I recorded a video for YouTube in December--when I knew that by this time of year--lots of people will have forgotten or dismissed their goals for the new year. While doing so, I identified the top five reasons that I have seen people self sabotage. Check out the video:
On the surface, it seems so stupid. Why would we purposely get in our own way? Actually, we don't. Self sabotage is not intentional. It comes from underlying fears of failure, success, limiting beliefs, imposter syndrome, etc. The thought of breaking out of the comfort of what we know to face the great unknown is what undermines our best efforts. For our ancient ancestors, this was protective. This meant survival. Go with what you know and do not break out of your usual patterns. That will keep you alive. It's been hard-wired in our DNA for a long time.
Knowing that many famous people have done this (past presidents, tv stars, artists--think George Washington, Abraham Lincoln, Whitney Houston) is a reminder that this can happen to anyone. It does not matter how much success you have cultivated. Smart people do counterintuitive things that mess up their lives.
Let's come back to your life and what you want. Let's consider the things you'd like to accomplish--the goals that keep your attention even if you aren't working on them. Has it been months, years, decades that you'd like to clean out your boxes in the basement or lose the baby weight or get a new job or speak your truth and get your life back? Whatever keeps your attention even if you push it to the recesses of your mind deserves to be looked at. What have you been doing to stay stuck? What would happen if you allowed yourself room to do something else? Remove the barriers to your success. Give up the patterns of self sabotage? It would be different. It would feel different. What else? Can you dare to see yourself in a new light, shining bright?
The past two years have given us extra time to be introspective. This covid crisis has called into question what matters to us. Now that we are coming out of it (please!) it's time to emerge from the isolation and darkness and reconsider where you'd like to be going. Is what you have going on right now enough for you? If so--GREAT! If not--then take some time rediscovering what really gives your life meaning--and what it would be like to live your life in freedom of self sabotaging behaviors. Be on your own side--the side of you that pursues what you want, fears and all.