How to balance discipline with self-care

It’s your girl Lisa Nichols here and I wanna know…how many of you feel guilty when you practice self-care?

Trust me when I say, #YANA (you are not alone). You see…many times when I talk about a subject it’s because I know a lot about it. But sometimes a topic comes up…like this one…that I want to bring to you because O-M-G I have personally struggled with it for years.

When I was creating Motivating the Masses, being disciplined meant GRINDING every day. I put EVERYTHING aside for the sake of building the machine. Building the brand. Building my dream. It was important to have DISCIPLINE to be consistent.

However, what I lacked was a fully developed SELF-CARE muscle. What I learned the hard way was that in order to give your dream a chance, you have to be disciplined enough to practice self-care.

Why? Because self-care allows your body to be the instrument to get you all the way to the dream and beyond.

That’s why this week, I wanted to share some tips for establishing a self-care practice. You’ll want to grab a pen and paper to jot down some notes.

Importance of Self-Care

Self-care is as important to your dream as getting on the work treadmill of making sales calls…of being consistent on social media…as knowing your numbers and your projections…and mastering your craft. Because what you are doing is not a sprint. It’s a marathon. You are not building something for the short-term. You are building for the long haul. You want the work you’re doing now to serve people in the next 20 years.

So, self-care is not optional, and it is not selfish. Self-care is your responsibility to your future. If you’re disciplined enough to learn and implement new techniques, please make sure that you’re also disciplined at self-care.

Now, let me be clear, self-care does NOT mean balance. Balance is a myth and harmony is a must. What do I mean by that? You’ll never rest for the same amount of time that you work. If you’re a go-getter, gladiator, change agent and mover and shaker like me, then you know that everything is not exactly equal. But…you can learn how to get what you need out of the time that you put into self-care. Self-care is the act of restoring your soul…restoring yourself…restoring your energy.

Self-care is the practice of being–being present to your family…being present to your friends…taking time out for casual conversations…allowing yourself to do things that just allow your brain to rest or give your body a thank you. I love to lay under my tree and just stretch slowly. I love to just turn my phone on and listen to some easy music and just stretch and thank my body for carrying me through the years.

I want to implore you…if you’re disciplined enough to give your dream a chance, be disciplined enough to practice self-care as well.

Self-Care Tip #1: Focus on Yourself First, then Give to Others

Fill your cup up first and serve others from your overflow. You have a long line of things to do and people to serve. You’re going to always have a long line to serve–gladiators and change agents always do. Make sure you stay at the front of your own line.

Self-Care Tip #2: Make the Distinction between Indulgence and Self-Care.

I used to feel really guilty about getting a massage. As a matter of fact, I wouldn’t tell anyone I was going to get a massage. I would say I have a meeting. Somehow I felt like I was cheating if I got a massage as it felt so indulgent. But there’s a distinction between indulgence and self-care. Indulgence is when you participate in something like shopping or massages or whatever it is that makes you feel good, but you do it to the degree that it harms other areas of your life or causes them to be out of balance—whether you spend too much time or spend too much money. Indulgence can throw you into a sense of chaos or problem management.

Self-care is simply just that–it’s self-care. It’s looking after your mindset. There’s mental self-care. There’s spiritual self-care. There’s physical self-care, and there’s emotional self-care. It’s important to understand the distinction between indulgence and self-care. Don’t let indulgence be an excuse by saying you’re in self-care, and don’t skip self-care because you feel like you’re indulging too much.

Self-Care Tip #3: Maintain Optimal Energy Levels for Your Body. 

Your body is your instrument. I’m not sure if you know this or not, but for 19 years I was over 220 pounds. I didn’t connect the two dots that if I really wanted to live in my purpose and was committed to transforming lives, healing humanity, and creating bridges where walls once existed across cultural lines, then I had to be in optimal health. If I was really committed to that calling on my life, then I had to also be committed to optimum energy and optimum care for my body. Because my body and your body are the vehicles to live out our life’s purpose. When I realized that, all of a sudden, every single excuse I had to for not becoming healthy had to die away.

So, to recap…first focus on you and then give to others. Then second, make a distinction between indulgence and self-care. And third, make sure you maintain optimal energy levels and care for your body

Remember, this show is not a monologue. It is a dynamic, delicious, courageous dialogue. I love reading your comments and seeing you engage with each other, so please keep your comments coming. Let me know what resonated for you in this episode. Have you been viewing self-care as indulgence? Or maybe you realized that you have not been putting yourself at the front of your own line.

This is your home. We are your tribe. And when I say I believe in you and I love you, it’s because I truly do.

Your Sister in Prosperity and Possibility,

43 replies
  1. Aida
    Aida says:

    I definitely inconsistent with self care, and I’m having a hard time to make consistent, I haven’t figure it out yet. Any suggestions?

