Are you guilty of serial self sabotage?
You decide to do something, something fabulous, and then talk yourself out of it. Or, maybe you’ve tried sticking to a plan and fall off the wagon after a couple of days. Excuse after excuse and you don’t follow through.
Is this your repeating pattern?
First comes an idea, or a commitment
When I decided to regularly share consistent habit tips and action steps with you, I was inspired and excited. I pressed publish on the newsletter and my brave commitment whooshed out into the world. Never to be retrieved.
Then, hello excuses!
What was I thinking, making such a commitment! My brain started coming up with all sorts of excuses to get out of it. I got anxious – what if I couldn’t deliver?
But, here I am.
Sharing with you how I struggled with exactly what I want to help you overcome.
Everyone struggles with self sabotage
You see, my brain has the same self sabotaging tricks as everyone else. So, don’t feel alone. It’s how you push through the tricks that makes the difference.
Where do the self sabotaging thoughts come from?
There’s a section in the middle of your brain called the limbic system. In human evolution, it’s the part of your brain that’s been around the longest and is responsible for basic survival. You may have heard it called “lizard brain”, “reptilian brain” or “caveman brain”.
It’s your inbuilt safety mechanism. It also controls tselfhings like breathing, heart rate, temperature and your fight/flight response when it thinks you need saving.
It works hard at keeping you safe. That’s why it tries to sabotage you every step of the way when it comes to changing behaviours.
If you’ve struggled with not following through with a plan or a habit, if self sabotage is your default, I want you to know that it’s not a character flaw or a weakness. It’s how we’re all wired because our brain is not wired for change. It’s wired to keep you in your comfort zone.
In Steven Pressfield’s book, The War of Art, he came up with the concept of Resistance “a universal force that has one sole mission: to keep things as they are.”
So, I refer to my limbic brain as “Resistance”. And, let me tell you, my Resistance has a very persistent voice.
Resistance is at work when you want to do things like:
- get healthier, but never follow through
- master a new skill, but never sign up for the class
- start a new project, but never make a plan
- join the gym, and only go once
Your resistant voice is not saying encouraging things like “you can do this”. It’s telling you things like – it’s too hard, too complicated, not going to work, you failed before, you need more research, no-one will read it, you deserve this treat, you’re too busy, it doesn’t feel right, I’ll have just one, I don’t have time.
How to push through resistance
- Become aware of it. It’s a sneak and hides behind the scenes ready to say anything to keep you locked into repeating the same pattern. When you notice resistance at work, shine a light on it. The moment you do that, it’s power will weaken.
- Listen to its excuses and arguments. Then choose to take that step anyway.
- Invite it along. Your limbic brain isn’t going anywhere so you may as well let it go along for the ride. But, that doesn’t mean it gets to drive. You’re in control.
- Give your resistance its own name if you want. Something humorous works well.
I usually have a conversation with Resistance that goes something like this “I hear you Resistance and thank you for trying to keep me safe. But I’ve got this. It’s going to be OK”.
BITE SIZED ACTION
Write down all the self sabotaging excuses your resistant limbic brain comes up with each time you want to change a habit or implement your idea.
Next time you wobble with following through, have a conversation with your resistance and do it anyway.
I can help you create consistent habits. Here’s how:
- Book in for a consultation (in Clinic, Zoom or over the phone) to get personalised coaching on changing any habit – Click here
- Creating habits around eating the right foods for your body is a great place to start – Click here
- Grab a copy of my Rebuild Your Life Journal for 5 simple daily journal prompts to ground you and get those habits and routines consistently set – it’s your daily reset button – Click here
- Not sure what you need? Book in for a 20 minute FREE discovery call chat with me – Click here
- Sign up for my Newsletter for more consistent habit tips – Click here
With your consistent habits in mind,