You may be working to lose weight or improve your health because you’ve faced a life threatening illness, quit drinking alcohol after years of struggling to be sober or find the romantic partner who you’ve dreamed about your entire life. You have made great strides in losing weight having lost 50 lbs. and regained your health and vitality, been sober for nearly a year or finally gathered up the courage to get out to a social venue to meet your dream partner. Just when you think you’re on your way to reaching your goals, you reach for those 2 extra fudge brownies, martini cocktail or ignore the call from the person who you had a great time with and who expressed interest in you after your night out on the town. If this sounds familiar, you’re not alone.
Self-sabotage behavior frequently occurs when you ARE making significant progress and are aligned with your life’s deepest desires. What may seem like regression or being “stuck” in a pattern of behavior that does not serve you, actually is a mechanism of self-protection. As you work on your goals and face the unfamiliar (e.g., getting attention from interested romantic suitors, refusing the cocktail from a friend you are used to spending time with, saying to no to the host who baked the brownies and is a good colleague at work ), you may experience discomfort, feel “unworthy” and experience guilt. So rather than accept these experiences, you engage in behaviors that are familiar and comfortable.
In order to move past your self-sabotage behavior patterns, you need to recognize that it is occurring because you’ve faced and overcome similar situations in your past. Once you understand that you are not “stuck” and that your behavior is your mind’s way of keeping you safe, it is important that you embrace your uncomfortable feelings or thoughts without self-judgment. By learning to mindfully accept your discomfort and adopting an attitude of curiosity and compassion, you will be able to more effectively respond to the unfamiliar situations that will invariable show up because you are now a different person.
Once you have embraced being curious, reflect on what you need in order to feel safe and be true in your life in order to reach your goals. Very often, your life structure or fear of change keeps you from making bigger changes in your life (e.g., addressing your work colleagues who know that you are trying to lose weight, finding new friends to socialize with who do not drink alcohol, learning to first love yourself) that you need to lose those last 10 lbs., celebrate your sobriety or be with your dream partner.
To your health and success,
To learn more about how working with a psychologist and holistic health coach can help you to enhance your health and well being, call or email Dr. Sandoval to schedule a free consultation.
The information, published and/or made available through the www.drjosesandoval.com website, is not intended to replace the services of a physician, nor does it constitute a physician-patient relationship. This blog is for informational purposes only and is not a substitute for professional medical advice. You should not use the information in this post for diagnosing or treating a medical or health condition. You should consult a physician in all matters relating to your health, particularly in respect to any symptoms that may require diagnosis or medical attention. Any action on the reader’s part in response to the information provided in this blog is at the reader’s discretion.