How To Get Out of Your Own Way: 3 Ways to Stop Self-Sabotaging Yourself
Every now and then it gets me. The funk. The self-sabotaging. The completely wrong way to go about my day.
Some days I have no answer for why I feel so blah, or why can’t I get it together, or why I just lost my sh*t with my kids/spouse/co-worker/unsuspecting victim who happened to be in my vicinity. It just happens. And I feel cruddy. And what sucks, even more, is that it’s easier to remain in this funkified state rather than challenging it or attempting to do the work that needs to be done in order to get out of it. (Sounding familiar??)
We all crash into our funks sooner or later and when those moments arise, we have a choice to make. We can either willingly wallow in it and all its messiness, or we can take a deep breath, put on our big girls pants and make the decision to go from funkified to glorified. (The latter being the more annoying yet proper, big girl approach even though sometimes all you really, really, really want to do is be mad at the world, and the people, and the circumstances! I feel you. But that’s really a lot of wasted energy — and we all know it is. Wah!!!!)
Once you’ve given yourself permission to say Ok, this sucks, I’m in a funk and I hate everyone! you can begin to turn it around. There are a few simple things you can do to help tackle the problem, get yourself motivated, and begin to make the move from funk, to motivated and gettin’ sh*t done!
First, it would help if you didn’t:
- Take on the whole kit and kaboodle
Whether it’s losing 30 pounds, deciding on what you want to do with your life, or how you go about fixing a relationship gone haywire, the tactics are the same. You need to GET CLEAR on your goals. Like super-duper, crystaly-clear on what you want to accomplish without taking on everything at once. Us girls tend to feel like we need to tackle everything head-on, without taking a moment to breathe, think or react. It’s simply go, go, go all the time, and at the end of the day, we’re 1/2 bottle in, Instagramming, texting, ignoring the immediate world around us because we’ve got nothing left at that point. We’re spent and bitter! And then we get up the next day and hit “repeat”.
That’s why we need to get clear.
Grab a pen and just start dishing girl. Write it all down, each and every last thing you want to accomplish, or how you would like to feel. Emotions run our lives, so it’s best to get clear on them! It can be for today, for next week, a year from now, five years from now… just write it all out.
And then go back. Read it. Study it. Get to know it. Dance with it for a little bit. Get comfy and cozy in it. And then start picking at it. In fact, pick three accomplishments (or emotions) for starters. Just three because it’s time to prioritize. From those three, go down to two. Again, dance with them for a little, try them on, see how they feel, how they look. Once you’ve done that, I want you to then pick one. JUST ONE.
Clarity alleviates anxiety and fear.
It creates laser-focus. If you’re laser-focused on your goals and you know the first, simple step that you have to take, it’s so much easier than wading into the murky waters of your sub-conscious where all sorts of uncertainty, misguided beliefs, and general ickiness resides.
Decide what is it you’re looking to accomplish, or how you want to feel (ie, loved, confident, successful). Limit your to-do list to one thing and let that become your focus.
Next, you’re going to have to:
2. Take action as soon as it’s humanly possible.
There is NO WAY sitting down, contemplating, rehashing, shaming, excuse-making will help you AT ALL at this point. The only thing you can do once you decide to do something is to take action. I know I said clarity alleviates anxiety and fear, and while it does, action alleviates anxiety and fear even more!
You may fear the first step but once you take that leap, your fears stay behind. They have no faith, they have no wings, and they have no use for you when you decide to abandon them. So figure out your first actionable step and for the love of bunnies and rainbows, take that first step. Just do it. Don’t even give yourself time to talk yourself out of it. Go, jump, fly!
And if you fall flat on your face…
Don’t get discouraged. Simply change the story you’re telling yourself in your head. Just change it. You’re not pathetic, you’re not destined to be where you are, you’re not a loser who can’t follow through with anything… whatever the conversation you’re having, whatever the disappointment may be, the way it’s making you feel isn’t helping.
3. Change your language.
And again, start small and simple. Go from I don’t have the willpower to keep this up to something more helpful like, This is a simple case of mind over matter, and I will not let my own thoughts be a stumbling block for me!
When you practice this over and over again, I promise it will get easier to follow and you’ll notice you’re in less and less of a funk.
I’ve been practicing these tactics throughout the past year as our family transitioned through a move, (which left me ignoring my business and focusing all my time and energy on our kids — making sure they felt safe, comfortable and happy in their new surroundings, not to mention dealing with my own moving issues!), and they have helped me tremendously. I decided to get clear on my goals and change the stories I tell myself, which has allowed the energy around me to shift in all sorts of positive ways.
Remember to keep your goal at the forefront. That means writing it down so you can see it often. We assume we won’t forget and the inspiration and motivation we feel at the goal-setting moment won’t diminish or fade because it feels so freaking good to be so centered and focused. But we all know, it fades, it diminishes, and it sometimes simply crashes and burns all on its own like a little shooting star. So sad. So write it down and look at it every day. Every. Freaking. Day. Got it? Good.
My dear, there is nothing you can’t accomplish with that beautiful mind of yours!
Now I’d love to hear from you! What’s your personal way of dealing with the self-sabotaging funk? Do you find yourself wallowing in it for days? Or are you able to turn things around quickly? I’d love to hear your tactics!
AM Costanzo lives in Chappaqua, NY with her two rambunctious boys and her all-around awesome husband. She is a motivational junkie, loves a-ha moments and wants nothing more than to help women to feel strong, powerful and downright fabulous in their bodies!