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Do YOU self-sabotage? Psychologist reveals six signs

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Do YOU self-sabotage? Psychologist reveals six signs from constant procrastination to setting impossibly high standards

A psychologist has revealed six ways you may be self-sabotaging – from setting impossibly high standards for yourself to discouraging yourself before you even try.

Dr Lalitaa Suglani, a chartered psychologist based in Birmingham, shared the information in a post on Instagram, where she has more than 110,000 followers. 

In the post, she said behaviour is said to be self-sabotaging ‘when it creates problems in daily life and interferes with long-standing goals’.  

Dr Lalitaa added that people self-sabotage for a variety of reasons, which can include ‘fear, poor self-esteem, trust issues, high expectations, and inadequate relationship skills’.

Are you self-sabotaging? A psychologist says behaviour is said to be self-sabotaging'when it creates problems in daily life and interferes with long-standing goals'

Are you self-sabotaging? A psychologist says behaviour is said to be self-sabotaging ‘when it creates problems in daily life and interferes with long-standing goals’

She explained: ‘To avoid uncomfortable feelings people will stay somewhere they feel “safe”, control and comfortable even though they know they do not want to be there.’

However, the psychologist noted that it is possible to overcome self-sabotage, and offered information and tips on how to achieve just that.

Dr Lalitaa reveals six ways you may be self-sabotaging

1. Discouraging yourself before you even try.

2. Saying ‘yes’ when you want to say ‘no’ because you don’t want to upset the other person.

3. Ignoring signs that you need a break leading to stress, anxiety and burnout.

4. Setting high expectations that are unrealistic to reach.

5.  Constant procrastination.

6.  Not allowing yourself things until you have ‘earned’ it or putting yourself down.

She wrote: ‘You can overcome self-sabotage by becoming conscious over your patterns of behaviour and changing them. 

‘The more awareness you gain over your patterns the more you can implement small changes to your daily life to help you overcome them.’

Among the six signs you may be self-sabotaging, Dr Lalitaa listed discouraging yourself before you even try.

Saying ‘yes’ when you want to say ‘no’ because you don’t want to upset the other person, was another factor that was added to the list.

She added that ignoring signs that you need a break leading to stress, anxiety and burnout is a further sign that you may be self-sabotaging.

Meanwhile, setting high expectations that are unrealistic to reach also took a spot on Dr Lalitaa’s list of six signs of self-sabotage.

A further sign included by the psychologist was constant procrastination.

Finally, she said, not allowing yourself things until you have ‘earned’ it or putting yourself down, is also a sign you may be self-sabotaging.

Dr Lalitaa added that self-sabotage ‘often stems from low self-esteem, negative self-talk, and related negative emotions’.

These, she went on to explain in the comment accompanying her post, are ‘continually reinforced by the resulting failure’. 

She wrote: ‘You can beat self-sabotage by monitoring your behaviours, feelings, thoughts, and beliefs about yourself, and challenging them when they stand between you and your goals.’

The psychologist shared four tips you can use to try and help when it comes to self-sabotage.

She suggested identifying your self-sabotaging behaviours, creating a journaling habit and practicing mindfulness.

Her fourth tip when it comes to trying to beat self-sabotage is not comparing yourself to others.

Dr Lalitaa also noted: ‘Instagram is not a substitute for therapy. Please be mindful of how you interpret these posts and not to self diagnose.’

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