7 Tiny Ways You Sabotage Any Chance Of Success

Stop holding yourself back.

Get off the hamster wheel and stop sabotaging your success allanswart | Canva, Ahmed Carter | Unsplash

Most of us race towards the grave with our foot on the break. We wonder why we never got what we dreamed of in our youth. There are several innocent ways we place a big block between ourselves and what we want.

Here are 7 tiny ways you sabotage any chance of success:

1. You're stuck on who you used to be 

Nowhere does it say that we are obliged to act like the person we used to be. A classmate called you stupid in French class, and now you tell yourself the story of how "you’re just not that smart." Your mom said you were lazy because you never tidied up your CD collection, so you still cling to the made-up idea that you’re a "lazy person." None of it is true. It’s just an idea. You can be whoever you want to be.


Personality is an illusion, and you can break free at any moment. If you need to bring the heat, don’t wait for your "personality" to give you the go-ahead. Seize it with everything you have.

RELATED: Why You Shouldn't Be Afraid To Just Be Yourself

2. You're terrified of upsetting people

Most people are dead scared of upsetting people. Take advantage of this by being different. You must be willing to receive many uncomfortable nos if you want a yes. You need to be okay with the idea that some people will not like you. If we try to please everyone, we will unconsciously water down our efforts and diminish our effectiveness. Nothing that ever had a significant impact wasn’t polarizing. You must be a steely-eyed warrior in the face of potential rejection, actively seek it out, and develop a taste for it. The alternative is to live off scraps like everyone else.


3. You do 'just enough'

Being surrounded by sheep can have a curious effect on our enthusiasm and zest for life: we sink to the lowest common denominator and dilute our work ethic. Stop it immediately. There is an invisible current pushing against all of us. It’s called "Universal PushBack Beast Flow," and it’s there for a reason: to filter out the wimps from the heroes who are willing to step up and do something with their lives. If you do "just enough," you will fall back. If you push with continual ferocity and don’t back down, you demonstrate that you have what it takes, and you will move forward. If you fail to grasp that the Universe is testing you at every turn, you will struggle.

RELATED: 8 Steps to Systematically Stop Yourself From Ever Making Excuses Again

4. You blame your circumstances

  • You didn’t have a strong father figure.
  • You have ‘non-creative’ genes.
  • You didn’t have a privileged enough upbringing.
  • You’re too comfortable and coddled and thus not motivated.
  • You have children.
  • You aren’t driven to succeed because you’re single.

All excuses can be overcome when you side-step the thought that you "can’t." You must be intrinsically motivated, meaning you bring passion, power, and enjoyment to all that you do, no matter how seemingly tedious the task.


5. You don't finish tasks

You might argue that there are just so many cutesy cool mega-awesome things in the world that you couldn’t say no to. Great, your life is filled with novelty, but you’re running on a treadmill. People with momentum are relentlessly biased toward finishing and shipping things. They know that finishing is a habit. You must exercise the finishing muscle, even in small things. When you wash the dishes, finish them. When you clean the house, get into those corners. This habit will mold your unwavering identity as a ‘finisher,’ and transfer into all areas. You’ll be forced to simplify, and you’ll gain traction quickly.

RELATED: How To Stop Wasting Time And Finally Get Stuff Done

6. You have a problem with boredom

You don’t impress me if you tell me "I’m rarely bored." Big whoop. The true heroes are those who can feel the numbing vines of boredom grow thick, and stay with the feeling. Boredom is your gateway to insight and the deepest well of creative color. Most sabotage themselves because they escape to YouTube cat videos at the first sign of discomfort. Winners collaborate with boredom; sit with the feeling, and allow wisdom to flow from this presence.

bored woman Tirachard Kumtanom / Shutterstock


7. You see success as an ‘option’

If you regard success as an option for you, congratulations — you just secured a future of mediocrity and frustration. You must be rigid and honest about creating your version of success. You have one life. This means generating the reality that success for you is a must — a moral obligation. Define first what success means to you. Next, structure your life to reflect your commitment to its attainment, written in your blood.

Movement in this direction is happening, no matter how you feel, and you will do whatever it takes. Success at the highest level is not an option. It’s your duty. By making this concept real in your mind. It’s already within reach. Show us how it’s done.

RELATED: If You Do These 12 Things, You're Addicted To Self-Sabotage


Alex Mathers is a writer and coach who helps you build a money-making personal brand with your knowledge and skills while staying mentally resilient.