Overcoming Self-Sabotage

Do you feel that you cannot have what you want to have no matter how hard you try? Are you thinking of pursuing a dream that you have always wanted but feel like holding back? It is probably not because you lack the desire, skills, knowledge, or even the effort, but rather because something stronger is sabotaging you: Yourself.

Some people experience this "internal tug-of-war" between having a desire to do something yet feeling like they cannot or should not do it. This experience is called "self-sabotage," an irrational or illogical behavior which can destroy your motivation to do the things you really want.

You want to look for a job that you have always wanted but do not want to muster all the energy to rewrite your resume. You want to lose weight, but cannot seem to stop yourself from overeating. Not only it hinders you from getting what you want, self-sabotage behavior can leave you frustrated, discouraged, and trapped in a situation you desperately want to change. This will make you end up not being able to live a successful and happy life that you really want to live.

There are different techniques that people do when they are sabotaging themselves. Check if any of these apply to you so can start changing your life for the better.

Type A behavior

You typically rush frantically and treat people with hostility among other things. This is because you are probably bringing unnecessary emotional stress to relationships with aggressiveness.

Negative self-talk

You feel like there is an enemy inside your head, especially how you "talk" to yourself. This is generally formed during childhood, and it can either be used to ensue positive or negative behavior. In this case, negative self-talk may attribute to malevolent intent to others when none ever existed, interpret potentially-positive events as negative, or create a self-fulfilling prophecy by believing that their stress level is more than they can handle.

Poor conflict resolution skills

You act aggressively with people when simple assertiveness will do; or you passively let others walk all over you because you do not know how to say no.


You see things as worse than they really are. You may also pass up opportunities to make yourself better, overlook solutions to problems, and cause yourself mental stress in many others ways. Seeing the glass half-empty undermines your belief in yourself, bringing poor health outcomes, fewer positive life events, and more negative consequences.

Chronic stress

You feel overscheduled and overstressed, either because you are a Type A person or because you do not know how to say no when others demand on your time. Eventually, you habitually take on more than you can handle.