Self-Sabotaging Thoughts Prevent Happiness

Without a doubt, self-sabotaging thoughts prevent happiness.  These types of thoughts will typically focus on what’s wrong, what’s missing, or the negativity of the situation instead of the positives. They are destructive. They become a form of mental programming and have the potential to become a default setting if left unconfronted.

Self-Sabotaging Thoughts Prevent Happiness:
The Human Brain Isn't That Smart...

Contrary to what one may think, the human brain is powerful but it isn’t that smart. It’s malleable; it believes what it’s told.  Every message you tell yourself has the ability to become reality to the brain. This is great news! We can fight this; we can turn the tables on this negative programming.

Self-Sabotaging Thoughts Prevent Happiness:
Ted Doesn't Like Some People 

The following are some examples of self-sabotaging thoughts:

 ·       “I Don’t Like People” – As we witness all of the negativity in the world, it’s easy to think people suck. Quite honestly, I continue to struggle with this. I assume partial responsibility. I say this because I believe the news and social media, the all access, 24/7, cesspool of negativity should share the blame. Equally concerning is the fact that the more you focus on these people and venues, the greater the likelihood of becoming just like them.

We must first begin by removing these “factories of despair” from our lives. Next, it’s crucial that you reframe the thought as follows: I don’t like some people. This is a fair assessment. It makes your thought pattern less severe and opens up the possibility of observing great acts of humanity. It is possible. We are surrounded by great people everywhere we go. It’s difficult to see them because your mind has been conditioned to focus on all of the crap in the world. Note: You can further separate yourself from the thought by saying your name instead of “I.” For example: “Ted doesn’t like some people.”


Self-Sabotaging Thoughts Prevent Happiness"
I Am Too Valuable To Sell Myself Short

·       “I Am Too ____” - Anytime you start a thought with: “I am too”, you have ensured your failure. We build our own mental prisons when we believe we are “too” anything. I challenge you to remember a time when you completed anything after first telling yourself: I’m too: old, overweight, underweight, short, tall, anxious, dumb, damaged … you fill in the blank. There are enough mean people in the world so stop being mean to yourself! Reframing thought: “I am too valuable to sell myself short. I’ve come so far and I am not quitting!”

Self-Sabotaging Thoughts Prevent Happiness:
Give Procrastination Its Marching Orders

·       “I’ll  Do That When I ______” - “I’ll do that when I go back to school.” “I’ll do that when I clean the house.” “I’ll do that when I lose weight.” No, you won’t. These are excuses for procrastination – mental roadblocks you’ve put in place because you don’t want to experience the discomfort of facing a challenge.

You know the script because you’ve become the script. Unless you absolutely need to do the thing in the blank, don’t allow that to get in your way. If you do need to do it, just make a step-by-step plan to get it done and move forward. Reframing thought: “I’ll do this right now, I am done running from my fears. It’s time to defeat them once and for all.”  

Self-Sabotaging Thoughts Prevent Happiness:
At One Time In My Life, I Didn't Know How To Do Anything ...

·       “I Can’t Do _____” - You may have heard your child, yourself, or someone else state that “I can’t do math.” Or “I can’t cook.” Think about this: just about everything we are able to do was once something “we couldn’t do.” No one just pops out of the womb knowing how to cook, read, write, do math, or operate a computer. Anyone can learn whatever they want to learn given the time and effort to do it. Reframing thought: “I know I can do this if I allow myself to learn and make the effort.”

 ·       “I Don’t Deserve ____” – Nothing spells failure more than the words: “I don’t deserve ____.” In order to overcome this, ask yourself why you feel this way and figure out what you need to do to remove these words from your vocabulary. Talk to a therapist, make amends, learn to love yourself (again, or for the first time ever). Otherwise, you will “never deserve it.” 

Reframing thought: “I deserve to live my life at its highest level. I regret my mistakes but it’s time to prove to myself and others that I am a good person willing to move ahead. I will no longer waste the limited time I have on this beautiful planet.”  

·       “Nothing Ever Works” – I have to work on this one! As soon as something doesn’t go according to my plan, my brain chimes in and says Nothing Ever Works. It only adds more fuel to the fire which won’t help the current situation. It’s also reinforcing the negative kneejerk reaction for the next time something “doesn’t work.” It’s a self-defeating brain loop. Reframing thought: “Sometimes things don’t go according to plan. I will figure out another way to make this work.”

·       “Saying I Should ____” - Have you ever heard that it’s important not to “should” all over everyone? Not only is it a bad idea to “should” on others, it’s a terrible idea to "should" on yourself!  Reframing thought: “I should be good to myself by focusing on my strengths and accomplishments.”

·       “In the Past ___” - Dwelling on the past and what someone did to you or what you did to others is another form of self-sabotaging thinking which prevents happiness. While it’s okay to use the past as a learning example, it’s not okay to use it as an excuse not to move forward. Think of this: all you have is the present moment. If you live in the past, you are robbing yourself of the here and now. Reframing thought: “The past has passed! It’s water under the bridge. I will no longer waste time and energy carrying its weight.”

·       “In the Future ____” - Just like you do not want to focus on the past you also don’t want to be overly focused on the future. I hope this doesn’t happen, but tomorrow I could drop dead in my tracks. I mustn’t waste the gift of the here and now. Today is all anyone has for sure.  Reframing thought: The future is not guaranteed. All I have is the present. It’s called PRESENT because it is a GIFT!”

·       “If I Was More Like Them” – Never compare yourself to someone else in a negative way. I know, I keep attacking social media, but it’s the best place to visit if you want to feel badly about yourself. Humans have a tendency to compare themselves to the snapshots of “friends” who appear to “have it all” – the new job, the boat, the vacation with palm trees and cocktails.

But let’s be real, you aren’t getting the full story so stop comparing yourself to others. You may not want to be more like these people if you had a view of their actual life. It’s okay to look at what someone else has accomplished, but don’t use it as ammunition against yourself. We all walk different paths, each of which present unique challenges – guaranteed. Reframing thought: “I don’t want to be anyone but myself. Being more like them may actually be worse than being me!”

Self-Sabotaging Thoughts Prevent Happiness:
It's Time To Increase Your Strength

These self-sabotaging thoughts prevent happiness – period. It is very important to reframe them whenever they surface. Doing so will take away their power while increasing yours!

Flip the script and turn it into personal victory! ~ Ted Stefanski 

You are what you feed yourself. I'm talking about both the body and mind. Having a negative outlook stems from not being fully confident in yourself. In order to find the positive in your life, start with what's amazing about yourself. Practice these strategies daily to reinforce that self-sabotaging thoughts prevent happiness. Get in the habit of regular self-care and stick to it. This will help you change your outlook towards whatever situation presents itself. Baby steps!

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Self-Sabotaging Thoughts Prevent Happiness  and More Self-Esteem Goodness