    Thank you

  2. deborah burks
    deborah burks says:

    Hi Lisa
    Thank you for this ,I have started this process ,I may not be doing it right but what I have discovered that Im happier when I go online and do my live videos talking. I started in 2017 recording every morning then I stop going on because I was in fear and I felt wouldn’t anyone would listen to me . A few months ago I being to have a pull in my stomach that I had to get back on live . I didn’t understand and I still don’t but Im happier when I do. I saw you and I have followed you and you motivate me. I know that Im not you or any great speaker or coach
    but Im me and I have a lot that is in my soul that need to be heard so with that been said Im going to ride your coat tail until that beast come out to speak the volume that for my tribe to her from me. Thanks again My girl P.S I want to Learn

  3. April Burrows
    April Burrows says:


    Up to now, this has been a struggle. I am so glad to hear you share it and affirm. I just jumped in and joined a dance class and joined a choir so I am doing things that bring me joy and support my health.

    I am good at spending time in meditation, making massages/health care and being present to others, I am just not as disciplined in making time for play.

    Thanks for the conversation.

  4. Jomomitchell
    Jomomitchell says:

    Such a great message life is a very interesting hustlewe must learn,when and how to just,chill and relax!!! I’m trying to learn,love you,

  5. Passion
    Passion says:

    Self care is exactly where I’ve been stuck at. I feel bad when I do for myself cuz I’m use to always doing for others. I never put myself first but thanks to this video I completely understand how important it is and making a vow to start today. Thank you very much for you are truly heaven sent

  6. Rashmita
    Rashmita says:

    Thank you for your wise words…. I love the way you talk and explain… first hand perience…

    Love and hugs

    from Nairobi Kenya

  7. Gail Mitchell Hall
    Gail Mitchell Hall says:

    Lisa, the “golden” nuggets you share create genuine Hope for the Future. Identifies (gives a name to) and creates ability to put in order practices that are MANDATORY to succeed.

    Re: YANA-I do not feel alone.

    Keep droppin “golden nuggets” I only need to apply them to my life. CONSISTENTLY…Revolutionary!!!


    Lisa i just want to thank you for sharing your wonderful story. I really do give alot of my time building my company and i really never took the time out for doing the things i really wanted to do im going to take your advice and make a change in my life for taking time out for loving myself more and giving myself. Self-care Thank you so much Lisa love you my sister in prosperity…

  9. Jennifer Marvin
    Jennifer Marvin says:

    Lisa, Thank you for this. I too have struggled with this over the years. In many ways, I have come far, and in other ways, I still need some work. The Pandemic definitely adds another layer to it, as i find I crave more outside time than I often allow myself to have. While the days are not super cold, at the least, I can pack up and do at least some of my work outside. Even of it is just an hour, that is plenty. Also, 8 live how you frame balance. It is elusive and the equation sometimes has to change. In my case, it changes often. You said, it’s never going to be equal. The ah ha for me in that is, I can think of it a bit less rigid. I didn’t even realize there was still rigidity in my mind on this. The fluctuations are just that. Many blessings! Jennifer

  10. Naomi Glee
    Naomi Glee says:

    Hello Lisa I so love what you are doing for the Masses. I have NOT stopped watching and participating as much as I can since I was introduced to you. Iam encouraged and you are GREAT and Amazing. Keep up the God filled Work. You are a God sent! Much Love Naomi

  11. Mary Jo Webdale
    Mary Jo Webdale says:

    How did you lose your weight? I have 60 pounds I want to lose and have tried everything. I’ve tried Weight Watchers and all types of exercises. The scale just doesn’t move and it keeps going up.
    I’ve lost my motivation and I’m really concerned about this extra weight.

  12. Andrea Bradshaw
    Andrea Bradshaw says:

    I love you! I’m so excited to talk to you thank you for being you thank you for showing up! I am doing a lot of cell care. The mirror exercise that you have shared really has helped me so much. I would love to meet you and go to your speaker training.

  13. Sabina
    Sabina says:

    Dear Lisa, this video came exactly when I needed it. Thank you for your clear and direct instructions as usual. You are awesome! Thanks for all great advices and for sharing your experience!

  14. Annette
    Annette says:

    Confirmed a conversation I had this morning. Thanks Lisa. You are fabulous and so motivating. I can feel your passion in each video.

  15. Celestine Snell
    Celestine Snell says:

    Oh my God, the discipline I have is strong. My self care is powerful and I acknowledge that though I have combined the two, has been a little challenged. My self care focused is the drive, the motivates giving me the inspiration that inspires my vision for mr business, HEALING MOTIONS. And as I continue to build this coaching practice, along side my future endeavors I will also have some fun! Thank you Lisa, so much for this reminder. I so love and appreciate you. Yes, my body is the vehicle that will get me from one level to the next, and I am very aware. Awesome! This week I will create some balance, a little time to spend with family and friends. And I will relax in it, Wow! I needed this one, Lisa! Thank you, for real, for real! I love you Woman! You take care of you! And congratulations on your engagement. I am all so looking forward to a future with a man who will also love me as he will love himself in return! Amen, Amen. Peace & Love, Celestine!

