Things are not going well, and you feel it. Getting out of bed feels like a daily punishment. Every task feels monumental, every interaction excruciating. And for some reason someone yelling “MOMMMMM” from across the room makes you want to scream and cry at the exact same time.
You have burned out.
Your mental health is in the toilet and despite any effort you put in to changing things up, it feels like your life is next in line. How did things get so desperate?
The answer: Self-Sabotage
Arriving at this point in your life and health is a clear indication that, on some level you are working against yourself and if you continue things will only get worse. To avoid the agonizing downward spiral of self-sabotage you need to find and fix the behaviours that are eroding your progress. Here are the most common self-sabotaging behaviours:
- Unclear Vision – doing things mindlessly causing you to waste energy on relatively insignificant tasks that do not move you forward.
- No Boundaries – saying yes to everyone and everything out of the fear of creating conflict, missing out, or having to face undesirable consequences or emotions.
- Ignoring Your Capacity – ignoring your own needs; not prioritizing your physical and mental energy resulting in you trying to do more with less.
- Avoidance/Denial – not acknowledging or addressing the things that are really bothering you
- Sabotage-Story Telling – building and believing your own excuses for why things are the way they are.
All of these provide a direct path to burnout, anxiety, and depression. The good news is you can correct them right now. Start thinking about what you need and how you want things to be. Then ask yourself, “What’s getting in the way?” and list the obstacles you feel you face moving forward. When you know what you need to fix, ask yourself, “What can I do about each of these obstacles?”
It is absolutely essential that you do NOT accept “nothing” for an answer. Convincing yourself you are helpless and have absolutely no ways to change your situation is allowing the Sabotage-Story to run (and ruin) your life. It is true some changes may be hard or uncomfortable or require you seek out additional resources but, never ever accept that your situation is hopeless.
Identify the methods you use to self-sabotage and commit to moving yourself forward. With self- sabotage out of the way you will be free to feel and do better.
-Bonnie J. Skinner, MEd, RP, CCC