Are You Suffering Unnecessarily? – 20 Ways You Are Self Sabotaging Your Happiness

suffering is optional


Can We Stop With the Self-Sabotage Already?

20 Subtle Ways You Commit Self-Sabotage Without Knowing It And How to stop it

You Create Your own Reality

Nothing has meaning alone. We create meaning and we bring it to life. We create stories and narratives to make sense of the world. We create words to describe our experience. We create happiness and suffering. We create hope and doubt. We create self-love and self-hatred. We create success and failure. We create ourselves.

As human beings, we truly love overcomplicating things. We’re looking for extreme highs and trying to avoid extreme lows. But what we forget about, is this moment of pause. The moment of letting go. We are afraid of being in the present moment without overthinking and creating meanings. We are afraid of silence. We are afraid of being ourselves. But this fear melts away when you stop resisting the present moment. So stop for a moment. Take a pause. Breathe. Stop overtaking. Just be. Don’t let these meaning you constantly create to consume you. Just be. Simplicity is the key to a meaningful life. 

"I am convinced that life is 10% what happens to me and 90% of how I react to it. And so it is with you... we are in charge of our Attitudes."

So what reality are you creating for yourself? Are you using your energy to create a plesant life experience or you’re self-sabotaging your happiness and wellbeing? Are you using your potential to observe and respond to life situations or you just have an emotional reaction to what is happening at this very moment? I’m sure you know the answers. 

So tell, we do you want to stop self-sabotating your happiness and wellbeing? If your answer is “yes”, you’ve came to the right place because I’m about to reveal 20 self-sabotating habits I was guilty of for most of my life without even realizing it. Throughout the years, I learned to overcome most of them and now I want to share with you what I discovered. 

“Realize deeply that the present moment is all you have. Make the NOW the primary focus of your life.”

20 Self-Sabotaging Habits you Need to Quit

“The primary cause of unhappiness is never the situation but your thoughts about it.”

thoughts create reality

1. Underestimating the Power of Your Thoughts

Reality is truly subjective because we create it with the power of our thoughts. What we think or feel manifests in real-life events. Which means that if you think in negative terms you will most probably get negative results. It happens because negative thoughts create negative energy that attracts negative events. 

Whereas if you intentionally focus your mental energy on thinking in positive terms you will attract positive things, people, event and experiences into your life. How amazing is that? 

Sounds like magic but it’s science or more precisely quantum physics. Of course, I am not saying that you can control everything in life with the power of your thoughts because some things just happen without your input. But you can always choose how to respond to things you cannot control. I guess that’s fair enough.

“All negativity is caused by an accumulation of psychological time and denial of the present. Unease, anxiety, tension, stress, worry - all forms of fear - are caused by too much future, and not enough presence. Guilt, regret, resentment, grievances, sadness, bitterness, and all forms of nonforgiveness are caused by too much past, and not enough presence.”

create space for the new

2. Not Living in the Present Moment

So often times it happens that we live in psychological time constantly thinking about the past and worrying about the future instead of focusing on the present moment. But the truth is that there is no past and no future. All we have is now. All we have is the present moment.

So don’t ruin the authenticity of the present moment dwelling in the past, you don’t live there anymore and stop worrying about the things that haven’t happened yet. Accept the beauty of not knowing what happens next. 

Use the time to your advantage but be present. Learn important lessons from your past experience and plan for the future but avoid overthinking and over-scheduling because it will create excessive worrying and unnecessary suffering. Instead, focus on the present moment and start building foundations for your future self. 

Stop labeling people just because they're not like you.