  16. Sisanda Dlakavu
    Sisanda Dlakavu says:

    Oh I really needed this Lisa I have learned it the hard way. Thanks for giving me a way forward cause I was looking into practicing self care and maintain balance in my life.

  17. Sisanda Dlakavu
    Sisanda Dlakavu says:

    Oh I really needed this Lisa I have learned it the hard way. Thanks for giving me a way forward cause I was looking into practicing self care in my life.

  18. Anita Carroll
    Anita Carroll says:

    That was an awesome word on self care and I needed to hear about it because I have been struggling in this area for a long time and I need to take better care of my body and me in every aspects of my life. Thank you for that inspiring messahe. Hod God bless you.

  19. Marjorie
    Marjorie says:

    Thank you sister! I relate so much with the 2nd point, I sometimes feel guilty for taking care of myself but now I am enlightened to differentiate that from indulgence, powerful!

  20. Bernice Gayle
    Bernice Gayle says:

    Queen Sister Lisa, you look amazing. I love your video clip. It is inspirational and you are so down to earth and very transparent and that is what I like because these qualities are within ME. Like you SELF-CARE muscle is something that I am always neglecting. I am always putting others first. So when it’s time for me to spend a ‘little’ time to develop my SELF-CARE muscle time does not allow me.

    Please be safe and stay healthy.

    Make the rest of your day a great one.

    Peace & Love Always
    Bernice xx

  21. MaryEllen Whitton
    MaryEllen Whitton says:

    I have always been incredibly disciplined about my self-care: yoga, mountain biking, hiking, getting massages, spending time reading quality books.
    Since COVID restrictions were implemented back in March, at first, for a little while I was still keeping to my regular routine and now it’s mostly fallen apart and I’ve gained about 10 pounds. I’m having a hard time, for the first time in my life, staying on a routine. I appreciate your simplicity in how our own self-care affects EVERYTHING in our life:) Gives me inspiration! Thanks Lisa.

  22. Jenda S. Pettigrew
    Jenda S. Pettigrew says:

    My sista, I pray that you feel as well as you look! You look absolutely gorgeous like your self care is working and like you truly practice what you teach! Thank you for your practical guidance to a fabulous working girl lifestyle!

  23. Chris
    Chris says:

    Thanks so very much; for ensuring us Emerging Leaders; on the Up Coming Raise( the permission to be Human)
    This really helps understance the Balance between Harmony and Hunger
    Thanks alot See you on the Top

  24. Liliana Mateiu
    Liliana Mateiu says:

    Wonderful tips, thank you, yes you were right, I always put others’ needs first and I do find taking care of my body indulgence, which is of course wrong. Thanks to your inspirational speech I now better understand the importance of self care and love of myself.

  25. Shelle
    Shelle says:

    This is my new #1 priority! I have knog wn for months now that if I do not strating getting rest and eating right, plus incorporating exercise, self care would be THE #1 obstacle that would hold me back from from really leveling up and reaching my potential. Mainly sleep has been my biggerst problem… I find myself staying up extremely late working then only sleeping a couple hours so I am up again before sunrise to start it all over again! I respected my commitment and tenacity for the first 8 months but it has caught up with me!!! committing to the change… would like to cleep from 9 or 10 PM to 4 AM but as you can see, its almost 1 AM EST time and here I am watching one of my favorites so I can expand my knowledge!! Taking myslef to bed with a cup of tea and a good book JUST BECAUSE I SAW THIS!!! THANK YOU LISA! Sending you Love, Peace, and Happines… Shelley

  26. Johnita Isabell
    Johnita Isabell says:

    Wow Lisa…that rocked me to my core. First to make sure I stay in front of my own line. I have been at the back of the line for many many years. Always putting everyone else before myself. This is why I have not taken care of my vehicle to live out my life purpose as I was trying to hard to help others live out theirs. There is a verse in the Bible that talks about the blessing of God being pressed down shaken together and running over. I like to think that the pressed down and shaken together is for me and the running over is for everyone else. Im learning that giving out of my abundance will leave me able to take care of myself and not drained but rejuvenated. Thank you .

  27. VESNA
    VESNA says:

    hej Lisa thank you for sharing this episode,I also didnt put myself first for a few years,but I overcome that,I transform my life from being totaly not selfish in a selfcare person…BOL I was feeling the same about massage,I was thinking that is luksuz,today I think its a need and I deserve it…

  28. Loveness makwara
    Loveness makwara says:

    Thanks Lisa for the inspiration. I used to weigh 80 kilograms and now I am 63 kilograms. The journey was not easy though. I am now healthier than before and I have a lot of energy. Love you Lisa.


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