Have you ever wondered why so many successful and influential people screw up and lose everything by doing something dumb, immoral or illegal? In Smart Way #25 we covered self-discipline, which is probably what these folk had to start out with. But in the end, they clearly lacked that quality that holds us back from harming ourselves or others: self-control.

People who lack self-control ruin their lives through poor judgement or impulsive behaviour. It might be triggered by not handling boredom, performance pressure, peer pressure or even success and fame. If your behaviour starts spiralling downwards, pull yourself up before the wheels start to fall off!

There’s an old proverb that says, ‘Like a city whose walls are broken down is a man who lacks self-control.’ It brings home to us just how vulnerable we can become in the face of temptations, or under the control of others.

Remember, drive and determination alone aren’t enough to keep you on track.

To ensure your on-going success, you need both self-discipline and self-control. Whether you need to push in (self-discipline) or pull back (self-control), developing both these abilities will pay huge dividends in your life.

Read more in Making It On my Own; 52 Smart Ways to Smash It in the Real World. You can also work on developing traits that keep you safe at my April MIOMO 4-day course.