You ever see something that is such a small read, but yet it somehow manages to live rent free in your head for a bit? It’s happened to me more than I care to mention over the last few months given that everything has been shut down and my screen time is now through the roof (shout out to Apple reminders.) A few weeks ago my mindless scrolling led me to a post about self-sabotage and I figured you guys would enjoy taking this little journey with me. You’re welcome.
Here is the hot list of things we do to self sabotage. If you see yourself, just embrace it so we can move on more quickly:
- Rejecting Praise and Compliments
- Not Asking for Help
- Pushing People Away When They Start to Get Close
- Opening Up and Attaching to Others Prematurely
- Refusing to Do Something Unless You Can Do it Perfectly
- Procrastinating on Important Projects
- Putting Everyone Else’s Needs Before Your Own
- Constantly Criticizing Yourself
- Isolating When You Are Hurting
If I’m perfectly honest I can clearly recall doing some version of all nine of these which is probably why I keep returning to this post even though it’s almost a month old at this point. However, I’m aware that two of these things come back to bite me in the butt often so it would be kind of lacking in self awareness for me to expound on the others without addressing my own issues. So, My personal poisons are number three and four: Pushing People Away When They Start to Get Close, and Opening Up and Attaching to Others Prematurely
I’m extremely self-reliant. I can and will do any and everything myself given the opportunity (you can see the other issues looming I’m sure .) This makes it extremely difficult for me to take negative feedback on anything I deem “personal.” It’s not that I believe I am perfect, it’s just that a critique of anything I put my heart into can feel like an attack and at times like a rejection. So I created the bad habit of keeping all people at arm’s length during most of my personal processes.
Now, there is a lot of value in being self assured, but it can get lonely and creatively stunting if you are constantly keeping to yourself in order to avoid hearing you’re wrong, or being rejected. I had to come to the realization that if you’re not uncomfortable, you’re not growing. I realized I would never make myself uncomfortable to the point of positive change. You need outside stimuli for that. Humans by nature are selfish and will self soothe as much as possible if they have never learned to get dirty and open themselves up to proper feedback. Even if you’re constantly criticizing yourself I have news for you. That’s your way of saying “It’s okay I don’t have to try.” I know a plethora of things keep people from being able to let others in, but I have found once you let the right folks in life becomes way more for lack of a better word successful.
Now how does one who doesn’t let anyone in attach too quickly? Glad you asked. Let’s roll that beautiful footage.
Remember when I said I’m self reliant? Guess what that also extends to? My personal relationships. That’s right. I don’t need the other person to be present for our relationship! I can do it ALL by myself. This leads to me ignoring clear red flags as well as ignoring the needs of everyone involved because I’ve decided what should be happening, not paying attention to what is happening. This does two things. It repels the other person because who likes to feel, well, trapped and it also keeps me from making them accountable for their bad behavior. That’s what ignoring red flags is. Telling the other person it’s okay to take a dump all over you because you won’t leave.
Again I feel this is tied to my fear of failure and rejection but also some self esteem issues that I have never quite gotten over. But I promise you nothing is worse for your self esteem than dealing with a jackass long term because they are “the one.” My current fix for this is promising myself to set boundaries very early. I have grown comfortableish with drawing a line and insisting the other person does not cross until I’m ready. I also have learned to slow down. I’m not giving things away any more. It must be earned. I deserve that.
Well, ya’ll I’m not going to lie. This post kicked my butt. Self reflection on this level actually aggravates me to no end, but again it’s important to understand your bad cycles so you can break them. Better the self reflection than the self damage. So what’s your number? Let’s talk about it.