Stop Self-Sabotage: 10 Steps To Truly Love You

Self-sabotaging behavior is like a road block you can’t seem to get around. It stops you from being yourself. It ruins relationships, prevents you from achieving your dreams and makes you feel horrible about yourself. Most of the time it becomes such a natural part of life that you don’t think there’s any way to stop it. But there are ways to get better. You don’t have to keep doing this. It’ll take hard work, time and patience, but you can get there. I believe in you.

  1. Focus on what you’re doing right. A classic self-sabotage trait is always focusing on what you’re doing wrong. Why try to do anything new when you can’t do anything right? It’s a self-defeating mentality. Sit down and make a list of everything you’re doing right. Did you get a new job? Focus on the fact you got the job instead of thinking you should’ve gotten a different job. Only focus on things you’ve succeeded it. It doesn’t matter how small.
  2. Recognize your true worth. People care about you for a reason. You do have worth. Think about the differences you’ve made in other people’s lives and talk to friends and family to see what you mean to them. You deserve to feel better. You’re priceless and you should always feel like you’re good enough.
  3. Stop comparing yourself to others. One of the most obvious types of self-sabotaging behavior is constantly comparing yourself to other people. But your life and needs aren’t like anyone else’s. It’s not a competition. Focus on what you want and need, and compare yourself based on the progress you’re making towards your goals.
  4. Stop being overly critical of others. You want to make yourself feel better, so you spend your energy criticizing others. You might not even realize how self-destructive this truly is, but the more you criticize everyone else, the less people will want to be around you and the less time you have to concentrate on bettering yourself. Stop focusing on others and focus on yourself.
  5. Define a purpose for your life. When you have nothing to achieve, you don’t really accomplish anything in life. You’re afraid of failure so you don’t set goals. But everyone needs a purpose – it’s what helps you grow as a person. You’ll fail sometimes, sure, but you still learn from trying new things. Start by setting small goals and achieving them, then set larger goals when you’re ready. Having a purpose ensures you keep moving forward and evolving as a person.
  6. Uncover why you’re doing this to yourself. You might realize you have a problem, but you don’t know why. Sometimes the only way to stop the behavior is to figure out why you’re doing it to begin with. It could stem from a bad childhood, a major failure, a horrible breakup, bullying or any number of things. Be honest with yourself and confront your past. When did these behaviors start? Once you understand the why, you can face your demons and overcome them.
  7. Find strength in surviving your past. No matter what happened in your past to make you this way, you survived it. Sure, you have baggage – everyone does. Instead of focusing on what’s wrong now, focus on how strong you are. It takes strength to go through bad situations and make it through to the other side. Find strength and healing in the fact that the past is over and you made it through.
  8. Shut off your negative thoughts. This is one of the hardest things to do. Negative thoughts are an everyday part of your life – even people without self sabotaging behavior have them on a regular basis. The difference is, you let those thoughts rule your life. They’re all you hear, but you have to make a conscious decision to shut those thoughts off. For every negative thought, counter with a positive one. It will take time. It might seem like you’re fighting a losing battle, but it does help. Before long, positive thoughts will be second nature.
  9. Stop blaming others. It’s easy to blame everyone else for how you feel. The truth is, you’re the only one who can control your feelings and actions. Blaming others doesn’t fix the problem. Bad things happen sometimes that cause us to spiral down into this destructive behavior. Focus your energy on fixing the problem instead of blaming others. They can’t fix you. Only you can do that.
  10. Get help. If nothing else works and the behavior is seriously affecting your life, it may be time to get help. You don’t have to do this alone. Talk to a close friend who can help point out when you’re relapsing. See a professional counselor. If substance abuse is your form of sabotage, check yourself into a rehab center. It’s okay to ask for help. The last thing you want to do is continue to live your life this way. You can overcome this.
Crystal Crowder is a freelance writer and blogger. She's a tech geek at heart, but loves telling it like it is when it comes to love, beauty and style. She's enjoys writing music, poetry and fiction and curling up with a great book. You can find her on Twitter @ccrowderwrites or check out her other writing on Medium.