotes related to fitness on this list because it’s one of the most common areas of life where people fall short. Many of us want to get in better shape and transform our bodies but struggle to develop the discipline necessary to achieve those aspirations. 

Developing an exercise habit has been one of the most important habits that I’ve integrated into my life over the past few years.

Continuous exercise callouses your mind. When you lift weights, or go on a run, or get in the pool to swim laps, you’re actively exposing yourself to discomfort. That’s why exercise is often considered one of the keystone habits responsible for bringing about other positive changes in people’s lives.

You’re not always going to feel motivated to exercise. In most cases, especially at the start, you’re going to have to battle your emotions and force yourself to take action even when you don’t feel like it.

Doing this repeatedly solidifies the belief that you don’t need any one of the various types of motivation to help you take action. Making the right choice even when you’re not motivated is at the heart of discipline, which is why people who start exercising tend to notice a shift in other areas of their life as well.

They begin to eat better and sleep better. They begin to have more energy and increase their productivity. Their self-esteem improves as their appearance starts to align with their self-defined goals.

So if you’re struggling with discipline, undertaking the challenge of improving your health and fitness through exercise is one of the best places to start. Here’s a list of discipline quotes that highlight the intertwined relationship between exercise and self-discipline.


  • “I don’t count my sit-ups, I only start counting when it starts hurting, when I feel pain, that’s when I start counting, cause that’s when it really counts.” ~ Muhammad Ali


  • “No matter how slowly you go, you are still lapping everybody on the couch.” ~ Unknown


  • “The discipline you learn from getting fit is discipline that you take everywhere. The strength you acquire from physical fitness is strength that you carry with you everywhere. When you improve your fitness, you improve your life.” ~ Zero Dean


  • “Work for that feeling that you have accomplished something… Don’t waste your time on this earth without making a mark.” ~ Joe Rogan


  • “The last three or four reps is what makes the muscle grow. This area of pain divides a champion from someone who is not a champion.”~ Arnold Schwarzenegger


  • “The human body is the best picture of the human soul.” ~ Ludwig Wittgenstein


  • “Exercise is king. Nutrition is queen. Put them together and you’ve got a kingdom.” ~ Jack LaLanne


  • “The pain you feel today will be the strength you feel tomorrow.” ~ Arnold Schwarzenegger


  • “Perseverance is the hard work you do after you get tired of doing the hard work you already did.” ~  Newt Gingrich


  • “Getting fit is all about mind over matter. I don’t mind, so it doesn’t matter.” ~ Adam Hargreaves


  • “Every champion was once a contender that refused to give up.” ~  Sylvester Stallone


  • “If you don’t make time for exercise, you’ll probably have to make time for illness.” ~ Robin Sharma


  • “Once you are exercising regularly, the hardest thing to do is stop it.” ~ Erin Gray


  • “Your body can stand almost anything. It’s your mind that you have to convince.” ~ Andrew Murphy


  • “I hated every single minute of training, but I said: Don’t quit. Suffer now and live the rest of your life as a champion.” ~ Muhammad Ali


  • “The mind is the most important part of achieving any fitness goal. Mental change always comes before physical change.” ~ Matt Mcgory


  • “You’re going to have to let it hurt. Let it suck. The harder you work, the better you will look. Your appearance isn’t parallel to how heavy you lift, it’s parallel to how hard you work.” ~ Joe Mangianello


  • “Self-discipline is a key to many doors. Not least of which is one that leads to a better, stronger, and healthier version of yourself.” ~ Zero Dean


Final Thoughts

I hope that you enjoyed this extensive list of discipline quotes that were put together to give you an extra boost of motivation to “embrace the suck” today.

No matter where you’re at or what you’ve done in your life up until now, you still have the power of choice. And there’s really only two you can make – the hard path or the easy path.

The easy path is littered with distractions and comfort. It’s filled with choices devoid of risk and fear. It’s a pleasant journey, but it’s a one-way ticket to nowhere.

The hard path is littered with pain and boredom. It’s filled with frustration and challenges as we slug towards our goals day after day. 

This is the path that the people we admire choose to walk. Hopefully, some of these discipline quotes inspire you to take the latter path.

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