Solving People Problems

The Biggest Killer is Self-Sabotage

By Dr. Tyra Oldham

Leader in Human Interface

This is a two-part series on self-sabotage. Self-sabotage the number one killer of ideas, happiness, success, motivation, and even love.  I am aware that in my life, the work of self-sabotage. It has been my good fortune to witness the act of self-sabotage in relationships and business.  The ability to be at the precipice of change and thwart opportunity is not unique to most of us. We can spend our lives telling ourselves what we believe and allowing others to tell us what we are not. As we live, each of us is in the form of development, constantly changing, continually growing, and learning.  No matter our stage in life or relationships, there are setbacks typically called failures, yet they are perceived as negatives damaging our lives but in reality present as learning opportunities for growth.  There is an opportunity for learning if allowed for every obstacle, but the whispers of fear and failure introduce sabotage. The ability to overcome self-sabotage is invaluable for an extraordinary and developmental life. The work is to be aware before the sabotage begins.

Self-sabotage occurs when trying to end or speed up an inevitable event or problem without facts. Emotion drives self-sabotage that is not factual or in evidence. The person believes that if they strike first, the pain will be less, but in reality, the pain is still present, and possibly the act of sabotage has created regret in the process. The ability to quickly respond in haste to disrupt a future action can end in the disappointment predicted.

The chance to explore the impact of self-sabotage is essential. I wanted to share why I believe it is the number one killer of ideas and dreams and often passion and love. First, self-sabotage must be defined. Self-sabotage is when we come close to our desires and then find a way to change the outcome by running away, allowing fear to inform our decisions. Those negative words creep in and provide a context for making bad decisions because the work of sabotage appears to be the fastest or most straightforward way to control an outcome. Further, sabotage occurs when telling ourselves that we are not worthy of the thing or person we desire. This self-talk affects our psyche and declines and defines our success.

For many, we attribute self-sabotage to women. The view that women are emotive is biased and distorts the ability to stop the sabotage. When you believe or place value in that your feelings are impenetrable is harmful to understanding how to cope with issues day-to-day.  No matter gender or sex as human emotions exists within us. The choice is how we manage and express those emotions. But self-sabotage is universal; it is not gender-related; it doesn’t discriminate by age, race, or culture. Self-sabotage speaks one language that of negativity and fear.  The acceptance of anxiety as a guide is built on unstable ground, informing us of limitations.  An optimist will tell you that anything is possible and that confronting situations in time with focus, precision, and practice creates possibility. A saboteur will say to you that many of life’s challenges are difficult to resolve, and while what has happened in the past is over it will undoubtedly impact the future. They may also say what has past, is hard to overcome.  No matter your views, self-sabotage can creep into our thinking and damage relationships, images of self and worth, and drive outcomes.

Yes, the number one killer of hopes, dreams, ideas, love, and future thinking sabotages oneself. Even as I say this or speak it into being, it seems ridiculous, even sad, that we would sabotage ourselves. The language of sabotage affects the potential that human beings offer to the world; these words impact what we’re able to see and hear. Self-sabotage happens because we learn as children and from our peers, family, and friends that things are impossible and that hurdles are challenging, so it easier to stop before you start.  Frequently, religion speaks to this oppression of self and the weight of life and death as we move toward God in our lives. Self-sabotage whispers negative thoughts as to what God wants for us.  If we believe in the power of spirit, then God’s nature only seeks to give us hope and great things in life that are a part of faith and prayer. The desires and goals we pray or wish for do not always align with the outcome.  The state of one’s life may shift to negative thinking that promotes sabotage.  During a sabotage event, if the person can step back, every opportunity is another door open. Taking on another viewpoint during a challenging time can reduce and stop self-sabotage; the reality is no one has it all.  Next is to look at how to overcome self-sabotage.

Part Two will follow.


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