There is a whole other aspect to sabotage that I haven’t touch on- which is fear.
Many people will not succeed with their goal because they subconsciously fear the outcome. That may not make sense on the surface because why would you want to create a goal for yourself that you are afraid of? Let me break it down for you.
(Again I am going to take the topic of weight loss)
Years ago I had a client who wanted to lose 30 pounds. However, she would only lose the same 5-15lbs over and over again. She would never completely lose the whole amount of weight she felt would make her happy and healthy.
After a couple years she confronted me and said she has no idea why she is blocked in this aspect of her life as she is very successful in all other areas and any goal she creates, she smashes.
I asked her what she is afraid of. She looked at me and cocked her head. She said, “I have no idea!” So I said we will dig deeper. I had her pretend she was already at her goal and asked what could possibly go wrong when she was at her thirty pound weight loss. I finally saw it click in her mind. She said, “Well I could gain it all back. (Pause) Oh my gosh, that is actually what I am afraid of!”
Aha. Well then we just hit the nail on the head. The reason why she is not allowing herself to lose all the weight is because she is afraid she will just gain it all back again. Her subconscious thoughts are holding her back- she does not want to lead herself towards disappointment so why should she go through all the “dieting” trouble again?
Essentially she doesn't trust herself to lose the weight and keep it off.
I had asked her what this stems from and she said that her sister and mother would always try crash diets and would yo-yo back and forth with their weight. They were always on such a high when they were skinny and always miserable when they put the weight back on. She didn’t want to live a life like that.
Sadly she was watching someone else’s journey and and equating that with her own which was keeping her from health, success and happiness in her life.
You can never align someone else’s life with your own. Never. There are too many differences, variables and situations. For instance, my client may have had the most supportive husband, enough time to food prep, enough time to workout, the funds to hire a trainer for guidance and advice, different belief systems, and supportive friends. Maybe her mother or sister only had half that, or they had more excuses in their mind, more limiting beliefs, etc.
I had her visualize herself at her 30lb weight loss (and keep it off)- I asked her what does that feel like, what does that look like and how does she feel about herself. She thought of this daily as she woke up in the morning and fell asleep at night. We also made action steps for her to follow- ones that felt doable in her lifestyle. Whenever creating a goal, you never want to flood yourself with change so much that it is overwhelming and you can't keep up with it all. Take one step at a time.
Update- when I was leaving the the fitness studio I had worked at years ago, she was well on her way to losing her thirty pounds. She broke through her 5-15lb weight loss plateau and was going strong!
If you are having trouble reaching your goal (it could be any goal at all), I want you to ask yourself, “What am I afraid of if I were to reach that goal? What could go wrong?”. Your answer is what is keeping you from accomplishing the goal and you are subconsciously sabotaging yourself because you feel as though you don't deserve it or don’t want the success. Once you have those answers, then get clear on your why, wipe out your old beliefs, visual yourself at your goal, and take action.