Self-sabotage saps our motivation and drive over time, and remaining idle will only allow self-sabotage to grow onto us like a second skin…
Have you ever tried to reach a goal like losing weight, getting a new job, curbing overspending, or finding a satisfying relationship, only to be disappointed when your efforts didn’t bring you any closer to your dreams? Have you ever avoided getting close to people, or wanted to connect with someone so badly that your insecurity and neediness scared them off? If any of this sounds familiar, you’re stuck in a cycle of self-sabotage.
Simply defined, self-sabotage shows up as thoughts and/or behaviors that undermine our best interests and conscious intentions. It’s a phrase many of us throw around in casual conversation, and a phenomenon we easily identify in the lives of our friends and loved ones. But don’t worry! Understanding that we all do it from time to time and the impetus to self-sabotage is rooted in our biology because humans live to achieve rewards and avoid threats.
When these two drives are in balance, all is good. However, sometimes we begin to prioritize avoiding threats (not just physical, but in the present day, these threats are more psychological or emotional).
For example, we might fear rejection from a loved one, being embarrassed during public speaking, or failing at a new job. And this causes us to hit that self-sabotage trigger and do things that take us away from our goals.
Understanding Your Particular Brand Of Self-Sabotaging
Identifying the factors that impact you the most.
1) Low or Shaky Self-Esteem: you’d think children were the only ones in need of assistance to build a firm foundation for their character. Alas, adults too, need to be reassured, need for their efforts to be acknowledged, need to be shown appreciation. And when that support isn’t present in balanced ways, it tends to invite us to be unsure of ourselves, which could start a self- sabotage pattern.
2 ) Internalized beliefs from childhood: Growing up, some of us were victims to the wrong kind of exposure. Exposure that’s a little hard to talk about publicly because we still feel the scars left from a certain time. Some wounds take longer to heal than others.
Understanding being a victim completely destabilizes you from the control you need to protect yourself mentally and physically. Acknowledging your own sabotage is how you free yourself from feelings of guilt and resentment towards a past experience that can no longer affect your days in the future! Childhood beliefs can be hard to let go of sometimes. Those internalized beliefs from childhood will follow you until you’re ready to sit with them to discover more clarity about why you kept them by your side . These internalized beliefs turn into spiritual guides if you allow them. Chat with them, and watch them leave to set you free.
3) Fear of the unknown
Having a fear of to go new places, and trying new things because of that creepy voice in our minds thats trying to convince us something bad is going to happen the minute we decide to step out of our comfort zone needs to vanish ASAP. Fear of the unknown is fearing an opportunity life gives you to expand yourself to meet your higher self. Don’t ever sabotage yourself into thinking you don’t a chance into diving in to the unknown and finding a pot of gold! Your limits will define you.
4) Excessive need for control
Most of us can fully agree with having an excessive need for control in our daily lives. It’s only fair to feel this way. Unfortunately, anything done in excessive manners turns out to be toxic. Taking the time to analyze what really needs your control and what doesn’t makes it easier and saves you a whole lot of time and stress. Breathe. Control, but also remember you are not a robot and the most amazing source of inspiration comes to us when we least expect it. An excessive need for control comes to us when we LOOK for the control instead of HAVING the control.
Once you’ve identified your factor(s), it’s time to pay attention to your thoughts. After all, every behavior is preceded by a thought, even if you didn’t notice that thought to begin with. Take stock in what you’re thinking.
Finally, always approach your decisions from a ‘values-driven’ place. Values are what you want your life to stand for and what you want to be remembered by. Unlike goals, they can’t be checked off a list, but are things you believe are core to who you are. For example, a goal is to run a marathon, whereas values include integrity, adventurousness, and continuous learning. So, when in doubt, and when you recognize that a potential self-sabotaging act is lurking, ask yourself, “Would this action honor my values?” If not, don’t proceed, and choose another action instead that is consistent with who you want to be and how you want to be remembered.