If you find that you are not moving progressively in the direction of your dreams and goals, or that you begin projects and never finish them, most likely you are sabotaging yourself somewhere in the process. This could be from negative self-beliefs or unhealthy behaviors, a fear of failure or success, or a combination of these things. It is important to realize that sabotage will limit your ability to move toward your goals and the future that you desire.
In this article, I will share with you 5 steps to stop self-sabotage. Self-sabotage prevents or limits you from achieving your goals due to negative self-image, fears and a lack of confidence. Often times, we are our own biggest enemy. We have a mental tug-of-war between the conscious and the subconscious mind. The fear of failure, lack of confidence, and fear of change is in our subconscious mind, causing us much grief.
1. Discover why you are sabotaging yourself.
As crazy as it sounds, many people sabotage themselves on a routine basis. This isn’t done intentionally or even knowingly often times; it is just a mechanism that many have built up within themselves throughout the years that simply keeps them within their “comfort zone.” What they fail to realize is that they are actually missing out on some of the best things life could offer them if they only step out and defeat this ideology.
The reason why self-sabotage is prevalent is because it is an outer manifestation of an inner struggle with shame, anger, or unworthiness. To begin to make progress, it is vital that you identify the areas where you are practicing self-sabotage. Look at the various areas of your life, such as finances, health, career and relationships. Determine which areas you need to defeat this monster in.
To give you an example, I will present an overview of an eye-opening discovery I made concerning myself and why I was sabotaging myself.
I bought myself a journal book for the purpose of getting back into writing after a time of inactivity. I had barely begun writing when negative voices and comments began to attack me. Why bother? You will never really do anything with your writing anyway. What makes you think you will progress this time? Who do you think you are? What do you think you could ever do for anyone else by your writing? They are all just dreams, not reality. And on and on it went.
I was being bullied by my own mind. For whatever reason, that day was the wrong day to pick on me! I decided then and there I was going to work this out. I was tired of living a life without fulfillment and purpose because every time I would try to succeed I would be shot down before barely beginning. I knew I needed to discover why I did this to myself, and I needed to look deep inside to combat this ugliness. It was high time for me to arise and conquer! After some soul searching of my own, I discovered I had a fear of rejection, ridicule or not being accepted. I had been feeding myself self-limiting negative beliefs and sabotaging my own progress in life.
2. Journal, journal, journal.
One of the best tools, I have found, when embarking on a course of self-discovery and change, is to invest in a journal-type notebook that allows you to write out the many things that you discover, feel and think.
A few simple guidelines about journal writing:
• There are no rules.
• Write freely without concern with grammar.
• Express yourself openly.
• This is for your eyes only.
When you first begin to journal, it may be intimidating to see the empty page. Some people love an empty page and are full of thoughts and inspiration. Others may stare blankly at the page without any idea of what to say.
The main thing is just to begin to WRITE. It doesn’t matter what the topic is. Whatever is on your mind, just begin to express it. There are many sites online that offer Journal Prompts to help you begin to write. I find the more freedom of expression you have in your journal the more useful it is. I love motivational and inspirational quotes! Sometimes I will just write a quote down and then it opens my mind for response.
Doodle, draw, or write down lyrics to songs you like. Whatever feels good to you, simply do it! I love having a splash of color so I add scrap booking material onto some of my pages or photos. You may just surprise yourself with how creative you can become.
3. Practice positive “mental chatter.”
One of the most powerful ways to destroy self-limiting beliefs is through positive self-talk. Whether you realize it or not, you talk to yourself every day. Self-talk is the conversation that goes on in your mind about your performance and behavior.Your self-talk is built by your thoughts. Apparently we each have over 50,000 thoughts each day (that must have been an interesting study!).
Most of us are involved in constant mental chatter. We talk to ourselves all day long and, unfortunately, this self -talk is frequently negative. Often it is peppered with guilt about our past or anxiety about our future. This negativity destroys our hope. Each conversation that you have with yourself reinforces in your mind who you are and what you are capable of and, most critically, builds or demolishes your self-esteem and self-worth.
The approach to changing the way you speak to yourself is quite simple and yet, it can be so difficult to put into practice merely because you are unaccustomed to speaking to yourself in positive ways.
Once you begin to put this into practice, however, several things will happen. First, you will realize just how often you berate yourself. Secondly, you will begin to adjust the way you talk to yourself. Thirdly, you will begin to think differently about yourself, as your self-esteem and confidence builds.
4. Stop comparing yourself with others.
Do you constantly compare yourself to others? Comparison doesn’t motivate us to do more or be better; instead, it makes us feel even more inadequate. When we compare ourselves with others, we place unmerited worth on the person we are focused on. There are so many variables in each person’s life that it is unrealistic to try to be who they are. By comparing ourselves with others, we are lessening the view of our own beauty and potential. We are not made to be clones of one another. We need to be true to our authentic self rather than a replica of someone else. When we compare, we limit our own potential. We break away from our true selves by imitating or wanting to imitate someone else. There is nothing more liberating than being authentic!
5. Become your own best friend.
How often do we overlook other people’s faults and mistakes and then come down hard on ourselves for the same type of behavior? We give time and attention to everyone in our world and leave no time to nurture ourselves. When dealing with self-sabotaging behavior, it is crucial to become your own best friend. Personally, I feel it is a vital key for anyone desiring to reach their potential and live a quality life. Self sabotage causes us to run away from ourselves and fill our days with activity. Set time aside to spend quality time doing things that you love to do. Embark on a journey of self love and discovery. Unleash your true potential. You are an amazing person and it is time to end sabotaging yourself. Stop sabotaging yourself and live in freedom!
Featured photo credit: Photo Pin via