You know those movies that you watch where you sit in your seat and cringe because you just know what’s coming next?
You’re in your head (or out loud) screaming, “Don’t go in those dark, spooky woods where you know the ax murderer has been killing people!”
But nooooo, the side character hears a noise, curiosity compels them to investigate, and BAM! They don’t make it into part two of the movie.
You knew they were sabotaging themselves, but they had no clue.
Isn’t life like that for you, sometimes?
You look back on the reel of your history and you want to holler at Past You to pay attention to the warning signs! But, alas, you didn’t, and Present You ended up with a piece of your history you’d rather have not gone through.
I know I do. There have been many, many times when I found myself mental-slapping Past Me for something Present Me knew was a bad move. But hey …
Be Kind, Rewind
Too bad there’s no rewind button in life.
What there is is the ability to learn from your lessons. Without them, you wouldn’t be who you are today, and no matter what, there’s always growth.
It’s cliche, but it’s an affirmation I frequently remind myself: I am growing forward with every mistake.
One of the things we all have in common is that, eventually, we will be the person everyone else can clearly see is walking into the woods blindly with the bad guy waiting.
Sabotaging ourselves occasionally is a perfectly normal human behavior. What you do after you’ve screwed up is what makes you grow or repeat those same mistakes.
And you know what? Those signs are predictable once you see them enough times, just like when movies get predictable.
And, like in those movies that follow the same patterns all the time, you’re probably tired of repeating the same mistakes, but you just don’t know how to stop.
Sometimes, it just takes someone else – a friend, a counselor, a loved one, a book, a blog, or even a movie – to point them out for you.
That’s why it’s so wonderful to have safe spaces like The Miracle Lab (themiraclelab.org) to visit. Here, you can find others to support you in your process to stop self sabotage.
And in the next episode of this series (yes, one of the sequels!) we are going to dive into the abuse cycle of self-sabotage. I’m going to go deep with how I had to learn to stop abusing myself, and you can, too.4