What are the Most Common Examples of Self-Sabotage?

Unconscious self-sabotage occurs when a personal goal or value has been undermined without being initially recognized. People can stand in their own way for a variety of reasons, such as postponement, perfectionism, relationships, work, finances, time, and change. For instance, a perfectionist who wants to complete a task perfectly may rule out incremental improvements, when making even a little progress would actually help achieve their goal. The Procrastinator, The Overthinker, and The Assumer all create self-fulfilling prophecies that can lead to believing something that may not be true.

For example, if you're an assumption, you might think “I'm not going to have fun at that party, so I shouldn't go.” The best way to break this pattern is to respond with something called Opposite Action. This is the idea of answering the exact opposite of what your self-sabotage tells you to do. If your self-sabotage says you work better under pressure and should postpone things, choose to do it now instead of postponing it. If your self-sabotage tells you that someone probably doesn't like you, so you shouldn't call, do the exact opposite and call them.

The idea here is to give yourself more data and evidence to show where your self-sabotage is misleading you and create new perspectives. People who self-sabotage can be aware of their actions. For example, a person who is overweight and on a diet could knowingly sabotage their good efforts by eating an entire box of ice cream. So when you realize that you may be self-sabotaging and want to change your behavior, don't start self-sabotaging again in a different way without even realizing it.

Here are some of the most common examples of self-sabotage: procrastination, perfectionism, relationships, work, finances, time management and change. If your alternative behavior to stress eating after work is eating a small healthy snack instead of eating junk food, what could stand in the way of that new behavior? A vision board appeals to the right side of the brain that is most connected to your artistic and less rational side. Using images, sounds, scents, tactile material etc., can help you communicate with your amygdala-driven being. Self-sabotage in the form of procrastination is emotional in nature as confirmed by recent research.

Self-sabotage undermines your success despite your own desires, dreams or values.