Most people go through times when they have trouble getting their thoughts to align with their intentions. When that happens, it can hinder one from working through on their goals and moving to business success. It can get in the way as these types of thoughts are focusing on what’s wrong, what’s missing, or the negativity of the situation instead of the positives.
Self-sabotaging thoughts and behaviors occur when individuals act that are the opposite of what they want, and purposely prevent them from achieving the very things they say they want. Despite knowing they are betraying their desires, the individual will act on them regardless; examples can include: using drugs/alcohol to deal with a problem, overspending money they don’t have, calling off work without a valid reason, not finishing a work goal that could lead to getting written up; fear is the basis of self-sabotaging behaviors, as well as poor self-esteem and feeling unworthy somehow.
Here are some self-sabotaging thoughts you may experience and that may prevent you from the life you desire:
- I Don’t Like People – Many people, especially introverts, tend to focus their decisions on how many people will be around. They tend to make decisions that are not good for them because they are not comfortable being who they are. They may worry about what others think, if they’ll say the wrong thing and the like. Turn that thought around to going to events, or putting yourself out there, but focusing on how you can give yourself care during anxious moments around people. It’s okay to be who you are.
- I Am Too ____ — Anytime you start a thought with, I am “too” you get into trouble. People often worry about things that no one else ever thinks about them, mainly in a negative manner. They are already mind-reading and predicting someone else’s thoughts without knowing the truth. For example, if you find yourself saying you’re too fat, too dumb, too something — to accomplish a goal that you have you need to turn that around to setting up real steps that will get you to your goals. Also, why not turn those thoughts into positives, such as “I’m amazing” or I’m a great employee, spouse, person, etc.
- I’ll Do That When I ______ — You’ve probably said it before to yourself. “I’ll do that when I go back to school.” “I’ll do that when I have the time.” “I’ll do that when I have enough money” – you know the drill. Unless you need to do the thing in the blank, don’t allow that to get in your way. Procrastination and avoidance are fear-rooted, so identify the cause, write the goal, and plan – with dates – that you need to get whatever the task done. Set a timer and work for a short period of time, say 20 minutes, then see how long you can go; take a break and then start again. This will train your brain and override the fear center.
- I Can’t Do _____ — You may have heard your child, or yourself, or someone else state that “I can’t do math.” Or “I can’t cook.” The truth is, no one can do any of that without learning how to do it. No one just pops out of the womb knowing how to cook, write, read, or do math. Using ‘I can’t’ is actually you saying “I won’t’ – you are essentially giving up before you try. Anyone can learn whatever they want to learn given the time and effort to do it. Challenge yourself and see how it turns out – you will most likely be surprised.
- Saying I Should ____ — Have you ever heard that it’s important not to “should” all over everyone? Not only is it a bad idea to create “should” for others it’s a terrible idea to create them for yourself. Besides, who says you should? This is the same as ‘could, should, must’ – it’s a bar you set, usually based on someone else’ accomplishments. Whose expectations are you to meet – yours or someone else’s; this will allow you to look at the situation from a new angle to see if you want to have the goal or not.
- In the Past ___ — Dwelling on the past and what someone did to you, or what things were like, is not going to help you overcome self-sabotage. While it’s okay to use the past as a learning example, it’s not okay to use it as an excuse not to move forward. You can’t change the past so stop basing your current situation and accomplishments based on past events. Remember you are only in charge of yourself.
- In the Future ____ — Just like you do not want to focus on the past you also don’t want to be overly focused on later. This is a very vague statement, that without an end-goal will just remain a hope for tomorrow. Today is honestly all you have for sure. Focus on today and tomorrow will take care of itself.
- If I Was More Like Them – Never compare yourself to someone else in a negative way. It’s okay to look at what someone has accomplished, learn how to do it too, and follow their footsteps but don’t wish yourself away as only you can be you. Look at that person’s qualities you admire and self-assess to see if you, also, have them – we don’t always see things from another’s eyes.
These are just a few examples of self-sabotaging thoughts, along with some ways to stop. Whenever you find you are focused on a negative aspect of any situation, try to turn your mind around to focus on the positives. Be mindful that sometimes in life you’re going to experience a sad or negative time, that’s normal. The next time you have a self-sabotaging thought, ask yourself if you deserve to have what you are going after. If yes, then move forward; if not, then you need work on your self-esteem and confidence.
Achieving more in your business is having the right mindset that primes you to succeed.
If you find that you are self-sabotaging, stop and reach out for help. Contact us to get started today so you can reach your business and career goals. Mindset matters!