Today I want to discuss a behaviour which I see quite commonly called self-sabotage. Self-sabotage is a behaviour which interferes with short or long term goals. Specific to nutrition this could include behaviours that affect body fat loss, training or competition. Unfortunately most people are unaware that they are sabotaging themselves from reaching their goals. On the other end of the spectrum, some would rather stay oblivious to these behaviours then tackle it head on.
Are you someone who sabotages themselves regularly? Let us take a look at some behaviours that may affect your from reaching your goals.
Self-sabotaging behaviours could include, procrastination, smoking, drinking, comfort eating for both positive or negative outcomes, going shopping on an empty stomach, putting yourself in what you know will be a comprised situation. For example, celebrations for birthdays or work functions, post sports competitions celebrations, relationship break ups, stressful days at work.
The frustrating part for most, is although you may be able to identify the behaviours or triggers which cause self-sabotage, they may not be able to have the will power to disengage from that behaviour, or know what to do once they are in that situation. Thankfully, there are behavioural or motivational therapies/strategies that you can incorporate into your lifestyle to prevent these behaviours. You just have to be willing to try it!
Knowing your triggers and having a plan in place to remove the threat is my biggest tip. I find it is typically boredom or stress which breaks will power. Identify what sets you off and know what your danger zones are. If you find yourself in the position where the impulse has struck to sabotage yourself and you are battling with your mind as to what to do. Have a plan in place to defeat it! For example, throw out the sugary foods you have in the house, so you have to physically go out and buy it to have it. Prepare and take lunch and snacks out with you on the road for work or road trips.
Plan your time. I sit down each week if not each day and plan out my training and nutrition to ensure I do not eat what I shouldn’t or be put into a situation where I have to eat out or go hungry for a long period of time. Why? Because I know this is my downfall in terms of weight gain. If I go a long period of time without eating, I will consume more food than what I need to have. I know if I’m busy with work and will not be home for a long period of time, if I don’t take food with me again, I won’t eat properly or snack and not consume a proper meal. I know what my triggers are and have plans in place. If I get bored and feel like eating, I set myself eating times, and tell myself I can eat until a certain time. I drink more water or go for a walk.
Keep yourself accountable to someone, or ask them to do change a behaviour with you. Having someone by your side through the first few weeks especially is probably the smartest thing you could do. Ask them to find a habit that they wish to change and keep yourself accountable. If you cannot find someone to do it with you, there are plenty of support groups out there. Don’t be afraid to ask for help. If you truly and whole heartedly want to see real change, why would you not do everything you possibly could to ensure you are successful.
One thing I think you need to be open and aware of is that you will break at some point. Do not think you will stick to it 100%. Why? Because if you do fail, you will only become upset with yourself, lower your own self-esteem and motivation towards your goal; which is just as counterproductive as self-sabotage is. Do not to beat yourself up about it, but have another plan in place in case you backslide. Someone to ask for help to get you back on track, make yourself get back to healthy eating or exercise.
Going backwards is the biggest waste of time, effort and hard training. Did you actually care enough when you tried that first time, or was it a half-hearted effort? What is your motivation? Make the decision in the beginning that you are making a life style change. It’s not a diet, it’s not something that you only want to do for a short period of time. Mould yourself to become the person you want to be. If you don’t know how, ASK :)
My task for you this week is to sit down, identify those triggers and determine what your plan of attack is if the situation arises!!
Have a great week :)