Friday, November 19, 2010

You Fit Friday #3

Today's topic is:


We've all experienced it.  Whether by or through another person, factors surrounding us (weekends, holiday's, etc.), or by doing it to ourselves.  Why do we sabotage ourselves or allow ourselves to be sabotaged? 

I am the absolute WORST self sabotager I know.  It's as if I think I'm undeserving of reaching my goals, so I sabotage myself just as I reach a new low, fit into a smaller size jeans, feel like I look good in the mirror, etc. etc. etc.!  So why do I {and most others} do this?  Because self sabotage is a destructive behavior that prevents one from accomplishing their goals, it's definitely something that needs addressing.  The most frustrating thing about it is that the one who is affected knows in the reasoning part of their mind that they need to make changes.  Their realistic self can say, "this is totally disgusting & unhealthy behavior" while the emotional & self sabotaging self says, "Who cares!" 

I recently asked on my You Fit Forever facebook page for other's experiences with sabotage.  I received a response from a friend that is similar to a behavior that I display often.  She said that occasionally she will eat something she perceives as bad {when in reality it may just be a small side step from her healthy eating regime} and then she feels like her whole day {and sometimes week} is shot...  Why exercise when the day is already screwed up.  Why waste healthy foods on a day that's already going downhill.  Then she proceeds to continue sabotaging herself & her efforts toward health for the rest of the day.  Totally something I do.  I'm such an all or nothing personality {yes, I realize this has to change to be truly successful} that if I cheat/mess up/eat something not on program early in the day, I often fail the rest of the day. 

I was reading up on self sabotage and came across this passage that spoke loudly to me:
"You will never overcome self sabotage if you cannot be honest with yourself about why you are doing it.  What is keeping you from focusing on your own health?  What keeps you from loving yourself enough to make YOU a priority?"
Powerful, isn't it?  In my mind I thought I was making me a priority because I was putting time & efforts into being healthier.  But by self sabotaging, I'm making it a selfish journey-one that I'll never have true & lasting success with-instead of a confidence building experience that will stretch me into a better person in every aspect of my life. 

I've been pretty good at overcoming other people's attempts-known or unknown on their parts-at sabotaging me.  Now I'm focusing on overcoming my own tendency to do this.  A couple helpful things I've found are the following:
1. Talk it out.  For the longest time I would avoid talking about my tendencies to cheat myself.  I wanted others to see me as invincible to some degree & I got away with it for the most part.  In fact, I never even talked to my husband about it and he thought I was the strongest person ever in that realm...never tempted.  Finally, I vented to him and guess what?  It helped.  A lot.  For example:  the other day we received some stressful news in regard to our business.  Not a huge deal, but one of those crazy things that comes at the wost & most unexpected times.  We were both running on high stress because of it & although we weren't irritated at each other, we were anxious to get the issue resolved and both felt the tension in the house.  I panicked & just snapped when I was alone in the kitchen.  I ate three mini brown sugar muffins that I'd made the day before for some friends.  What?  I immediately began thinking in self sabotaging terms and thought my whole day was shot & I should just keep eating to feel better.  Instead we got the problem resolved and felt the mood lighten up considerably.  I told my husband what I'd done and he said, "Okay.  So you ate three mini muffins.  You didn't 'go off the program.'  You just ate three mini muffins.  Just keep going like you normally would."  That was so empowering to think that yeah, I ate something I usually wouldn't while on the 5&1 plan.  So what?!  The growth comes from realizing that & moving on without binging, beating myself up, or continuing the sabotaging behavior. 
2. Setting mini goals.  This is huge for me.  I used to set large & lofty goals.  This is great & highly encouraged.  Now though, I also set mini goals.  Usually on a weekly scale, but sometimes day to day.  Something like, "Get 150 ounces of water every day this week before you can have any diet soda," or "Exercise five days this week for 25 minutes-try upping the intensity each time."  It becomes more like a competition with myself & I'm much more driven to reach these mini goals because they are close to me.  Right now.  Sometimes it's hard to make positive & healthy changes because eating a cheeseburger won't necessarily have a negative effect on us right now...and neither with running three miles or choosing a healthier food option.  But long term, those daily healthy choices really add up & we can become our optimally healthy the mini goals help me achieve those far out goals in a much more manageable way for me. 

Do you find yourself sabotaging or allowing others to sabotage your efforts?  I encourage you to dig deep inside yourself and find the real issues of what is going on.  Figure it out, write it down, and own it.  Start making an effort to change those negative behaviors so you can find positive results & finally free yourself to reach your goals.  I'm rooting for you & would love to hear about your experiences {}.

Have a happy & healthy Holiday!


  1. This is such a great post Karli, it hit me in so many ways. I was going to ask how I am supposed to figure out what is really going on, and then I realized what it is. Your words are always so encouraging and motivating. Thanks for sharing your journey and tips.

  2. Thanks for the helps Karli... keep up the good work!!!