HOW TO MAP YOUR SELF-SABOTAGE AND UNCOVER MASSIVE BLINDSPOTS SO YOU CAN STOP KEEPING YOURSELF SICK
Sometimes when we have a problem, such a health issue, we’re stuck because we don’t know what to do to get ourself better.
Maybe we don’t really know what we should be eating. Or we don’t know if acupuncture would be helpful or cold baths are trick? Should we be meditating? And if so, how do we do it?
These are called “technical challenges.” A technical challenge can be solved by getting good information and learning how to do something.
But there’s another kind of challenge. Let’s say you have a problem - autoimmunity, chronic fatigue, high cholesterol, mood swings, poor focus - and you know what to do. You’re on a plan. You know where to focus. And you know, if you did certain things, you would feel better and be healthier.
But you don’t do those things.
You eat the sugar. You allow yourself to run out of herbs that help you. You stay up late even though you know going to bed on time would make your symptoms go away. You feel emotionally strung out but you keep taking on more and more work or social obligations.
What the heck, man?
This type of problem, where you know what to do but you don’t do it, is called an “adaptive challenge.” It requires, not more information, not another diet book or YouTube rabbit hole trip, but that you evolve your level of consciousness to become aware of your beliefs that are driving the behavior.
In this video, I guide you through a process to become aware of your unconscious drivers to your behaviors that keep you sick and stuck. I encourage you to get out a pen and paper and follow along. I’ll also write out the steps here so you can use them for reference.
1) What do you want to do better? That if you did it, it would solve your problem and help you reach your goal? Some examples are:
- Go to bed earlier
- Prioritize and be consistent with my self care
- Stop addictive behaviors
You can make a list of goals but I encourage you to choose one to work on that holds the most charge for you and would mean the most to you.
2) What do you do or not do that’s the opposite of this goal?
- You want to lose weight but you eat sugar and you don’t meal plan
- You want to make more time for self-care but you never say no to your kids or ask for help or leave work on time
- You want to go to bed earlier but you stay up late Doom scrolling or watching Netflix
Make a list of as many things as you can that are the opposite of the thing you want to do better
3) The Worry Box: what are you worried or afraid would happen if you didn’t do the actions in step 2? Or you did do the things you don’t do?
4) Looking at your worries, what are you committed to?
- If I’m worried that if I don’t have my phone on me, that I won’t reachable in case someone close to me needs me → I’m committed to being reachable
- If I’m worried that if I lose weight, I’ll get unwanted attention from men → I’m committed to avoiding unwanted attention from men
- If I’m worried that if I say no to my kid, they’ll think I don’t care about them → I’m committed to making sure that my kid feel cared for
Once we become aware of our commitments, we can see why we do the things we do that work against our goals.
5) Looking at our commitments, what do they tell us about our core beliefs?
- I’m committed to being reachable → If I’m not reachable, something very bad will happen and it’ll be my fault
- I’m committed to avoiding unwanted attention from men → I will get badly hurt if men find me attractive
- I’m committed to making sure that my kids feel cared for → If I say no or put my needs before my kids, I’ll damage our relationship
It can be helpful to visualize the process in a table like this.
2) What I’m doing or not doing to sabotage it
3) Worries and fears if I don’t do the things in step 2
4) My commitments
5) My beliefs
Once you have a Self Sabotage Map that’s compelling and makes you think: “holy shit!” then you’re ready for the next phase: designing and performing experiments to test your beliefs.
This process can take a couple months to execute but when done successfully you will have become aware of and evolved out of the beliefs that keep doing things that keep yourself sick and stuck.