“Sometimes we confuse work ethic with love of what you’re doing.”
- Jim Dietz, SDSU Baseball Coach, speaking of Tony Gwynn
When I taught Covey's 7 Habits of Highly Effective People seminars, folks would receive feedback about how well they did in each of the 7 habits. Invariably, people scored lowest on habit 3 - put first things first. At first blush, this suggested that they weren't driven enough, organized enough - didn't do enough to set and keep priorities. Years later, I don't see it that way.
Habit 1 is “be proactive.” Habit 2 is “begin with the end in mind” - articulating a compelling vision by which to live one's life. Habit 3 is to then “put first things first” - doing the things that support your vision. My own opinion is that breakdowns in habit 3 actually reflect problems with habit 2. If people have discovered or created a truly compelling vision, putting first things first will not be a problem. If they have a vision that comes from a sense of obligation instead, putting first things first will be a chronic problem.
Finding a sense of purpose that resonates is difficult work. If you think that you are not disciplined, you may find that you simply have not created a compelling vision for yourself. Compelling suggests that it is exciting, suggesting a possibility that captivates you. It also suggests that is credible to you - something that you see as possible, perhaps even probable.
Once you've truly found yourself, even you may have trouble stopping you.