So I learned pretty quick that if I’m afraid of doing something that I should seriously consider doing it. But what about the opposite situation? Deciding NOT to do something that harms us but we feel compelled to do? For me specifically, I’m thinking of my compulsion to eat rubbish food. This is when people rant on about the need for willpower. In my experience, making something happen or not happen through the sheer force of my will is incredibly draining. It means denying that there is anything to look at in regards to the compulsion and to simply shame, berate, nag and manipulate myself to just STOP IT! Yelling at myself like a child who will not stop throwing things or jumping on the couch.
There’s always a reason behind a compulsion. The problem is we probably don’t think our reasons are acceptable or “good enough” to justify the behaviour. We know better so why don’t we do better? I’ve come to the conclusion that I must have a strong belief around my need to eat crap. That I believe I NEED to eat it. This belief is going to trump knowledge backed by screeds of scientific information every time because beliefs sit at the core of who we think we are.
Ok, so I have worked out via this train of thought that I have a belief that compels me to eat food that makes me feel disgusting. Even as I start to consider what that belief might be a thought has popped in to say “whatever that belief is, it’s going to be REALLY hard to change”. How funny that I have a belief about a belief I haven’t even discovered yet.
I think the reason overcoming self sabotage has been so difficult for me is because it disguises itself as self love. I allow myself to be convinced that I want to partake is sabotaging behaviour. For example, “I’m craving sugar, I should give myself what I want”. It’s a huge mind game. I’m not sure how to win at that game, perhaps the answer is to not play at all. I can’t really tell my mind that I’m not playing with it anymore though now can I? Hmmm it’s a tough one, I'll have to come back to uncovering that belief.
In the meantime, my good friend and amazing mentor Nicola Price, gave some golden advice on overcoming self sabotaging behaviour via one of her vlogs. Of all the things she mentioned, I personally I love the idea of bringing the future to the present. I know how sick, bloated and yuck I feel after shovelling crap food down my throat, I just need to feel into that before I partake in the self sabotaging behaviour. Her suggested technique, as well as others mentioned in her vlog, present a great way to softly melt away self sabotaging behaviour. It’s worth trying if it means that next Christmas I will not be up at 3am scoffing my children’s left over chocolate Santas before anyone sees. Eating way more than my poor body can handle so that all traces are gone and I can deny even to myself that I did it. Do you know I even told myself it was better I ate it than they did? Like I was some sort of hero saving them from a chocolatey hell. You gotta laugh at the lengths to which the mind will go to keep you safe in your self sabotaging beliefs. And to those beliefs I am hereby giving notice. You will be found out and you will be asked to vacate the premises. My next blog will be an eviction notice - you can count on that.
Bron (self sabotage overcomer)