Self Sabotaging Behavior Will Cause You to Turn Your Back on Yourself

Tina Butt

Have you ever met someone that no matter what you say, they have an answer? That same person will argue with you about any topic that is brought up? And, that same person has every excuse in the book for why he/she has not done something he/she promised him/herself.

There are certain behaviors a person will exhibit for Self Sabotaging him/herself. Here are some things to watch for in yourself, your clients, your patients, your family and your friends.

Self Criticism: Some people will listen to the voice in their head that make them doubt themselves. They will think “I am not good enough”. With this thinking, a person will not be able to believe in themselves and will lose their self-worth. An example of this: my daughter has a friend that constantly says she is “not pretty enough, I can’t do that, my hair is ugly, I’ve never been able to do that.” My daughter came to me and asked if she had to be friends with that girl “she is so negative”.

The take home: If you don’t love yourself and lack confidence in yourself, how do you expect others to love you and feel confident in you?

Negativity: People will have a negative thought about everything in the world. They won’t see the blue sky, they see grey. They will comment with a negative response and not see the positive aspects of a conversation or idea.

The take home: If you cannot share positive remarks or thoughts with others, you will find yourself to be alone and without others to spend time with. How boring will life be if all that is seen is Grey skies?

Procrastination: People will put everything off. They wait until the last minute. The reason behind this behavior, they are putting off something or avoiding it all together. They think the activity will “just go away” if they wait long enough. “I will do it tomorrow”.

The take home: There is no growth. People that procrastinate, lose friends, jobs, money and other necessities in life. They let opportunities pass them by while they wait for tomorrow. Tomorrow may not come, we have to live for today.

Disorganization: Someone that is a self-sabotager will be unable to organize their thoughts and their lives. Organization takes time, effort and patience. These people will lose track of events, bills, dates etc.

The take home: When a person is always late or forgetting a promise, they will quickly lose friends and family. They will lose jobs. These people are difficult to be with and they are not dependable.

Overindulgence: People that self sabotage will overeat, over spend, gamble more, have increased risk of alcoholism and drug use/abuse. There is an excess of these behaviors to try to “numb” feelings and avoid something that may be unpleasant to deal with. They do not want to “feel”, so they finds behaviors that take the “feelings” away.

The take home: The effects of overindulging is temporary! Once the activity or substance wears off, the same feelings are there. Over time, this poor coping mechanism will cause detrimental effects on ones health and mind. Do you know a drug addict? They use drugs to numb a specific memory/feeling, over time, they need the drug to numb the feeling that arises from them using the drugs. It’s a vicious cycle.

Initiating conflict: This person is argumentative. They have learned behaviors that do not allow them to have an open honest conversation with someone for fear of rejection, so they initiate the negative behavior before someone else can.

The take home: It is important to be able to tell someone your thoughts and feelings. When you become argumentative with someone, people will not want to be around you. People will always worry “he/she is gonna fly off the handle”. This will cause others to not be honest with you. Your relationships will be based on lies to save the sake of an argument.

Comparison: People compare themselves to others. They cannot accept themselves for who they are. “I hate my hair. I hate my boobs. I hate my butt. I hate that I am fat. I hate myself”. They look at others achievements and wonder why they don’t have the same things.

The take home: We are all unique. Love what you have. If YOU don’t like what you have then and only then, work to improve it. But, don’t do it for someone else or because you think someone else will like you better. I have had friends over the years that compare my accomplishments to their current life. This is not fair! We all have different desires, needs and wants. What I have or have achieved meets my life goals, not theirs. This causes me to not want to be friends with those people. It has been said, you should hang around people that have the same or similar goals as you, this way there should not be negative judging, there are similar things to talk about and work on together.

These behaviors are destructive to yourself. You make is difficult for yourself to achieve a happy life. We all have a purpose in life, don’t fight it. These feelings are usually learned behaviors and are coming from the subconscious mind interfering with our more rational conscious mind. Self-sabotage is allowing the subconscious mind to hold you back in life pleasures. There are many ways as I listed above, that you can self-sabotage yourself such as overeating due to stress or emotions that you are not connecting with; procrastinating for a deadline due to lack of motivation; drinking alcohol to run from life problems/stressors.

So, how do you overcome self sabotage? Practicing self care and mindful behavior!!

Instead of saying “I don’t deserve this” say to yourself “I deserve this”. You deserve to be happy. Allowing yourself to feel happy, to get what makes you happy will boost your self esteem. Buy that pretty dress you have been eyeing. Put it on and swirl around!! Don’t you feel beautiful. ENJOY it!

Instead of saying “I can’t do this” say to yourself “I can do this”. Step back and figure out a better way to accomplish the task at hand.

Instead of saying “It was my fault” say to yourself “This will be OK”. Negative blaming creates an easy way out. You are telling yourself you failed whether you did or not. If something did not turn out the way you think it should have, how can you make it OK? The more negative thoughts you have about yourself, your subconscious brain will start to believe you are what you think.

Journaling helps you to recognize these behaviors by writing what you feel, hear and see. When you observe the feelings your are having, write them down and ask yourself if your current coping mechanisms are helping or harming you. Get in touch with the emotions you are experiencing, what is the root cause of them? Search for a solution to prevent these negative behaviors in the future.

You have to want to help yourself overcome the self sabotaging behaviors. You have to put effort into stopping the negative thoughts , stop the negative coping mechanisms and turn them into healthier choices. Be able to forgive yourself and others that may have taught you these negative coping skills. Move past the negative thoughts and find positive, happy and healthy choices, then you will find happiness.

Do you want to find happiness? Do you want to feel healthy? Do you want to achieve goals that you have set? This takes work and determination and repetitive positive actions. You’ve got this! Now go get it.


Tina Butt, Health and Wellness Coach and Healthcare Advocate

Owner, Qualified Wellness Solutions, LLC

Contact me to discuss ways that we can work together so you can reach those wellness goals you are struggling with