September 9, 2019

Why we Self-Sabotage & a simple way to Stop.


View this post on Instagram


A post shared by Elephant Journal (@elephantjournal) on

I overheard a conversation a few days ago, where someone said: “Why do I keep doing this? I don’t understand! I’m just an idiot.”

“Time is a great healer,” their friend replied. Ooh—that classic adage! It had popped up its head like an old shaman. Because when all is lost, that’s all we can hope for, right?

Unfortunately, while time provides distance from painful events, and while we consciously forget, our body and our mind—a.k.a. the subconscious—still remembers.

The subconscious, our self-appointed protector, remembers that it failed you, and it’s pretty damn unforgiving about it. Now it’s on hyper-alert; it never wants to fail you again. Now it wants to keep you safe and happy, and it sure as hell will never fail you again.

The ultimate reason we self-sabotage is that we haven’t healed from our past pain—despite the promises of time. We have just managed to hide the pain superbly well.

We have an internal pattern of thinking that few of us know about, and I am going to share these hidden maneuverings with you today.

The important thing is that we don’t need to heal the pain, but we do need to know when that pain—the moment we are about to self-sabotage—is rearing its protective but dreadful head.

We know the why, so what can we do to train our brain to do something different and still keep us safe?

Here is my quick and easy three-step formula. It’s simple to do, but requires a wee bit of an explanation so stay with me.

1. Pinpoint the moment when you are about to self-sabotage.

Are you about to send a message to the boss that you shouldn’t? Are you about to kick off a fight with your partner about something you will regret?

2. Ask yourself: “What is my key want?

The reason our subconscious wants to protect us from further pain is because there are four “wants” it is desperately searching for and isn’t getting:

>> Safety
>> Control
>> Love
>> Validation

So, if you are about to send that message to your boss, it might be because there’s a power dynamic at play and you want control. If you’re about to kick off with your partner, it might have something to do with wanting love. Feel me?

3. Once you know your want, all you’ve gotta do is surrender to it.

No, this is not some yoga hogwash. As soon as we recognise what the want is and surrender to it, the intensity of it will disappear. And then we’re in a way better space to do our thing.

Your message to the boss will be way less emotional. You will be able to have a far more chilled conversation with your fella, rather than have a kick off.

So, sadly, time has not healed your shizzle. It’s still just a hidden, gaping wound. Your subconscious has given you a ton of false beliefs—in your best interest, of course—but now it’s time to rip off that Band-Aid and move the freak on.

Yes, you can spend years healing that wound—but in the meantime, you can use this effective tool to simply undo its power over you.


Rooting for you! Comment below: what is the main want that comes up for you?



Read 3 Comments and Reply

Read 3 comments and reply

Top Contributors Latest

Shabana Jabine  |  Contribution: 335

author: Shabana Jabine

Image: @ElephantJournal

Image: Alex Iby/Unsplash

Editor: Catherine Monkman