Stop Avoiding Everything!
Happy Near Year! How are your resolutions going this year so far? Have you sabotaged them yet? I hope so…
No time to make a change like tomorrow. I mean, no better time than the new year or new decade. Who am I kidding? We only make these silly resolutions to make ourselves feel better about the shitty choices we’ve made. We hope these resolutions will help us avoid feelings of shame and guilt we have about ourselves. The problem is that these resolutions are fueled by instant gratification, ‘not good enough’ beliefs, and other forms of self-doubt. It is a setup from the beginning. But you wouldn’t know that. It just a reenactment of past failures. We try to avoid failure and…we still feel like failures. But why?
We all have a frame of reference. This frame of reference is the filter we put everything through that gives the world, our relationships, and ourselves meaning. What we believe about ourselves is confirmed through this frame of reference. This reference point is largely shaped by our parents, our peers, how we were raised, and the early experiences we had in our childhood. It’s not good or bad. It just “is”. This is important because our frame of reference causes conflict with what we deeply long for–happiness, love, and contentment.
Why do we self-sabotage?
Many people self-sabotage in many different ways. The patterns of self-sabotage have been reinforced over years of behavioral commitments. Awareness in itself is healing. The first thing to figure out is how will I sabotage myself. This is important because you will self-sabotage. Once you can answer these questions with honesty you can shift your awareness to why I self-sabotage.
Write these down and answer:
How will I sabotage?
What I will do instead?
It’s simple. People sabotage to avoid something. All sabotage behavior is avoidant behavior. We avoid what we don’t want to feel or accept. It can be very difficult to “be with” how we really think about ourselves and others. It is vulnerable to be present with ourselves and experience our authentic emotions and thoughts. We are clever in ways we numb our pain through self-distraction and avoidance.
You may work long hours to avoid connecting with your spouse or family or to avoid financial insecurity. You may put off schoolwork or some work project to do something you want to do. Procrastination is avoidance. What are you avoiding when you procrastinate? Maybe you scroll through your social media feeds endlessly throughout your day. How does this distraction serve you? Apple and Android recently started tracking how much our individual phones spend on social media. That screwed everything up! I did not want to know that–like when fast food started putting calories on their menus. Nothing ever tasted good after that. They sure screwed that up.
Drugs, alcohol, divorce and separation, compulsive online shopping, and even some forms of mild suicidal ideation are forms of avoidance. When things get emotionally unbearable, we seek to escape. The escape is the sabotage.
The truth is–you are capable of achieving your goals. You have to give yourself space to be “in the process” of what you are wanting to achieve because that’s more valuable than achieving the goal. That space will provide you with all the information you need to learn the subtle ways you fuck yourself out of your happiness and such. Bringing awareness to thoughts and emotions is the intellect needed to transform your life—that’s why you have these goals and aspirations, to begin with. You will do this…give yourself grace and allow for errors.
It’s not a resolution; it’s a REVOLUTION!!
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