There’s a lot of truth to the quote, “We have met the enemy, and he is us.” We get in our own way far more than life, other people, or bad luck sabotage our success. We really are our own worst enemy at times. You'd be amazed by how much easier your life would be if you weren't constantly sabotaging your success.
It boggles the mind why we stand in our own way, but we do. Understanding that fact is half the battle to overcoming it.
Try these techniques to stop sabotaging yourself:
Let go of the past. Mistakes from the past don’t mean that you’re doomed to failure in the future. The past should be used as educational material, not as a predictor of the future. Leave your past in the past and create the future you desire.
Avoid talking to yourself unless you’re going to say something nice. You spend too much time saying negative things to yourself. Eventually, you begin to believe them. Such negative input gives you an incorrect opinion of yourself and your capabilities. Ensure that your self-talk is supportive and positive.
Notice your habits that sabotage your success. Think about what you want to be successful at and notice your habits that stand in your way. For example, if you want to lose weight, but you eat a bag of chips every time you're stressed, that habit is sabotaging your success.
● Make a list of all the habits that sabotage your success. Write down all the ways in which those habits inhibit your success. What is the cost of each of those habits? Being aware of the damage these habits cause can make it easier to change them.
Define your fear. All self-sabotage is rooted in fear. What exactly are you afraid of? Are you
afraid of embarrassing yourself? Are you afraid of finding out that you're not capable? Are you afraid of success? Are you afraid of how people will view you?
● Understand the basic fear that is causing you to sabotage yourself. Unless you can either get over that fear or remove it, you'll continue to get in your own way.
Know your ceiling. Notice how far you can go before you begin sabotaging yourself. For example, perhaps you're stuck at a particular income level. What income level do you get stuck at? If you're trying to lose weight, at what point do you begin sabotaging yourself? We all have a ceiling for each part of our lives. Understand yours and seek to understand why.
Identify and change your beliefs. What are the beliefs that stand in your way? For example, do you believe that you're naturally a chubby person that can never get below a certain weight? Do you believe that you can never be a successful writer because you failed high school English?
● Look at all of your beliefs related to the part of your life you want to be more successful in. Which of those beliefs are getting in your way?
Notice the people that get in your way. Sometimes, we allow people into our lives that don't really want the best for us. You'll find that few people are truly interested in seeing you live up to your full potential.
● Avoid believing that it’s acceptable to allow someone to get in your way. If they choose to be an obstacle, consider removing them from your life.
The good news is that easier to control yourself than it is to control others or circumstances outside of yourself. Since you are the source of your challenges, you also have the power to eliminate them. Never underestimate how much you’re standing in your own way!