When it comes to achieving we can be the biggest obstacle in our own way. This is called self-sabotage. Everything in our head, that is holding us back from reaching our goals (like negative emotions, behaviours, actions or lack of actions) is considered self-sabotage. We have collected the most common and impactful ways we stop ourselves from achieving. For each of them, we offer a solution as well, so you’ll know how to fight your deadliest sin.
The Seven Deadly Sins Of Self-Sabotage
- Procrastination. We all procrastinate. Some of us more, some of us less and we do it for a number of reasons. It is a habit that stops us even before we start. How can you ever succeed if you never even start? In our article I’m beating procrastination and here’s how we offer a simple solution to this Not-today attitude.
- Limiting beliefs, limiting self-talk. We all know the little voice in our heads that sometimes says “This won’t work” or “You’re not good at this”. To make things worse we often say them out loud. Negative ideas like this can emerge anytime and they have only one purpose: to stop you. The reason why are they so effective at stopping us, is that we treat them as facts, although they are just mere opinions. This difference is critical. Earlier this year we did an article on understanding and crushing limiting beliefs.
- Fear. One of the oldest feelings that goes back to the primal times. Nowadays we don’t fear sabre tooth tigers anymore, but challenge, failure, disappointment and change instead. Negative experiences can lead to the development of these emotions as they try to protect us from similar situations in the future. If you fear failure you may avoid every opportunity that has even the slightest chance of not succeeding. We discuss fear of failure and challenge in our articles.
- Perfectionism. The inability to accept your work imperfect will often leave you with missed deadlines and sleepless nights as you invest much more effort than the task actually requires. Imagine a runner who never finished a race in his life. Every time, he stops before the finish line to complain about his performance as he walks back to the start. To deal with perfectionism I recommend Sean McCabe’s solution, who is a perfectionist himself. He says start accepting your work at only 90%. A book 90% done is much more valuable than a book that will never be read due to never ending polishing.
- The Inability to plan. The difference between a goal and a dream is design. A goal has a written plan behind it that you can follow, while a dream is immaterial. You can not make progress without knowing what steps come next, what milestones are ahead and what subgoals you need to achieve. These are all essential details of a plan. You can read about the building blocks of a plan and I highly recommend to do a weekly review of your progress as well.
- Overthinking. During the planning phase, we often get stuck while trying to figure out every little detail, possibility or outcome. This is referred to as analysis paralysis and usually, leads to being eternally stuck in a motionless circle of hell. Accept the fact that you could never be prepared for every situation and you only have to deal with bumps on the road when you meet them. Remember, doing is the most important step you’ll ever do.
- The inability to finish. How many half done projects did you abandon in your life? Now imagine that you’ll probably never get a return of equal or greater value on all the energy and time invested. Many of us would consider this a waste. For me, this was the number one way to sabotage myself in the past. I had running projects and hobbies but I abandoned them when I was 50-60% done to started new ones. Some refer to this as shiny object syndrome. Think about all the effort invested and all the opportunities that your current project has before abandoning it.
What is your deadly self-sabotage sin? How did you try to overcome it before? If you haven’t dealt with it why? Let us know in the comments. Also, please share this article with your friends so they can identify and fight their demons as well!
About the authorGabor Hosszu is the founder and head article writer of Goals Infinite. Being passionate about personal development and helping others were the main reasons he launched this site. By trade Gabor is a mechanical engineer. His hobbies include being a chilli farmer, a video game nerd and a wannabe beer expert.