Strictness vs flexibility: Keep pushing or take a break?

So a lot of this work is about establishing discipline, removing bad habits, developing good habits, self-control, self-management.
But an important part of this self-management is to know when to take a break.
People that train themselves with discipline, well, they typically know this too well.
We take too many breaks.
We’re too ready to take a break.
We’ve really been trained to the idea that, you know, what you feel like doing, you should do.
And if you feel like a break, then it’s time for a break.
So we’re typically over-trained in the idea of being ready to take a break at any time.
So when we start to develop discipline, good habits, work on self-development, it’s quite normal to really avoid that.
Because in those early steps of self-development, early steps when we’re just starting to rein in our habits, develop self-control, we get that feeling all the time.
Hey, I want a break now.
I want a break now.
Take a break now.
And we have to train ourselves to ignore that signal and say, ah, you know, I know that I want to take a break now, but I’m not finished yet, so I am not going to take a break until I finish my good action, finish my workout, finish my chore, finish my work.
So we train ourselves to be able to resist and delay that call to take a break.
But sometimes- I mean, there are times when we really do need a break, where it’s not about something that, oh, we can just, you know, mindset our way through it, and, you know, just decide that we’re going to keep going and will our way through.
Sometimes we really do need to rest.
If we still don’t take a break then, then we are in danger of cracking, burning out, wearing ourselves down, to the point where maybe we get sick, maybe we give up.
So it’s a balance, as so many things are.
It’s a tricky balance between how much am I going to push myself, and how much am I going to let myself rest and recover? If we go too far in the pushing, we do damage to ourselves, we could lead to burning out and breaking our program, giving up entirely, going back into bad habits.
And if we don’t push ourselves enough, then we will not achieve what we can, and we’ll sort of be just sort of stuck in a place where we could be developing ourselves beyond.
So there’s, of course, no answer, no automatic answer to this.
It is a balance.
I find that when I’m first developing a good habit, I’m first starting to do something that I have resistance to, that I feel like stopping, but I make myself do anyway, when I’m first starting, then I have to push through that feeling of wanting to stop, no matter what.
And barring something like a serious injury or emergency that would prevent a habit, I will commit to doing it.
And then once it’s sort of- once I feel that that habit has caught on, in some way been locked in to some degree, then I am able to let myself sometimes not do it.
Although even saying that, you know, that’s of course a very slippery slope, to say, oh, this habit is all baked in now, so I don’t have to do it, and it’ll be fine.
Easy for that to slide downwards and eventually losing the habit.
But once it becomes sort of caught on as something normal that I do now, then it becomes- I have the option of, if I need that break, I can take the break.
So this is what I did with exercising.
When I first started exercising again a few years ago, I would exercise every day.
I had, no matter what, made it every day.
I tried doing it every other day, but I had a hard time.
You know, I found that on the rest day it was like, oh, maybe I could do it.
I was still kind of into it.
But the day after the rest day, when it was time to get back into it, I felt a great resistance to really just not wanting to put myself through that. …

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