Tell me, would you sabotage your own success? Of course not! … Or would you?
I would like to share an article that I wrote for Entrepreneur with you.
When I talk about sabotage, I’m not talking about the obvious things like always showing up late (or not at all), being too casual with clients, procrastinating to the point of inaction or thinking flip flops are appropriate meeting attire.
I’m talking about the daily habits, practices and perspectives that keep you stuck and prevent you from moving towards your goals.
Here are 5 ways you may be sabotaging your own success…and what to do instead:
1. You listen to your Gremlins
We all have voices in our heads telling us we’re not good enough, smart enough, credentialed enough… I call these voices “Gremlins”. Gremlins want to keep you safe by locking you into your comfort zone. But all they really do is hold you back.
What to do instead: Gremlins aren’t bad, just scared. Thank them for looking out for you, but tell them their fears are not welcome. Then shut them out. Instead, focus on that voice inside you that says, “Go for it! You can do it! This will be amazing!” Give that voice the megaphone.
2. You focus on failure or setbacks
Sometimes things don’t work out the way you hoped or planned. That’s disappointing. But focusing on the things that don’t work blinds you to the things that do, and it keeps you stuck in a negative frame of mind.
What to do instead: Confront your feelings so you can move past them. It may be as simple as talking it through, but if you’re struggling to move on, consider writing out your feelings then burning them (safely). Witnessing negative feelings literally go up in smoke, saying “I release you” as they burn away, and welcoming in positive feelings can be a very powerful practice.
Once you’ve let those negative feelings go, choose to see the failure or setback as a gift. There may be a lesson, or an experience to be shared. Take what you can, then move on.
3. You don’t celebrate success
How can you be excited about your path if you aren’t recognizing the steps you take? Motivation can be the most difficult part of any journey. Recognizing your successes, however small, helps keep you fired up and excited about the steps ahead.
What to do instead: Celebrate and record your successes. Did you finish that huge project a day before deadline? Celebrate! Did you assemble that Ikea desk for your new home office on your own with no leftover bits? Celebrate! Then record that success. One way is to record successes on your planner or calendar (physical or online) using a distinct colour so that you can always look back and remember how incredible you are.
4. You see struggle instead of opportunity
No matter what you are trying to achieve, you will inevitably run into challenges. That part is out of your control. What you do control is how you perceive those challenges. If you choose to only see the struggle, you’re in for a tough road.
What to do instead: Recognize the opportunity to better yourself. A challenge can be a chance to develop a new skill, make new contacts, increase your knowledge and even boost your resume. The next time you’re asked for an example of a challenge you overcame, you’ll be ready.
5. You focus on tasks over big picture
Life gets busy! There will always be some task that needs doing. But are those tasks helping you move towards what you truly want? If you aren’t consciously taking daily steps towards your big picture vision, you’ll end up lost in a sea of to-do lists.
What to do instead: Make decisions from where you want to be, not where you are. Visualize yourself having already achieved what you want, ensuring that it is aligned with your core values. What would “you” of your ideal future have been working on right now in order to make that future happen? From that perspective, make lists of what you need to say “yes” and “no” to in order to move forward. Maybe it’s “yes” to that weekend workshop and “no” to social media, or “yes” to working on your side business and “no” to that extra shift at the job you don’t want to still be at in 5 years.
If you truly want to be the CEO of your life, to make your success happen, you need to be willing to take control of your future and to take 100% responsibility for your present. You will never be able to control the things happening around you, but you can always control how you perceive them and react to them.
Don’t be your own saboteur.
If you have a group or organization that needs help removing saboteurs so they can take it to the next level, I invite you to contact me.
Wishing you an energizing day!