Have you ever found yourself making progress towards a goal, only to suddenly veer off course, sabotaging your efforts? Self-sabotage behavior can be a perplexing and frustrating experience, leaving us puzzled and questioning why we hinder our progress and success. It seems as though an invisible force within us is working against our best intentions, undermining our efforts at every turn. To truly understand and overcome self-sabotage, it is crucial to delve into the intricate dynamics of our internal selves. Furthermore, it’s crucial to uncover the hidden subconscious barriers that impede our path to success.
In this article, we will explore practical strategies and steps to overcome self-sabotage behavior. By uncovering the oppositional forces within us, getting to know their hidden benefits, and meeting their needs, we can break free from self-sabotage and create alignment and harmony within ourselves. It’s time to embark on a transformative journey to overcome the hidden subconscious barriers that have held us back and embrace a future of fulfillment, success, and personal empowerment.
Understanding internal fragments
To understand self-sabotage better, it is important to first understand that you are a fragmented being. Like all people, you have different parts of your personality. They are often referred to as inner team members, internal aspects, or shadow and light aspects. Now these different aspects have different needs, wishes, motives, values, and goals. They come forward in different situations or stay buried deep in your subconscious but still influence. For example, there may be an aspect of your personality that is very successful and goal-oriented and that values hard work. On the other hand, there may be an aspect that is very laid-back and wants to do the work with the least amount of effort.
With these two it’s easy to see that they are in opposition to each other. The problem begins when you set a new business goal that requires a lot of effort and time. The aspect of you that is goal and success-oriented will be happy but the other one will likely engage in self-sabotage behavior because it doesn’t want to do the work. This understanding brings us to the real reason people self-sabotage.
Self-Sabotage behavior: it’s not what you think it is
It’s tempting to think that there is this one enemy within that is sabotaging all your best efforts and all you need to do is control this one enemy. But the reality of self-sabotage is that there is not one enemy that is engaging in self-sabotage behavior but rather internal personality aspects that are in opposition to the goal. And what seems like self-sabotaging behaviors are just the aspects of your personality doing the best they can to preserve and meet their needs.
For that reason, self-sabotage does not exist. There is just a misalignment and oppositional forces within that make it impossible to reach a goal. All other internal roadblocks such as fear of change, the comfort zone, or resistance stemming from these aspects.
Knowing this makes the solution less about time management and discipline but rather more about self-discovery and starting an internal conversation with the aspects that are in opposition.
1. Stop self-sabotage behavior: find the oppositional forces within
The first step to stop self-sabotage behavior is to find that oppositional force within. Discovering what aspect or aspects of your personality are putting all their energy into preserving the status quo provides the foundation for the next steps.
To do this, imagine you are sitting at a giant table with beautiful scenery. On this table, all aspects of you are coming together. In your mind state your goal and ask who is supporting your goal and who is against it. Look at these aspects and give them names. The names can be real names or descriptive names such as “the lazy”, “the skeptical” or “the fearful”.
2. Uncover the hidden benefit
As stated previously, all aspects are acting in their best interest. Knowing that these aspects are not consciously hurting you or sabotaging your goals, is only possible if you get to know them. For that reason, the second step to ending self-sabotage behavior is to get to know these aspects and find out what they are trying to preserve. If you like you can continue asking the questions below in that imaginary visualization. For that imagine an oppositional aspect in front of you or just doing it by writing it down. You can use the questions below or come up with your questions.
- How do you feel about reaching this goal?
- What are you afraid will happen if you reach it?
- What should we do differently to make you happy?
- What do you need?
It’s best to ask these questions with each oppositional aspect.
3. Meet the sabotagers need to break free
Once you discovered what need the oppositional forces within you have, you can go about meeting these needs. You can either meet them internally or externally. Here’s how:
Your internal world is like a universe in itself. Internal aspects are almost like entirely different people which you can create relationships between. To find a resolution and meet the needs of sabotagers, it is possible to internally build relationships between the parts. For example, if an aspect of you sabotages because it fears loneliness and needs safety, you can find an aspect of you that can provide that safety and connect them.
Another way to meet the needs of the oppositional aspects is to find strategies in your life to provide the needs. For example, if you have a lazy aspect that is opposing your desire to work hard and create success therefore seemingly engaging in self-sabotage behavior you can either find very effective ways of doing things or you can dedicate specific times where you fulfill that need and be lazy. What is important here is that you make this transparent. Communicate that there will be a dedicated time for laziness to the aspect.
Doing the above will end the feeling that there is an enemy within that is sabotaging your goals. It will create internal resolution and a big “Yes” for your goals. The path will be clear to dedicate 100% of your energy to your endeavor and self-sabotage behavior will end.