175 Discipline Quotes to Give you Direction

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Want to accomplish more in life? These discipline quotes will help you stay on track and get things done.

No matter how motivated or inspired you are when starting something, it may take more than mere enthusiasm to stick with it.

That’s where discipline comes in. A mix of focus, dedication, and perseverance that makes you keep your eyes on the prize and buckle down when facing distractions.

So get focused on these discipline quotes and see the benefits of self-discipline in your life and affairs today.

Top 10 Discipline Quotes

Discipline equals freedom.

Jocko Willink

Discipline is choosing between what you want now, and what you want most.

Abraham Lincoln
David Campbell quote "Discipline is remembering what you want"
“Discipline is remembering what you want.” – David Campbell

You never will be the person you can be if pressure, tension and discipline are taken out of your life.

James G. Bilkey

A commander who cannot develop proper discipline must be replaced.

Dwight D. Eisenhower

It’s easy to have faith in yourself and have discipline when you’re a winner, when you’re number one. What you’ve got to have is faith and discipline when you’re not yet a winner.

Vince Lombardi

Genius at first is little more than a great capacity for receiving discipline.

George Eliot
Jim Rohn quote "Discipline is the bridge between goals and accomplishment"
“Discipline is the bridge between goals and accomplishment.” – Jim Rohn

A disciplined person follows values stemming from their source – the self.

Stephen Covey

A disciplined mind leads to happiness, and an undisciplined mind leads to suffering.

Dalai Lama

Quotes about Discipline

The price of excellence is discipline. The cost of mediocrity is disappointment.

William Arthur Ward

You will never be successful until you have a plan, and the discipline and determination to go through with that plan.

Julius Williams, Rules to the Game

One of the toughest things to get over when you are speaking of motivation and discipline is not to measure your success by the success of your peers.

Felix Oberman, Developing Discipline and Motivation

Discipline is being able to force yourself to do something is spite of how you feel, over and over until it becomes a habit.

Kim Brenneman

If you don’t teach your child discipline, you are preparing him poorly for life.

Bethany Bridges

Without discipline, there’s no life at all.

Katharine Hepburn
Shane Parrish discipline quote "Discipline creates opportunity"
“Discipline creates opportunity.” – Shane Parrish

Whoever loves discipline loves knowledge, but he who hates reproof is stupid.

Proverbs 12:1, ESV

Discipline takes courage and perseverance, but it pays off.

Joan Price, Climbing the Spiritual Ladder

Focus, discipline, hard work, goal setting and, of course, the thrill of finally achieving your goals. These are all lessons in life.

Kristi Yamaguchi

The successful among us delay gratification. The successful among us bargain with the future.

Jordan Peterson

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, The Science of Self-Discipline

Once you have commitment, you need the discipline and hard work to get you there.

Haile Gebrselassie

The basis of positive discipline is to educate or raise children with love and firmness at the same time. It is giving him or her the opportunity to grow up in a home where freedom, love, and limits are allowed.

Henry Quilaq

Discipline is just doing the same thing the right way whether anyone’s watching or not.

Michael J. Fox

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

Discipline comes easy when you give yourself no other options.

Carlos del Valle
Marcus Aurelius quote "Discipline over desire"
“Discipline over desire.” – Marcus Aurelius

If I don’t have a project, I don’t have any discipline.

Marina Abramovic

A disciple, the one receiving discipline, is not a prisoner or recipient of punishment, but one who is learning through instruction.

Daniel J. Siegel, No-Drama Discipline

You cannot aim yourself at anything if you are completely undisciplined and untutored.

Jordan Peterson

How we spend our days is of course how we spend our lives.

Annie Dillard

One thousand days of lessons for discipline; ten thousand days of lessons for mastery.

Miyamoto Musashi

Loving parents always discipline with love and encouragement and never as a means to devalue and humiliate to the point of feeling worthless.

Rhonda Hart

If there isn’t discipline, how can there be a true realization of an ideal?

Miyamoto Musashi

You must be disciplined in thought, word, and deed. Consciously train yourself to do those things that are good for you.

Iyanla Vanzant

Once you set the goal, it takes fierce discipline to reach it.

Sam Moore

Discipline is your relationship with the time you have left.

Barbara McNally
M Scott Peck quote "Discipline is wisdom and vice versa"
“Discipline is wisdom and vice versa.” – M. Scott Peck

Discipline is more reliable than motivation. One is consistent the other is fleeting.

Shane Parrish

There is nothing so disobedient as an undisciplined mind, and there is nothing so obedient as a disciplined mind.

