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Often, your biggest obstacle to achieving your goals and dreams is yourself. It’s not the rest of the world that’s getting in your way — they’re too busy working on their own issues. That’s the good news! If you’re the one getting in the way of your success then you’re the only one who can stop self sabotaging your efforts.

Self sabotage is anything you do that gets in the way of your intentions. For example, you have a project due and instead of getting it done, you binge watch Netflix; or you’re working on getting off sugar but someone brings a birthday cake to work and you indulge.

Everyone has their own special stash of self-sabotaging tools. Some favorites are procrastinating, listening to your critical inner voice, negative thinking or abusing drugs or alcohol. If you want to stop self sabotage, a good place to start is to have a look at the times in your life when you failed to reach your goals or intentions and identify exactly what you did to get in your own way.

For example, if my goal is to get up at 5:00 am during the week and go for a walk before getting ready for work, playing video games until midnight rather than going to bed at a reasonable hour is self-sabotaging behavior. If you know that when you start playing video games you lose track of time, set a timer so you know when to quit and get to bed.

Here are some additional strategies you can explore to help stop self-sabotaging behaviors:

  • Be crystal clear when goal setting. Spending months working towards a goal, only to change your mind about what you want is self-sabotaging behavior. Indecisiveness is a success killer. Be absolutely clear about what you want, write your goals down and be consistent.
  • Be crystal clear when goal setting. Spending months working towards a goal, only to change your mind about what you want is self-sabotaging behavior. Indecisiveness is a success killer. Be absolutely clear about what you want, write your goals down and be consistent.
  • Notice how you waste time. What do you do when you procrastinate? Do you like to watch TV, go through emails, watch YouTube, go shopping or make yourself a snack? The best way to stop wasting time is to recognize when you are wasting time. Make a list of your time-wasting behaviors and pay attention when they happen.
  • Understand the repercussions of your time-wasting behaviors. They may feel good in the short term but if you continue with these behaviors, you’ll likely fall short of achieving your goals and dreams. Keep your eye on the prize.
  • Stop negative self-talk. Isn’t life challenging enough already? Try to catch that critical inner voice in action. When you do, notice what you are saying to yourself, stop, and saying something more positive instead.
  • Hang out with positive, supportive people. Sometimes, the people around you can sabotage your efforts. This is really a form of self-sabotage because you choose your friends. Make the choice to spend time with those who support your success.
  • Learn to deal with discomfort. Self-sabotage is a strategy for dealing with discomfort. If you weren’t uncomfortable at all, you’d never sabotage yourself in the first place. Understand that discomfort, or getting out of your comfort zone, is necessary if you want to change your life in a meaningful way.
  • Visualize success. The idea of success might be more stressful than you think, especially if you’ve experienced numerous failures. Part of you might believe it’s better to deal with the “devil you know.” Take a few minutes each day and visualize yourself reaching your goals. Notice how it feels. Keep up this routine until success feels completely natural.
  • Avoid comparing yourself to others. We have our own strengths and weaknesses and when on the path to reaching your goals, the only comparison you should be making is how you’re doing from one day to the next. Constant, steady improvement is the key to success.

Now it’s your turn, comment below what kinds of things are getting in your way… I would love to hear from you, and if you are looking for any kind of help or support in making the changes you desire this year – let me know how I can best support you towards your success.

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