“Whether you think you can or you think you can’t, you’re right”
– Henry Ford
The expression “you are your own worst enemy” is a popular and common phrase for many people. This typically shows up as self-defeating and sabotaging thoughts that hinder both your happiness and progress.
What’s worse is that you usually don’t recognize that it’s even happening. Instead, we attribute our lack of success to some type of inadequacy. This, in turn, strengthens the negative messages we tell ourselves on a daily basis and as a result get caught in a self-sabotaging cycle that can be very difficult to break. It begins with knowing what to look for so you can begin to break the cycle.
Here are 9 of the most common ways you self-sabotage your own happiness:
- You constantly look to others for approval and answers.
From the moment we are born – we are told what do to, what are right vs. wrong, what success looks like and the list goes on. It’s okay to seek answers in certain situations but as whole, honoring your own beliefs and thinking for yourself is an important skill and muscle to grow. When you stop doing what everybody else wants you to do and start following your own intuition, you will find exactly what you are looking for. “Be yourself, everyone else is already taken”
- You allow toxic people into your life.
Although it’s normal to feel guilty about removing toxic people from your life, that doesn’t mean it’s not necessary from time to time. Don’t make room for people who cause you pain, belittle your ideas or make you feel small. If someone shows in their actions they are willing to change, then consider keeping them around but if they continue to show a disregard for your feelings then it may be time to go.
“Letting toxic people go is not an act of cruelty but rather self-care”
- You are a magnet for drama.
How would your life be different if you walked away from drama, gossip and verbal defamation? Let today be the day you speak only about the good you know of other people and encourage others to do the same. Those that refuse to support you CAN be ignored by you. It’s as simple as that. Incredible things happen when you distance yourself from negativity and those who create it. Don’t get caught up in drama. Just walk on by. “Some people create their own storms and then get upset when it rains”
- You believe everyone is out to get you.
Your brain is hardwired to collect information, data and evidence. Evidence for whatever and wherever your thoughts, beliefs and ideas take you. If you look hard enough, you will undoubtedly find something to fit the bill, especially when it comes to interpersonal situations with other people. It begins with taking this personally and then assigning negative intent to the unintentional actions of others. “Make sure your worst enemy is not living between your own two ears”
- You compare your behind the scenes life to other peoples highlight reels.
There will always be someone smarter, taller, prettier and more successful than you…but so what. Instead of competing against the ideas of what others may or may not have, focus on improving yesterday’s versions of yourself. “If you compete with everyone else, you will become bitter. If you compete with a previous version of yourself, you will become better”
- You can’t keep focused on the present.
If you find that your mind is racing a mile a minute and dwelling on the past, then chances are you are in not the present moment. You can’t change yesterday so stop trying, but you can ruin today by worrying about tomorrow. Be present. Tomorrow will reveal itself exactly as it should, just as yesterday already has – that’s how it supposed to be.
“Today is a gift, that’s why they call it the present”
- You can’t let get of your past mistakes.
Learn from our past mistakes is critical to overall growth and moving forward. However, the pathway for success lies solely in forgiving yourself along the way. It’s not a “free pass” but rather seek out the learning with every obstacle you encounter. Sometimes the greatest thing to come out of all your hard work isn’t what you get for it, but what you learn from it.“Don’t let your past dictate who you are, but let it be a lesson that strengthens the person you’ll become”
- You see every situation as a glass half full.
Ninety nine percent of the bad stuff we think of never happens yet our minds love to wander off there. Knowing that the world is not all gloom and doom leave you with a choice. You can either see the world through a lens of doubt and despair or hope and excitement – It’s up to you. “The only thing we have to fear is fear itself”
- You suffer from analysis paralysis.
We most often regret the chances we didn’t take in life. Waiting for the ducks to line up can sometimes take a lifetime if at all. Sometimes taking a leap is better than no decisions at all. Indecisiveness just delays the inevitable, while taking a chance can teach you how to make better decisions and grow your confidence.“Worrying about how things might go wrong, doesn’t help things to go right”
- You constantly look to others for approval and answers.
People aren’t always aware of their own self-sabotaging behavior as the effects of their behavior may not show up for some time or until it creates problems or interferes with their goals. Unfortunately, connecting a behavior to self-defeating consequences is no guarantee that a person will disengage from the behavior. Still, it is possible to overcome almost any form of self-sabotage, and people do it every day. If you are interested in learning more on how to break the self-sabotage cycle, here is an excellent article to get you back on track.
The floor is yours:
What’s your secret to living
a happy life?
Please leave your comment below as your insights are greatly appreciated and a learning opportunity for everyone reading this article.
Please click ‘Follow’ if you would like to hear more from me in the future.