3. Labelling People

Putting people into categories is something we all do because it helps us to feel safe and make sense of our world, but is that really useful? I highly doubt it. The truth is that labelling people gives us an illusion of feeling safe in an insanely chaotic world but at the same time it opens the door to too much misinterpretation. Not to mention how these broad labels and categories we love to put ourselves and others into to limits our worldview. So maybe it’s time to stop doing that? We really should stop labelling ourselves and other by some strange completely irrelevant societies terms and standards. We should be more open-minded and focused on what we can learn from each other.

stop labeling people

"I'm happy to report that my inner child is still ageless."

nurture your inner child

4. Not Nurturing Your Inner Child

Your inner child is an infinite source of creative potential, spontaneity, honesty, and joy in your life. For this reason alone, connecting with your inner child gives us this incredible opportunity to connect with our intuition, higher self and live a fulfilling and purposeful life. So, take your inner child by a hand, take a deep breathe and prepare yourself for a brand new chapter of your life. Something magical is about to happen…

A picture can speak a thousand words, but a thousand words can paint you a thousand pictures.

positive self-talk

5. Underestimating the Power of Your Words

We create our storytelling that directly affects our state of mind and personal well-being. This basically means that stories and narratives we make up to describe what we perceive through our five senses can trigger pleasant emotions like joy or happiness or unpleasant feelings like anger, fear or sadness. As pleasant emotions tend to do no harm even if they have nothing to do with the real situation (the present moment) the trouble starts when your dramatic storytelling causes negative emotions that create suffering that wasn’t even there at the beginning. Sounds crazy right? 

Fortunately, once we realize that our mental state is a result of the dramatic storytelling we can let it go, return to reality, accept it and appreciate it for what it is.

"Words are free. It's how you use them that may cost you."

6. Underestimating the Power of Self-Talk

Are you your harshest critic that keeps putting yourself down with negative self-talk and limiting self-beliefs? Just think about how you think about yourself and what words you use when you talk to yourself? Would you be happy if someone tells the same thing you tell yourself to the person you love the most? I don’t think so. So, stop putting yourself down. Stop the black and white thinking. The fact that you’ve made some poor choices and bad mistakes in your past do not mean that you’re a failure. If you want to succeed, own who you are. Own your mistakes and use them to your advantage. Your past is just an experience use it to your personal growth and self-development. Be proud of yourself and don’t forget to validate yourself every single time you achieve your goal even a small one. And never forget that words create your reality so pay attention of how to talk to yourself. Be kind to the person you will spend whole life with. 

black and white thinking

“Sometimes letting things go is an act of far greater power than defending or hanging on.”

learn to let go

7. Giving too many F*cks

Maybe your problem is not as big as you think? Maybe that comment some complete stranger made about you doesn’t really matter? Sh*t happens… a lot. People make sh*tty comments and behave in a sh*tty way, and that’s the fact. But sometimes the best way to deal with all of that stuff is not to deal with it at all. Some “important” things in life are actually not that important. But instead of just shaking off and move on you start over-analyzing and wasting all your mental energy on meaningless things. So be mindful. Be careful not to fall into the trap of overthinking and overanalyzing. Fix what you can fix. Change what you can change. Let go of the need to control everything. Just breathe. 

"True transformation occurs only when we can look at ourselves squarely and face our attachments and inner demons, free from the buzz of commercial distraction and false social realities. We have to retreat into our own cocoons and come face-to-face with who we are. We have to turn toward our own inner darkness. For only by abandoning its attachments and facing the darkness does the caterpillar's body begin to spread out and its light, beautiful wings begin to form."

8. Not Facing your Demons

Face your demons and they will stop chasing you. They like a poison that spreads right through the system any time you try to escape them. They linger inside us like ghostshaunting the corridors and deserted rooms… And the truth is that you will not get rid of them by denying their existence. Well, that would be great but unfortunately, it doesn’t really work like that. That would be just too easy. Mainly because our demons represent our deepest fears, doubts and insecurities buried deep below the surface. But if you don’t want to be under their rules anymore you need to face them first. And then… well, then you have to deal with the consequences. Why? Well, probably because freedom is not free you have to pay for it. We all have to pay for it. So as you can see the prize is worth this sacrifice. But wait, I will tell you a secret: the value of the currency indicates your strength. Which means that once you realize this you have the upper hand. So get your s*it together, stand up and fight. It’s time to face your fears.