Buddha

We must all suffer one of two things: the pain of discipline or the pain of regret.

Jim Rohn

When a man is sufficiently motivated, discipline will take care of itself.

Albert Einstein

Life is a splendid gift… But to live your life, you must discipline it.

Florence Nightingale

There is no magic wand that can resolve our problems. The solution rests with our work and discipline.

Jose Eduardo dos Santos

For the moment all discipline seems painful rather than pleasant, but later it yields the peaceful fruit of righteousness to those who have been trained by it.

Hebrews 12:11, ESV

Good order and discipline in an army are more to be depended upon than ferocity.

Niccolò Machiavelli

Discipline divorced from wisdom is not true discipline, but merely the meaningless following of custom, which is only a disguise for stupidity.

Rabindranath Tagore

Learn to convert the discomfort of discipline into the satisfaction of personal growth.

Tony Robbins
"Nothing is stronger than habit"
“Nothing is stronger than habit.” – Ovid

Discipline is built by consistently performing small acts of courage.

Robin Sharma

Effective discipline is the willingness to force yourself to pay the price, and to do what you know you should do, when you should do it, whether you feel like it or not.

Brian Tracy

It takes tremendous discipline to control the influence, the power you have over other people’s lives.

Clint Eastwood

Benefits of Discipline

Discipline must come through liberty.

Maria Montessori

Practice is the price you pay today to be better tomorrow.

James Clear

The costs of your good habits are in the present. The costs of your bad habits are in the future.

James Clear

True freedom is impossible without a mind made free by discipline.

Mortimer J. Adler

We are most free when we are under discipline. Free from being ruled by fleshly impulse and worldly desire.

Thibaut

Success is measured by your discipline and inner peace.

Mike Ditka

Discipline is the refining fire by which talent becomes ability.

Roy L. Smith

Never believe a promise from a man or woman who has no discipline. They have broken a thousand promises to themselves, and they break their promise for you.

Matthew Kelly
Henry Rollins quote "Discipline is money in the bank"
“Discipline is money in the bank.” – Henry Rollins

With faith, discipline, and selfless devotion to duty, there is nothing worthwhile that you cannot achieve.

Muhammad Ali Jinnah

Discipline is doing what you really don’t want to do so you can do what you really want to do.

Jeff Fisher

Confidence comes from discipline and training.

Robert Kiyosaki

Discipline is what makes you do everything you need to do.

Anthony Joshua

Believe in yourself, and find ways to express yourself, and find the discipline to keep growing.

Michael Feinstein

Discipline is the soul of an army. It makes small numbers formidable; procures success to the weak, and esteem to all.

George Washington

Somehow I kept my head above water. I relied on the discipline, character, and strength that I had started to develop as that little girl in her first swimming pool.

Esther Williams

A mode of conduct, a standard of courage, discipline, fortitude and integrity can do a great deal to make a woman beautiful.

Jacqueline Bisset

Discipline is the refining fire by which talent becomes ability.

Roy L. Smith

Talent is nothing without dedication and discipline, and dedication and discipline is a talent in itself.

Luke Campbell
"An idiot with a plan can beat a genius without a plan"
“An idiot with a plan can beat a genius without a plan.” – Warren Buffett

Discipline is rarely enjoyable, but almost always profitable.

Darrin Patrick

Some people regard discipline as a chore. For me, it is a kind of order that sets me free to fly.

Julie Andrews

It was character that got us out of bed, commitment that moved us into action, and discipline that enabled us to follow through.

Zig Ziglar

Self-respect is the fruit of discipline; the sense of dignity grows with the ability to say no to oneself.

Abraham Joshua Heschel

For every disciplined effort, there are multiple rewards. That’s one of life’s great arrangements. If you sow well, you will reap well.

Jim Rohn

Self-Discipline Quotes

Self-discipline is the ability to make yourself do what you should do when you should do it, whether you feel like it or not.

Elbert Hubbard

The more I disciplined myself to take notice of the good things in life, the more I began to recognize just how much there is to be thankful for.

Krystal Kuehn, Giving Thanks

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

Self-discipline begins with the mastery of thought.

Napoleon Hill

The best sort of character, however, cannot be formed without effort. There needs the exercise of constant self-watchfulness, self-discipline, and self-control.

Samuel Smiles

When you have strong self-discipline you will be prepared to overcome any kind of obstacles that you might encounter on your journey towards creating good habits.

