What Every Day Self-Sabotage Is Like And How To Stop Doing It

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What is self-sabotage, anyway? Why do we always frustrate our good habits and intentions, and tell ourselves that we’re not enough, not worth it, lesser than average?

Self-sabotage is when we end up intentionally messing ourselves up on our way to happiness and achieving our dreams.

You know what you should do, what would make you happy, successful, healthy and content: shopping less, exercising more, waking up early and going to bed at a reasonable hour, meeting potential partners who make you feel great, and getting your work done well and on time. But, sometimes unconsciously, we end up doing the exact opposite.

At first, indulging in our worst instincts feels great. We eat too much sugar, skip a day at the gym, slack off at work and think, “we need a break.” And maybe, sometimes we do need a break. But then all we’re doing is sabotaging ourselves. We’re making it harder and harder to reach those goals at all.

Why do we do this? Why do we consistently give ourselves less than what we deserve? We all deserve to have a love that’s true and real, but more often we end up going back to exes or people who treated us terribly. We all deserve to feel good about ourselves and our bodies, but instead of reinforcing self-confidence, we tell ourselves that the effort isn’t worth it, that we’re not worth it, and we end up sabotaging our efforts.

At the core of self-sabotage is a lack of confidence and self-love. And we’re all guilty of it, especially women.

Women, somewhere deep within us, tend to think that we don’t deserve what we have, or what we want. We have aspirations, ambition and plans, but being aggressive toward our goals is seen as a bad thing, so we back off in order to be likable. We sabotage ourselves because we’re constantly told that we don’t measure up—whether it’s in the media or in magazines.

Self-sabotage is when we believe and begin to act on our worst opinions of ourselves. It’s a habit that requires a lot of effort to break, and a lot of fortitude to recognize when we fall into that pattern.

So how do we stop this?

Stop procrastinating

No one is going to reach your goals for you, and very, very few people are going to help. If you have a dream, do not wait until tomorrow, and tomorrow, and tomorrow to get started on it. Make a list of things you can do like, right now to help you get there. If you have a dream, you deserve to see it come true, and you have to do everything in your power to see that it does.

Practice self-love and positive reinforcement

It’s so easy to believe in all those bad things you tell yourself, that you’re not talented enough, that you’ll never be this or that. But it takes healthy self-love to silence those voices and to believe that you’re good enough just as you are, and that you deserve the ultimate happiness. The only way to truly believe in that is to tell yourself good things every day. Eventually, you won’t believe anything else.

Know your worth, and give yourself what you deserve

We all tend to fall into a pattern of unhealthy relationships because we don’t think we deserve better. We do—we all do. Everyone deserves to find someone who will love them truly and unconditionally. The sooner you believe that, the quicker you’ll find someone who will be that person for you. If you know your worth and act like it, other people will recognize your worth and will be attracted to you for your confidence and self-assurance.

On the other hand, you may be sabotaging a great relationship, because you don’t think you deserve the person, or the happiness they give you. You have to believe that you absolutely do, that you deserve every bit of happiness that comes your way.

Tend to your emotional needs

If someone, whether it’s a friend, family member or significant other, isn’t treating us well and it’s harming our happiness, it’s fine and totally in your best interest to confront that person, or even cut them out of our lives. As selfish as it sounds, you come first in your own life. Get it? Sometimes it’s good to be selfish. Your happiness only makes it easier for you to share that happiness around.

Forgive yourself

Nobody is perfect. If you don’t do everything perfectly right away, it’s important not to give up and start believing all those bad, untrue things again. If you make mistakes, trip up, you’re only human. No one has it all together, even movie stars and CEOs and your friends. No one. Not a single one of us. We’re all just doing our best.

About The Author
Lisa Lo Paro
Lisa is a freelance writer and bibliophile living on the outskirts of New York City. She likes 2 a.m. with a good book, takes cream in her coffee and heavily filters her photos. Check out her blog The Most Happy, her Instagram, and Twitter.