Do you sometimes feel like you’re standing in your own way? You may be self-sabotaging without even realizing it. In this post, I will explore the three most common signs of self-sabotage and how to recognize them in your own life.

What does self-sabotage look like?

Once a rising star in the world of finance, Emily took a step back from her career to raise her two children. Though she loved being a mother, she couldn’t shake the feeling that she had abandoned her dreams and aspirations. She wanted to get back to her professional life, but each time an opportunity came up, she hesitated, feeling guilty and selfish for even considering prioritizing herself.

As the years went, Emily felt increasingly trapped and unfulfilled. She wasn’t growing to her full potential, which left her frustrated, resentful, and deeply unhappy. This had an impact on her relationship with her husband and the overall harmony within the family. Not making herself a priority, and avoiding taking action, Emily was engaging in self-sabotage which had a negative effect on her and her family’s well-being and her ability to realize her dreams.

We self-sabotage when our thoughts and behaviors don’t align with what’s important to us or what we truly want. Self-sabotage may be conscious or unconscious; it may be rooted in underlying fears, insecurities, and limiting beliefs; and it invariably undermines our ability to grow, achieve our goals, and fulfill our potential. It’s the invisible enemy within. The good news? If you recognize the signs of self-sabotage, you can begin to break free from its grip and start living the life you want and deserve. Here are the most common signs:

  1. Procrastination and Perfectionism: A Deadly Duo

You may constantly postpone working on a task or making a decision until the last minute; or you may obsess about getting every little detail perfectly right and feel paralyzed by the fear that your efforts will never be good enough, so much so that you end up not doing anything. Procrastination and perfectionism often go hand in hand. They both stress you and prevent you from achieving what you’re truly capable of.

  1. Not prioritizing yourself (or feeling guilty if you do)

Are you always the last one on your to-do list? Do you feel selfish or guilty if you try to carve out time for yourself, whether it’s for self-care, personal development, or pursuing your professional and other aspirations? Consistently prioritizing others over yourself is another common form of self-sabotage, which, over time, can lead you to feel burned out, resentful, and unfulfilled.

  1. Letting negative self-talk take over

Is the voice in your head (also called your inner critic) constantly negative or discouraging? Do you often have thoughts like: “I’m not good at this,” “I’m not good enough,” or “I don’t deserve this”? These limiting beliefs damage your confidence and self-esteem, prevent you from taking advantage of opportunities, and therefore keep you stuck.

The price of self-sabotage is high, and the time to act is now.

The journey towards overcoming self-sabotage begins with understanding the signs, acknowledging the patterns we engage in, and choosing to rise above them.

If you’re ready to address and slay your self-sabotaging behaviors, reach out and let’s talk. We can work together to identify the barriers that hold you back and create a plan for you to break free and start living a life that fulfills your true potential and honors your aspirations.


Thank you for being here! If you want to understand where you feel trapped in your life and how you can break free, take my free Break Free Quiz !

And if you are new to the Breaking Free blog, read my introduction here for more information about what it’s about and what topics I tackle in my posts.