Physician Health and Wellness- Self Sabatage
How often do you find yourself thinking the following: I have already eaten most of it, one more bite will not kill me? I do not know why I am spending time on this; I will not be able to do it. I will start tomorrow, what is one more day? These are just a few common examples that are common with a behavior known as self-sabotage. Self-sabotage occurs when we actively or passively display thoughts or actions to prevent ourselves from reaching our goals. It tends to surface when we lack a positive mindset, not only about ourselves, but also about the goal we want to accomplish. The word goal is defined as the object of a person's ambition or effort; an aim or desired result and are present in all aspects of life. Common goals are advancing in one's career, improving personal relationships, and improving overall health.
The act of self-sabotage comes into play when we lack overall self-confidence that turns into frustration and a vicious cycle of feeling stuck, which ultimately leads to failure. When you lack self-worth, you lack belief in yourself. You start telling yourself you are not good enough, smart enough, not qualified enough. That the process is too hard, and only works for other people, not for you. Ultimately, you give up and failure occurs, which leads to justification that it was too difficult to begin with. This is where self-reflection comes into play. Why are you setting yourself up to fail? How do you overcome yourself and your mindset?
Oftentimes, the goal we set for ourselves is too big, so when we do not receive immediate gratification, we give up, which adds to our low self-worth.
Consider these common goals:
- Earn more money in my career
- Lose 50 pounds
Both goals require large amounts of work to be accomplished. If we get turned down for a promotion, or do not lose weight right away, we will convince ourselves that it is too difficult and quit.
How do we set ourselves up for success? Consider these ideas when setting goals.
- Set small goals that can be easily accomplished. When you feel like you have accomplished something, your confidence improves. You feel like you are in control of your success. Once you start feeling accomplished, you will want to go for more. You will also be able to set new goals often. As soon as you accomplish one goal, create a new one. Consider our examples above. Those would be considered the ultimate outcome.
The first goals would look something like the following:
A. Outcome: Earn more money in my career Goal: Find out the criteria for the next step in my career
B. Outcome: Lose 50 pounds Goal: Go for a 30 minute walk at least 3 times a week
Write your goals down. Studies have shown that when we visualize what we want to accomplish, we are more likely to achieve it. Keep a journal of your progress that allows you to see what your setbacks and motivations are. This will allow you to hold yourself accountable when it becomes seemingly difficult.
Do not set yourself up to fail. No one knows yourself better than you. Do not set goals that will exceed your abilities. Do not apply for a higher paying job knowing you are not qualified. Do not take on an advanced exercise program when you have not worked out in years. Understand and accept your limits. You will find that those limits decrease as you go, allowing you to take on more as you progress.
Always remember, you cannot change unless you change what you are doing. Understand what that means when you set goals for yourself. Do not get caught up in self-sabotage resulting in failure. Push yourself out of the way in order to get where you want to be. You will find that the result is much more rewarding than you ever imagined.
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