There isn’t a living person on earth that genuinely wants to cause them selves pain and failure. Seriously, who purposely seeks that cycle of two steps forward and four steps back? There can be many reasons we form a habit of self-sabotage. The main reason being, we don’t feel safe or protected. It’s what moves us through flight, fight or freeze – survival.
Main reasons for self-sabotage:
Not feeling good enough
There will always be times where we’re out of our comfort zone. When we feel stretched as we step into unfamiliar situations. Low self esteem and worth will be an unconscious force pushing you into a doom and gloom mindset, instead of what you’re striving for.
Do I deserve it?
What if I fail?
A conditioned belief
From the moment we’re born, we’re exposed to our family’s beliefs from their experiences. These are learned beliefs and continue to develop from our schooling, friends and environment. A lot of these beliefs are unconscious. So we’re not always aware of them.
Money is the root of all evil
It’s safer not to take any risks
A need for external control
When we have feelings and thoughts that we not able to manage, we become overwhelmed. What we can’t control (manage) internally, we start creating external control. Some of us may be inclined to call this being organized. However, when it tips into the obsessive scale, it’s a false sense of control and where negative habits begin.
Excitement and anxiety are at the same level of intense emotion, expressed at opposite ends of the scale. It’s a surge in energy and feelings that can tip either way. This habit can be easily formed and become addictive. Constant anxiety makes you question everything. Anxiety in a nutshell means you are analyzing how everything relates to YOU.
On the other hand, constant excitement creates a superficial level engagement. Always looking for that next high of instant gratification, instant pleasure.
Centre of attention
You would think that if people knew they were doing this, they would simply STOP IT…
Like I said earlier, no one purposely self-sabotages. It’s not a conscious process, more an unconscious pattern.
Let’s look at how to step out of a self-sabotaging pattern.
Here are four ways that you can start right now:
1. Mindful Observation
Imagine there are two minds within us. One being the monkey mind, always chatting and giving an opinion of what’s right or wrong. What we should and shouldn’t be doing. Then the second mind is the observing mind. When the monkey mind is in full force, don’t try to stop it. Simply switch your focus onto the observing mind and watch the chatter. It’s like watching your own version of reality TV within yourself. The more you’re able to step into the second mind, the more you notice a self-sabotaging pattern. That’s where choice comes into play.
2. Step outside yourself
We all know that rush of emotion and that instant eruption of energy – an over reaction! Every person feels their own emotions intensely. What we may not realize is that, emotions that we feel, may not be of our own choice; however our behaviour is. When you feel that rush of emotion, try imagining stepping out of your body as you breathe. Observe your emotions and with a bit of practice, it gets much easier.
3. Ebb and flow
There is a rhythm to life and we don’t always understand our pitfalls at the time. It’s only in hindsight are we able to understand a timeline of events. Never underestimate the power of synchronicity especially when we’re in our natural flow, our own rhythm in life. Take time to pause and reset.
We’re only limited by what we can conjure up in our imagination. Who ever thought that one-day, we would have self-driving cars. Well it’s happening! If you’re inspired by something, just imagine.
Don’t let your two steps forward and four steps back be your undoing. It’s simply an opportunity to pause, observe and take note of your own patterns. The real magic happens when you’re able to identify, move through them and find a new rhythm that supports you.