Ronald Valentino, Habits
M Scott Peck quote "Self-discipline is a self-enlarging process"
“Self-discipline is a self-enlarging process.” – M. Scott Peck

I value self-discipline, but creating systems that make it next to impossible to misbehave is more reliable than self-control.

Tim Ferriss

We might say that discipline doesn’t always help kids to become self-disciplined.

Alfie Kohn

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

I taught myself discipline, the strictest kind of discipline.

Arnold Schwarzenegger

Self-discipline is that which, next to virtue, truly and essentially raises one man above another.

Joseph Addison

Self-discipline is an act of cultivation. It requires you to connect today’s actions to tomorrow’s results.

Gary Ryan Blair

How much time are you putting into your highest priorities?

Jack Canfield

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 a season for reaping.  Self-discipline helps you know which is which.

Gary Ryan Blair

When we discipline ourselves by watching what we put into our hearts and minds, by doing the hard work of Bible study, by investing in prayer, and by faithfully surrounding ourselves with a group of like-minded believers, we begin to deepen and mature.

Mark J. Musser

Let’s not be afraid to speak the common sense truth: you can’t have high standards without good discipline.

William Hague
"No man is free who cannot command himself"
“No man is free who cannot command himself.” – Pythagoras

Self-discipline is the ability to organize your behavior over time in the service of specific goals.

Nathaniel Branden

Discipline is persuasion of the self. When you’re ready, you’ll need no persuasion.

Andrew Ruiz

Your environments and settings matter. Set yourself up in an environment that encourages the building of self-discipline. Not one that sabotages yourself.

Jordan Koma, Bad Habits

Each person has the motivation and the drive to become self-disciplined if they put their minds to it and the time and effort that will be required for success.

Mike C. Adams

I think self-discipline is something, it’s like a muscle. The more you exercise it, the stronger it gets.

Daniel Goldstein

It’s just a matter of understanding what’s necessary and discipline yourself to do it.

Arthur Lydiard

Self-discipline is a great time-saver; it is the ability to make yourself work on only those things that are most important to you.

Brian Tracy

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

It is felt that a disciplined mind leads to happiness and an undisciplined mind leads to suffering, and in fact it is said that bringing about discipline within one’s mind is the essence of the Buddha’s teaching.

Dalai Lama

Day by day, what you choose, what you think and what you do is who you become.

Heraclitus
Teddy Roosevelt quote "With self-discipline most anything is possible"
“With self-discipline most anything is possible.” – Teddy Roosevelt

The purpose of discipline is self-discipline, and its best source is the full-time hovering presence of a grandmother. Grandmothers don’t spoil children; tired parents do.

Florence King

Do the best one can. Do it over again. Then still improve, even if ever so slightly, those retouches.

Marguerite Yourcenar

True self-discipline is not for the weak-minded.

David Goggins

Self-esteem does not lead to success in life. Self-discipline and self-control do, and sports can help teach those.

Roy Baumeister

Always imagine yourself on the battlefield under the fiercest attack; never forget this crucial element of training.

Morihei Ueshiba

You can’t win the war against the world if you can’t win the war against your own mind.

Will Smith

A modern stoic knows that the surest way to discipline passion is to discipline time: decide what you want or ought to do during the day, then always do it at exactly the same moment every day, and passion will give you no trouble.

W. H. Auden

First forget inspiration. Habit is more dependable. Habit will sustain you whether you’re inspired or not. Habit is persistence in practice.

Octavia Butler

The only discipline that lasts is self-discipline.

Bum Phillips

Read some good, heavy, serious books just for discipline: Take yourself in hand and master yourself.

W. E. B. Du Bois
John Wooden quote "Discipline yourself and others won't need to"
“Discipline yourself and others won’t need to.” – John Wooden

Through determination and self-focus and discipline, you can accomplish anything.

Kimberly Guilfoyle

Self-discipline is when your consciousness tells you to do something and you don’t talk back

W. K. Hope

It’s nearly impossible to achieve focus and self-discipline separately.

Peter Hollins

We don’t have to be smarter than the rest. We have to be more disciplined than the rest.

Warren Buffett

Self-Control Quotes

Self-control is strength, right thought is mastery, calmness is power.

James Allen

How do you limit yourself from the things that you love? And how do you know if you are over-consuming something? Depending on what it is that you are trying to limit, this will be a true test of self-discipline.

Brad Ryan

Routine, in an intelligent man, is a sign of ambition.

W.H. Auden

Self-control is the chief element in self-respect, and self-respect is the chief element in courage.

Thucydides

Most people don’t have a talent problem. They have a consistency problem.

