Learn More

Sweet biscuit sugar plum. Halvah chocolate bar jujubes. Dragée donut candy.

Join My Educational Community

View blogs




Follow Along

Learn More

Sweet biscuit sugar plum. Halvah chocolate bar jujubes. Dragée donut candy.

Meet Massy

While it’s not always obvious, sometimes we can be our own worst enemy. We do things like procrastinate, push people away, drink excessively, set unrealistic goals, and break our own boundaries. We don’t do these things because we’re broken or crazy, and we don’t do them because we lack willpower or discipline. Self-sabotage isn’t about being lazy, it’s about you doing your best to cope. Sabotaging yourself, or being in control of certain areas in your life might give you a false sense of control. This might feel safer rather than allowing yourself to be vulnerable to being hurt by something or someone. Give yourself some compassion for trying to cope, and survive, however that has looked like. And remember, who you are and who you have been is not who you will always be. You are always allowed to start new and change old patterns and we’re here to help along the way.

Signs of self-sabotage

  • You have too high expectations of yourself

  • You are overly self-critical

  • You tend to be pessimistic

  • You regularly procrastinate

  • You are constantly disorganized

  • You often have a low self-esteem

  • You feel like an imposter

  • You don’t honor your boundaries

  • You overwork, overcommit, overwork, over-perform, overthink and overdo

  • You’re exhausted and experience burnout


3 ways you’re self-sabotaging


You may be consciously, or unconsciously sabotaging your romantic relationship, family, friendships, or yourself. This can look like settling in a romantic relationship out of comfort to avoid the fear of starting over. Or this can look like constant self-criticism and self-doubt. You may discourage yourself before you even try something out of fear of failure.


Do you struggle with self-sabotaging your career goals, work, business, or finance? You may be starting more projects than you can finish, saying “yes” when you don’t want to, or ignoring when you need breaks. You may create self-imposed rules that are too hard to follow, or maybe you don’t allow yourself good things unless you “earn” them. Financial self-sabotage can look like overspending or avoiding your financial situation.


Neglecting one’s health is the most common way we self-sabotage. This means neglecting your mental, emotional, physical, and spiritual health. This neglect can look like not asking for help when you need it, emotional eating, and staying up late when you need to wake up early. Self-sabotaging your health can also look like past-due doctor visits, not taking your medications, and ignoring your body.


How to stop self-sabotaging

  1. notice what’s happening

    The first step in changing any habit is self-awareness, so get curious about your self-sabotage. Think about any areas you tend to self-sabotage in and any triggers you can identify. What does your self-sabotage look like? How does it typically start? Can you identify the pattern? When we get better at noticing when we start self-sabotaging, we also get better at knowing when to intervene. The next time you sense yourself starting to self-sabotage, try to pause and get familiar with what is happening in your mind and body first.

  2. Challenge your thoughts and feelings

    After you’ve become familiar with your self-sabotage pattern, you will be more equipped to challenge your thoughts and feelings when it starts to happen again. A good way to be prepared for this is to come up with three to five self-awareness questions for when you feel yourself starting to self-sabotage. Typically, it starts in the mind. Before we act, we tend to think negatively of ourselves. What are you telling yourself? You can create your questions from there. Challenge those thoughts and feelings, and know that they are not always true. The insight you gain may tell you what you need to work through. You may uncover deeper issues, memories, and any root or core problems. Don’t ignore what comes up for you. If what is coming up is hard to process, or you would like support from a mental health professional, we encourage you to seek out help.

  3. reinforce a new pattern

    Reminder: You are always allowed to start new. After you have identified your pattern and challenged your thoughts and feelings, it’s time to choose a new pattern. This part is exciting! Think about who you want to be and start speaking to their potential. Visualize how you see yourself free of self-sabotage and the shame attached. Be intentional here. One way to do this is by using affirmations to help ease negative self-talk and strengthen confidence. Creating a new pattern is difficult, choosing this pattern every time is even more so. Acknowledge the strength it takes to choose confidence, growth, and healing.

  4. stay compassionate

    If you do go through your pattern again, which you most likely will because it may be deeply engrained, you can use this opportunity to process through the steps that happened. Remember that changing this pattern and any self-sabotaging behavior takes time. Whether it’s addiction, overeating, or procrastinating, it will take time to create, reinforce, and maintain a new path. Eventually, you will find that going to this new path becomes easier and easier. Keep being curious, keep challenging old thoughts and beliefs, and keep reinforcing new and healthier ways of being. You’ve got this.

Related: FREE Relationship check-up mini-course.

Want to read more? Catch up on our latest blogs below.

Join my educational community.

Ready to learn more about mental health resources and practical tools?