Do you sometimes find that you sabotage yourself in your work or your relationships? Have you wondered why you would do that?
One of the things that may help you understand your self-sabotaging behavior is to recognize that you are actually trying to protect yourself rather than sabotage yourself.
We all have a survival part that is programmed into us -- which I call our ego-wounded self. It gets activated by fear and goes into action to try to protect us from getting hurt. This stress response is very helpful, if you are being physically threatened and need to fight or flee.
However, many of us have been programmed to go into the stress response when we fear getting emotionally hurt, as opposed to being threatened with physical harm. You might be operating from a false belief that says, "I can't handle emotional pain," so you might find yourself fleeing a work or relationship situation, or engaging in some other self-protective/self-sabotaging behavior, as if there is a real physical threat, when in reality the threat is coming from your false beliefs.
Why Do You Self-Sabotage?
Below are some of the beliefs that might trigger your fears or your resistance to taking loving action in your own behalf:
- I'm not lovable. No one can love me.
For many people, the fear of rejection and the fear of engulfment keep them out of relationships.
- If I fail, it means I'm inadequate and stupid, and everyone will know that I'm not as smart as they think I am.
Your fears are keeping you from taking loving action in your own behalf, but these fears are based on false beliefs, such as:
- Success or failure defines my worth as a person.
These are just a few of the false beliefs that may be keeping you stuck. You might want to go inside and see what other beliefs trigger your fears.
How Do You Self-Sabotage?
- I keep myself isolated.
- I keep putting off looking for the kind of job I want.
Healing Your Self-Sabotaging Behavior
Here are a few actions you can take that can get you unstuck:
- Notice self-judgments. It is likely that your self-judgments are a major reason you are stuck. Self-judgment is a major form of self-sabotage. When you notice yourself judging yourself, ask your higher self for the truth.
By doing the above inner work, you can move out of your self-sabotaging behavior and into satisfying work and a loving relationship.
Margaret Paul, Ph.D. is a relationship expert, best-selling author, and co-creator of the powerful Inner Bonding® self-healing process, recommended by actress Lindsay Wagner and singer Alanis Morissette, and featured on Oprah. To begin learning how to love and connect with yourself so that you can connect with others, take advantage of our free Inner Bonding eCourse, receive Free Help, and take our 12-Week eCourse, "The Intimate Relationship Toolbox" - the first two weeks are free! Discover SelfQuest®, a transformational self-healing/conflict resolution computer program. Phone or Skype sessions with Dr. Margaret Paul.
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