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How to Stop Sabotaging Yourself


Have you ever made it your weight loss goal only to relapse a week later?

Have you seen the job ad of your dreams, but miss the application deadline because you weren't sure if it was right for you?

Have you set and re-set your "quit by" date (ie. quit smoking, quit sugar, quit your job) - for the last several years?

You have been self-sabotaging and it is time to stop!

Read on to learn about self-sabotage and how to make strides toward your ideal life!

What is self-sabotage?

Self-sabotage are actions you take that interfere with your goals.

This can take the form of inaction, procrastination, self-medication, over-eating or self-harm.

Often we aren't aware we are sabotaging ourselves. We blame our upbringing, our circumstances, our partners, the economy, the government, the weather and so on! In reality we may be our own worst enemies! Once you realize you are self-sabotaging you can take control!

Self-sabotage is a protective mechanism gone awry - usually out of fear or guilt.

Is your goal to be extremely successful? But this makes you feel scared of the responsibility that comes with success?

To be happier in your relationship than your best friend? But this makes you feel guilty that you could be happier than him or her?

To have a great physique? But you feel shame at the thought of people admiring your figure?

To work less and make more than your hardworking parents? Guilt bomb!

To get promoted to management? But you worry you'll be found out as the imposter you are?

How to Identify and Over Come Self-Sabotage

Identifying and over-coming self-sabotage involves a lot of self-reflection and many Q&A sessions with yourself or a counsellor or psychologist.

The first place you may be sabotaging yourself is from the get-go!

You may not even be honest with yourself or fully aware of what you truly want in life!

So, first get honest about your desires!

Does even reading the word desire make you cringe?

Words hold power! Desire is a strong and powerful word!

So powerful that to have no desire is a sign of depression!

Desire can be associated with sin and selfishness bringing on feelings of guilt and shame - it is precisely these feelings you need to recognize and overcome!

So ask yourself - if you could do anything, be anyone, have any amount of money, live anywhere - what would the answers be?

No, truly - what would the answers be in your heart of hearts?

Re-examine your answers - are they your true desires? Or, what you think is realistic? Or, what society has taught you to desire?

There is no reason you can not pursue something beyond what you would consider realistic or socially acceptable - with the exception of committing crime!

If you aim too low and don't make it up to that low bar you set for yourself, you will certainly be disappointed. If you set your bar high and come up just under that much higher bar, you will have reached a goal higher than your "realistic" one!

Start paying attention to your thoughts. Notice where you are holding yourself back.

Where you hear an internal monologue of I can't or I shouldn't pay particular attention.

When you make any decision - from the shirt you put on in the morning to the cream you put in your coffee - ask yourself:

"Is this is line with my true desires?"

If it's not and you follow through anyways you are self-sabotaging.

Keep track of these small instances of self-sabotage and notice a pattern. What area of your life are you sabotaging? Your career? Your love life? Your health? All areas?

What excuses are you making? You're too tired? Your husband didn't put on the coffee pot this morning? You don't have a husband? Its raining? Its a weekday? Its a weekend? Its a work day? Its a holiday? You don't have enough knowledge/skill/power/colour eyelashes? You don't deserve nice things or success?

What are you protecting yourself from by taking an action that isn't in line with your desire? Shame?

Ridicule?

Failure?

What is the worst thing that would happen if you failed?

What is the worst thing that would happen if you succeeded?

Now, after reading this, you may realize you’ve been self-sabotaging a little more than you thought you were.

Rest assured - it’s very common and very normal.

You have been programmed a certain way your whole life. Changing your underlying negative thought and action patterns can take time and effort.

Challenge your way of thinking and your behaviours while remembering to be kind to yourself.

Think about someone you know who needs help right now.

Maybe there is someone you know who you think is holding themselves back right now?

What would you tell them if you could?

How would you help them?

Now imagine that person is you.

If you are ready to move beyond self-sabotage and reach your goals reach out to see how coaching could help you!

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