are you self-sabotaging?
Have you ever heard of self-sabotage? Have you ever considered whether you have self-sabotaged before? I can almost guarantee that you have.
Self-sabotage is exhibiting behaviors or creating problems that are contrary to your long-term goals. A few common (and more minor) self-sabotaging behaviors include:
- Excessive social media or entertainment consumption (Netflix, video games, endless scrolling)
One thing these all have in common is that they help avoid. The avoidance comes in different varieties (see above) and also for different reasons. You may be avoiding certain emotions that you don’t want to feel. You may be avoiding a difficult situation. You many be avoiding reality because it’s not what you want to deal with.
Some more tangible (and painful) examples of self-sabotage are:
- Cheating on a partner
- Blowing a big presentation
- Failing an important test
All of these versions of self-sabotage – big or small – are routed in fear. Fear of success, fear of failure, fear of judgement - whatever your variety of fear is. Fear is a bitch. It’s stops you from asking for what you need. It stops you from trying new things. It stops you from going bigger in every area of your life.
Here’s how fear causes self-sabotage:
- You’re afraid of making the wrong choice so you avoid making one at all
- You’re afraid of judgement so you don’t promote your business or new venture
- You’re afraid of success so you hold back when you should press forward
- You’re afraid of having hard conversations so you betray a friend instead of talking to them
- You’re afraid of your feelings so you numb them with wine
Most of the time when we look at these types of things, we don’t think, “oh yeah that guy definitely cheated on his wife because he can’t handle all of the fame and success he’s getting” (looking at you, Tiger) but a lot of these mistakes of the I-don’t-know-what-happened variety are self-sabotage! I’ll say it again for emphasis – fear is a bitch!
The thing about self-sabotage is that we really, truly can’t see it for what it is unless we’re paying attention. It is TOTALLY subconscious. If you knew that you were sabotaging your goals + dreams, you’d probably cut it out, right? To combat self-sabotage you have to start by a) recognizing the behaviors and b) resolving or pushing through the underlying fear.
One of my favorite questions to ask myself and anyone else who will listen is – what would you do if you weren’t afraid. And don’t try to tell me that you’ve mastered your fear because that means you’re not looking hard enough. And definitely don’t try to tell me that you’re not brave enough because courage is a muscle – just ask Brene.
So let’s hear it – where do you think you’re self-sabotaging? What can you do to move past it? As always, if you need help, leave it in the comments!