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Overcoming self-sabotage

The truth is that we sabotage ourselves because a part of our unconscious wants to protect us. From uncertainty, the unknown, pain and fear.

That voice of self-sabotage it’s not going to help you grow.

If you’re feeling overwhelmed, confused and stuck in a life that always feels like something is missing, but KNOW that your goals are waiting for you, by the end of this article you will have the tools to get to know yourself better than you ever have and you’ll know exactly what to do to reach your potential.

First of all, we need to understand exactly what self-sabotage is so you are able to identify it next time it happens - then we can identify how self-sabotage is showing up in your life and holding you back. Lastly, we will cover the 3 skills to help you overcome self-sabotage

Self-sabotage Is when we actively or passively take steps to prevent ourselves from reaching our goals. This behaviour can affect every aspect of our life, whether it’s fitness goals, health, career or relationships.

Being able to identify how self-sabotage is showing up in your life is a crucial part in creating a plan of action to overcome the challenges you are facing.It’s about getting to the heart of your roadblocks. It’s about being vulnerable, to allow for true growth.

It’s worth saying that it’s not always easy to pinpoint.

Self-sabotage can show up in different ways, such as procrastination, lack of self-care, perfectionism, making a change but not prioritizing the actions required, negative self-talk, impostor syndrome, emotional eating, avoidance, being ‘’all in’’ or ‘’ all out’’ for example.


Why does self sabotage happen?

Thought patterns + habits

It’s quick and easy to follow previous thought patterns and actions/ habits. However, just because it’s something that we’ve become accustomed to , it doesn’t mean that we’re stuck in it. It’s going to take effort, but it is possible. We can change the way our brain is wired.

What is your definition of self-sabotage and how does it show up for you?

When we self sabotage, it doesn’t just appear out of thin air. A situation, someone or something triggered it. Our self control is turned off and Instant gratification is turned ON.

There are 3 steps that we can take to finally overcome self-sabotage, so that you can stop daydreaming about those big audacious goals and start living them.

  1. Self-awareness.

Most problems aren’t actually problems, but more so a lack of awareness. You can’t change if you don’t know what to change or know how the path of reaching your goals looks like.

Self-awareness is a skill that you can start working on through reflection, understanding what triggers your negative emotions, paying attention to how you tend to act and behave in certain situations, WHY?

Ask yourself WHEN do you get in your own way?

HOW do you do that? With WHO?


Does it make you feel better in the moment?

You’re not fully committed?

You don’t believe in yourself?

2. Mindset.

Mindset is the lens we use to see and make meaning of the world around us, ourselves and others. It determines your thoughts, beliefs, actions and your eventual success in your goal/ growth.

Our mindset plays a big role in how we perceive challenges, overcome obstacles, stress, your belief in your ability to change (a skill, attribute, habit etc) and adopt defensive or self‐sabotaging behaviours.

Research shows that having a fixed mindset

Having a growth mindset isn’t about reading self-help books. A person with a growth mindset sees challenges as opportunities, views failure as a chance to grow, believes that skills can be developed and is inspired by the success of others.

On the contrary, a person with a fixed mindset avoids challenges and sees failure as a proof of not being good enough, believes that skills and attributes are innate, gives up easily and feels threatened by the success of others.

It’s not all black or white - we can have a fixed mindset in certain areas and a growth mindset in others.

By being (or becoming) self aware, where do you notice any fixed mindset tendencies coming up that relate to the self-sabotaging situations we talked about earlier?

Where do you feel like you have more of a growth mindset and how has that benefited you?

Lastly, where can you bring in more growth? How will that help you with self sabotaging?

3. All or nothing mindset or dichotomous thinking.

The tendency to think in terms of polar opposites—that is, in terms of the best and worst— healthy or unhealthy — good or bad — ALL IN OR ALL OUT.

This kind of thinking is creating assumptions such as

‘’ if I had one cookie, I might as well have all of them’’ or ‘

’If I missed one training session I might as well not bother about the rest, start fresh on Monday’’ ,

‘’I don’t have a perfect plan, so why bother?’’ ,

‘’if I can’t be perfect, there’s no point. ‘’

‘’ I don’t have time for everything, so I will not bother trying’’

These assumptions will determine your thoughts, beliefs, mindset and thus your self-sabotaging behaviours

Right now, you probably feel that there’s a million roadblocks between you at this point in time, and the place you ultimately want to be. Because the self-doubt and procrastination always creep in. Through applying the actions steps above you can start rewriting your script and making meaningful progress on your goals, overcome your inner critic and go confidently after your goals.

If you are looking to maximise your results, look & feel at your best, let's chat .

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