“If it is important to you, you will find a way. If not, you’ll find an excuse.” ~ Anon.
Often you may feel like you’re doing all the right things: you’ve adopted a success mindset, you’ve identified your vision statements, you know your triggers and your preferences, and yet you still aren’t getting where you really want to be. It’s frustrating but there is one more thing you need to explore and that is your preferred method of self-sabotage.
Sabotage is where most of us get stuck. It is the gap between intention and action. For example, most of us make New Year’s resolutions with every intention of keeping them. But less than 78% of us actually follow through with the action necessary to realize our intention. The gap is the “why” we don’t do the things we know we should.
In order to figure out your preferred methods of sabotage you need to take a good, hard look at your past. Analyze what kept you from reaching your goals. More than likely you’ll begin to see a pattern. For many women their preferred methods of sabotage fall into one of the following categories.
This usually is the result of experiences we’ve had in the past that we project onto the future. Maybe we made a bad decision is a certain situation so now we avoid similar situations. Or it can manifest itself when we compare ourselves to others. A state of envy or excuse making – is just your ego trying to protect you from the truth about yourself. Our only comparison should be to the goals that we set for ourselves.
It is time to start believing in yourself and being confident no matter where you are. Celebrate your intentions and accept that you are a unique masterpiece. Make a commitment to building more confidence by learning more and doing things you have not done before. Will you be successful every time? Probably not – but confident people know they grow by failure as much as they grow by success.
These two little demons raise their ugly heads when we are too attached to a particular outcome of a situation. When it doesn’t work out or our preferences aren’t met you might get angry because you feel you didn’t get back the same care and attention that you gave. It’s important not to measure reciprocity one on one. Our ego’s most basic reaction is to project blame even when we are partially responsible for what happened. If you find yourself believing things are 100% someone else’s fault or that it is the end of the world, it is time to take a step back. The simple truth is human beings make mistakes.
You may get angry or place blame because you feel you deserve success because you’re a good person or you’ve worked hard or you’re better than someone else who already has the success you feel belongs to you. None of us are automatically entitled to anything and it’s harmful for us to believe that we are. Rather, come from a place of desiring. If you simply desire rather than believe that you deserve you can keep the blame and anger triggers from wrapping you up and preventing you from doing the things you know you should be doing.
Excuses are a mechanism we use to ensure that people will still like us, even though we often have deliberately made a choice not to follow through on a personal commitment. Sometimes the very person we are trying to convince to still like us, is us. It is super easy to make excuses if we lack the discipline needed to do things even when we don’t feel like it.
Here’s the funny thing about procrastinators – they’re usually the ones who make “to do” lists and then don’t do any of it. Then they beat themselves up for not doing it. Procrastinators spend too much time making lists and avoid taking action when they should be taking action.
One of the methods I teach women is to become aware of your excuse making/procrastination voice. For example, maybe one of your goals is to go to the gym on Tuesdays. Tuesday rolls around and you begin to feel like maybe you won’t go. You say in your head, “Oh well, I can go tomorrow and double the amount of time.”
You must recognize this is your excuse making voice and is not who you really are. This is not the person who set your goals – it’s the voice who’s just making excuses. Check the excuses you make against the goals you created and you will find major common ones you probably use daily.
Fear is False Evidence Appearing Real. The only way to get past fear is to understand where it comes from and be aware of it when it hits you. Most of our fear originates from something that happened in our past or something that someone in our life modeled for us. Ask yourself questions: When did you first feel fear? When did you feel rejection? When did you feel I can’t fail because it will be the end of the world if I do? Finding the source of your fear makes it easier to realize how irrational it may be. There is no appropriate fear, once you are an adult, other than when you fear for your life. You have to make a decision to let fear go if you want to find your Big Voice.
These are just a few examples of ways we might sabotage ourselves and not make decisions for ourselves that are in alignment with our vision or goals. I encourage you to use the Sabotage Worksheet to identify these things. Rather than hide from them, keeping them front and center so your Big Voice has the power to override their pull to keep you from living your best life!