Imagine if you were trying to lose weight and someone stood directly in front of you with a piece of chocolate cake. Or, think about how you would feel if you were getting ready for a presentation and a colleague ignored your request to leave your office so you could collect your thoughts?
Do your thoughts go to sabotage? Would you ask yourself, why are they doing this to me?
Now, think about the times you get in your own way. You know going to the gym would help you to feel better about your body, but you don’t schedule time to go for a workout. Or, you want to lose weight, but instead of preparing a healthy, nutritious meal for lunch, you order in the hamburger and french fries with your colleague.
Does the word self-sabotage come to mind? After all, these are actions you are in control of, yet you don’t always do what’s best for you. Of course, I’m not speaking only to you. I’ve certainly engaged in self-sabotaging behavior, as have most people. A logical question would be “why?” yet the answer is not simple.
We are bombarded every day with messages, often conflicting ones. The best way to lose weight, the best time management system, the best way to do this…and that. Is there really only one “best” way to do something? I used to think so and that’s where self-sabotage showed up in my life. If I wasn’t able to do an activity the “best” way, I felt inadequate and then shut down. I stopped taking actions that I knew would make me feel better or accomplish more in my career. Who stopped me? ME!
After hitting rock bottom, I had to set measurable goals for ME and my career and then set priorities so I could take appropriate actions for success. I knew I had to get out of my own way if I wanted to be successful and live a fulfilled life.
First and foremost, I had to make myself a priority. I had to make time for the gym, even if it meant not meeting friends after work one day, or waking up earlier in the morning than I was used to doing. Sometimes it meant asking for help at work, something I was not comfortable doing but realized it was in my best interest, and ultimately the organization’s best interest, for me to do so.When I took care of myself and felt whole and complete, I was more productive at the office.
Secondly, I had to plan my meals so I knew what I was eating for breakfast, lunch and dinner. As long as I had my healthy food with me, I ate nutritious meals. If I left my meals to chance, I was heading directly into self-sabotage syndrome. It didn’t take long for extra weight to stick to my body and my mood to fluctuate.
Thirdly, I had to learn how to say “no.” Sounds simple, right? However, it is not easy to do so when you always want to please the people around you. I had to learn that saying “no” with integrity was really saying “yes” to me.
Overcoming self-sabotage takes muscle, like the muscles we build at the gym. When we’re not used to it, taking care of ourselves feels uncomfortable. But when we reach our goals and feel truly alive, when we enjoy the gift in each and every moment, the possibilities for achievement are truly endless.
- Write down all the ways you can make yourself a priority: time for the gym, getting a good night of sleep, etc.
- Notice how you get in your own way and write down the occurrences.
- Now, review some of the examples from #2 and write out steps you can take to make positive changes in your life.
- Celebrate your achievements in overcoming self-sabotage (perhaps with a special dinner or a new article of clothing).
- Notice how much happier and healthier you feel by taking care of yourself.
This assignment will help you understand how you can take responsibility for your health and well-being by getting out of your own way. If you are concerned about your nutrition and lifestyle routines and know you want to do things differently so you can best your best every day, contact me at or call 413-282-7286. At Bravo! Wellness, I work with my clients to create manageable lifestyle changes so they are able to achieve their greatest potential in life, health and business.