The Internal Saboteur – We Choose Not To Succeed
No matter what self help books you read, success can only happen if you have the cooperation of one person: yourself.
It often comes down to one thing: You don’t really want to succeed, and you inadvertently sabotage your own efforts. Liking yourself and who you are is critical to achieving your life goals.
You may complain about corporate indifference to being taken advantage of. You may be born into the poorest circumstances. The excuses are wide ranging about lack of success. Some people try very hard and spend a large amount of money to improve themselves or learn but never can pull themselves out of their rut. This is money and time wasted until you actually look at yourself and give yourself the permission to succeed.
It doesn’t matter what it is you’re trying to do. Until you allow yourself to do it, you won’t.
Take a look at this scenario:
Someone desperately struggling comes to you and ask for help. They say “I really want to change my life and move to the next level but I don’t know how, could you help me?”. Would you ever say no? Not many people would. In fact, everyone has access to a tremendous amount of help from government resources to private acts of kindness. Whether or not this person would succeed is dependent on if he/she grab the helping hand and push themselves up.
What would make them let go of the helping hand? We let go when we hate ourselves. We just want to slip back into a pit of self pity so that negative image we have of ourselves can come true.
We carry on destructive internal dialogues that poison our viewpoints and shift our behavior towards sabotage:
- I don’t deserve it
- I’m a bad person
- I’m not good enough
- People don’t like me
- I can’t succeed
All those insidious whispers stem from one thing: We dislike ourselves and we’ll punish ourselves for that dislike by sabotaging our efforts.
Even if we think we’re confident, comments like those will always occur in our heads. I hear them all the time because I watch out for them.
We’ll make all the wrong decisions. We’ll blindly follow other people. We’ll look for shortcuts to avoid looking at the truth. We’ll ignore the things we need to do. We won’t change our lives. We won’t live our dreams.
The first step to changing our lives into what we want is to look honestly at who is holding us back. Is it someone else? or is it really us?
* Are you doing things that doesn’t make sense and you can’t explain even to yourself?
* Are you spending money that you don’t have?
* Do you buy things because it’s what other people are doing?
* Are you complaining all the time but never actually do anything?
* Do you say one thing or want to do something but act in another way?
* Are you following the crowd?
* Do you feel discriminated against? Is it real or in your mind?
* Do you have a chip on your shoulder?
* Do you hate the world?
These are signposts about our conflicting feelings.
If we’re truly honest, for most of us–including successful people–we are our own worst enemy. Everyone has self doubts and fears. It’s natural to go through phases like that. The trick is not to hurt ourselves while we’re down. We need to recognize the warning signs and work to block those natural little sabotages until we like ourselves again.
Some people may never have liked themselves for their entire lives.
The self loathing is unreasonable and not necessarily based on facts. It’s complicated and are tangled with many emotions that I’m not sure any of us could ever figure out even if we spend years in psychotherapy.
I have spent two years knowing that I need to lose weight for my health, yet I have not taken any solid action about it. I want to change, but I don’t. I know that losing weight will positively affect my health, improve my financial situation, and protect my self esteem. However, I do nothing substantial, both unconsciously and consciously, because I don’t want to. Will I eventually take action and change? Yes, because I do like myself and value me but it may be months or years. I have to commit and not just to want.
What is important is recognizing that I have an issue, just like an alcoholic. It will take time for me to work through the self punishment that I’ve chosen to inflict on myself. I have to find the cause and root for this sabotage. When I figure it out, I will be able to face the fears and move on.
Once we recognize the enemy, we can then move onto the next step, building the defenses by learning who we are and then to liking ourselves.
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