Nicolas Cole

If you have control over yourself, you have no desire to control others.

Miya Yamanouchi

By constant self-discipline and self-control you can develop greatness of character.

Grenville Kleiser
"Not being able to govern events, I govern myself"
“Not being able to govern events, I govern myself.” – Michel De Montaigne

Self-control is the key to self-esteem and self-confidence.

Laurance McGraw V

You will never change your life until you change something you do daily.

John C. Maxwell

Focus is free but distractions cost you everything.

Thibaut

Silence is essential. It’s a tool, a sign of wisdom, a sign of self-control and self-discipline. It can be, in some cases, more courageous and fair to bite your tongue than it is to flap it.

Ryan Holiday

Curb your desire – don’t set your heart on so many things and you will get what you need.

Epictetus

Dignity grows with the ability to say no to oneself.

A. J. Heschel

What is discipline? Discipline means creating an order within you.

Osho

Complete abstinence is easier than perfect moderation.

St. Augustine

Don’t put off until tomorrow what you can do today.

Benjamin Franklin

To be occupied in what does not concern you is worse than doing nothing.

Baltasar Gracián
"The first and greatest victory is to conquer self"
“The first and greatest victory is to conquer self.” – Plato

Those who lack self-control live disoriented and disturbed lives.

Lucius Annaeus Seneca

Not to have control over the senses is like sailing in a rudderless ship, bound to break to pieces on coming in contact with the very first rock.

Mahatma Gandhi

What is truly ambitious is to face life and proceed with quiet confidence in spite of the distractions.

Ryan Holiday

He that hath no rule over his own spirit is like a city that is broken down, and without walls.

Proverbs 25:28, KJV

It is better, proverbially, to rule your own spirit than to rule a city.

Jordan Peterson, 12 Rules for Life

Every fulfilled dream occurred because of dedication to a process.

John C. Maxwell

Self-control is the quality that distinguishes the fittest to survive.

George Bernard Shaw

I choose to live by choice, not by chance.

Miyamoto Musashi

Conquest over one’s self; in the hour of victory, is a double triumph.

Publilius Syrus

Can you imagine yourself in 10 years if instead of avoiding the things you know you should do, you actually did them every single day – that’s powerful.

Jordan Peterson

Restraint

The senses have been conditioned by attraction to the pleasant and aversion to the unpleasant. Do not be ruled by them.

Bhagavad Gita

The discipline of desire is the background of character.

John Locke
Seneca quote "Excess in anything becomes a fault"
“Excess in anything becomes a fault.” – Lucius Annaeus Seneca

The number of people who stand ready to consume one’s time, to no purpose, is almost countless.

Booker T. Washington

He who conquers his passions is a man of more nerve than he who subdues the enemy.

Publilius Syrus

This is the main question, with what activity one’s leisure is filled.

Aristotle

Don’t get fat at the table of success.

Noah Kagan

Discipline comes from needs, not wants.

Jack Butcher

One ought not to give way in everything nor to everybody. To know how to refuse is therefore as important as to know how to consent.

Baltasar Gracián

Love the discipline you know, and let it support you. Entrust everything willingly to the gods, and then make your way through life – no one’s master and no one’s slave.

Marcus Aurelius

The more disciplined your environment is, the less disciplined you need to be.

James Clear

It shows greater self-control to refuse to withdraw oneself, and to do the same things as the crowd, but in a different way.

Lucius Annaeus Seneca

Learn to control your reactions or you will be puppeteered by anyone capable of provoking you.

Marcus Aurelius
James Lowell quote "Such power there is in clear-eyed self-restraint"
“Such power there is in clear-eyed self-restraint.” – James Russell Lowell

Living an undisciplined life isn’t freedom. It’s the ultimate version of slavery.

Fateh Singh

Talent without discipline is like an octopus on roller skates.

H. Jackson Brown, Jr.

Discipline teaches us to operate by principle rather than desire.

John MacArthur, Jr.

Conclusion

We hope these discipline quotes encourage you to lead a more disciplined life and accomplish your goals.

Any task is more meaningful when we approach it with the intention to do it well, finish it, and give it our all.

A greater level of dedication and resolve is often a springboard to success, but it takes discipline to get there. So stay inspired and phase out the distractions with a more disciplined outlook today.

Photo of author

Quincy Seale

Quincy is KIM's lead editor and content writer, and has invested in online properties since 2009. Quincy holds an MBA from the University of Dundee and an MSc from the University of Edinburgh, and lives in San Antonio with his wife Natalie, son Alex, and his dog Oban.