5 Ways To Stop Self-Sabotaging For Good

Do you self-sabotage and get in the way of your own happiness?

Self-sabotaging means engaging in negative self-talk and doubting yourself. Furthermore, it means that you often get in the way of your own happiness as you miss important opportunities because you lack confidence in your abilities. Negative self-talk and self-sabotage can sound like:

  • I am not good enough to/for …
  • I cannot …
  • I lack the skills to/for …
  • I do not deserve to …

Thinking that you cannot do something or that you do not deserve something can stop you from taking opportunities which would otherwise greatly contribute to your happiness. For example, you might miss out on landing the perfect job because you think that you are not qualified enough or that you lack the skills needed for the position. To ensure that you do not get in the way of your own happiness, you need to learn how to stop self-sabotaging.

There are 5 things you should do to stop self-sabotaging.

1. Understand that you self-sabotage

Many people are unaware of their negative self-talk and therefore, they do not even know that they are self-sabotaging. For this reason, the first (and most important) step to stopping your inner critic is to notice it. Some people self-sabotage as their self-talk mimics the ‘tough love’ which they have experienced as children. However, there is a fine line between ‘tough love’ and self-destruction. Being too critical of yourself and your abilities can limit you and ultimately cause you pain.

2. Recognize self-sabotaging habits

Once you acknowledge that you self-sabotage, try to recognize the various ways in which you do so. Do you procrastinate? Do you engage in critical, negative self-talk? Do you consciously (or unconsciously) sabotage and ruin your relationships? Do you abuse food or drugs? Understanding that these actions are self-sabotaging habits will make them an active choice rather than something you are unaware of doing. By being aware that you have a choice, you become more in control.

3. Notice what triggers you

If you notice a sudden dip in your mood, pause and reflect. Ask yourself why you have suddenly started feeling so upset. If nothing external has happened, your mood has most likely been affected by something internal (namely, your inner critic). Try to trace back your thoughts to figure out what particular thought triggered and upset you. It is worth noting that negative self-talk can be influenced by external factors. For instance, your mood might have changed after your boss, your father, or your partner said something that triggered negative thoughts.

4. Find your voice

When you know who you are, what you value, and what you want in life, you will find your voice. Finding your voice means being able to stand up and speak up for the things you believe in. When you are confident in your voice, you trust yourself and know your potential. Therefore, you are less prone to believing the harsh words of your inner critic and saboteur.

5. Replace negative self-talk with positive words

Reframe your thoughts and change the way you speak to yourself. By replacing the negative words of your inner critic with positive self-talk, you eliminate your triggers. Subsequently, you ensure that you do not suffer from ‘inexplicable’ dips in your mood. While changing the way you think and talk about yourself will undoubtedly be difficult, it will make all the difference. Positive self-talk has the power to motivate you and give you the strength that you need to seize the opportunities which present themselves.

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