always look people in the eyes

“Life isn't as serious as the mind makes it out to be.”

accept failure

9. Overcomplicating Your Life

People tend to overthink and over analyze every single aspect of their life without realizing that it only makes every situation much more complex than it ever needs to be. The truth is obsessive thinking and overanalyzing everything in detail is incredibly counterproductive, exhausting and a bit demoralizing. Not to mention that it does not resolve any problem. Of course, I’m not saying that you should not pay attention to details because there are some situations where it’s extremely important like for example signing a contract or taking a loan. But in most cases, you don’t have to over-analyze everything. So instead of overthinking your life take intentional action. Focus on a present moment and use it to your advantage.

Simplicity is the key to success.

"Like attracts like. Whatever the conscious mind thinks and believes. the subconscious identically creates."

10. Being Stuck in Negative Thinking Patterns

The glass can be half empty or half full. It depends only on you how you chose to look at things and live your life experience. Seeing the glass half empty will make your life even harder, more complex and definitely less satisfying. So train your brain to be more positive, start looking at problems as opportunities and turn your negative energy into a more positive one.

negative thinking patterns

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The important thing is not to stop questioning. Curiosity has its own reason for existing. One cannot help but be in awe when he contemplates the mysteries of eternity, of life, of the marvelous structure of reality. It is enough if one tries merely to comprehend a little of this mystery every day.

keep pushing forward

11. Not Questioning Everything

Cultivate a Beginner’s Mind. Practice being curious, be open to new experience, ask questions, observe, take notes and fuel your desire for new information. Every day you have an incredible opportunity to learn something new and use it to fuel your personal growth. Curiosity is the basis of true learning and self-improvement.

“Gratitude is a powerful catalyst for happiness. It's the spark that lights a fire of joy in your soul.”

12. Not being grateful

Have you ever thought that the things you take for granted are the things others are praying for? We don’t appreciate things that deserve our gratitude the most. We just assume that if we have something, know somebody or experience a certain feeling it will last forever. But things change because the universe has always its plan, and this plan is always in motion. So be thankful for every second of life and start practicing gratitude on a daily basis. 


"Have the courage to follow your heart and intuition. They somehow know what you truly want to become."

listen to your intuition

13. Ignoring your Intuition

Intuition is your inner wisdom, your instinctive awareness, your “gut feeling” that when it’s heard and accepted becomes your internal guidance system. The answers to your questions are within you but to be able to find them you have to calm your anxious mind and listen to your inner voice first. And most importantly if it feels like a “no” it’s a “no” and when it feels like a “yes” go for it!

“Ego is no more than this: identification with form, which primarily means thought forms.”

14. Let Your Ego To Control Your Life

We all fall in the ego trap sometimes especially when we feel the need to be noticed, heard as perceived as special and better than the others. It’s important to notice this moment and regain control over your life again. Be grateful for what you have, pay attention to your self-improvement, stop being jealous of others and find your true self. You don’t have to win an argument to prove you’re right. Don’t let your ego to control your life and sabotage your happiness. Don’t wait for people to praise you. Be humble and do your thing.

face your fears

“Examine your beliefs and break free.”

self-limiting beliefs

15. Not giving yourself enough credit

Are you carrying around limiting beliefs about yourself that hold you back in life? Are you trying to reach your full potential but something is holding you back? Maybe you think that you are not good enough, smart enough or strong enough and these thoughts are making you even more insecure? 

Did you ever wonder where these beliefs come from?

Because I can assure you, that if you have these negative beliefs and opinions about yourself you did NOT create them by yourself. There was somebody else who did this, maybe you grew up in a dysfunctional family or was in a bad relationship. Whatever the reason is you have to understand that it is NOT your reality. All these self-limiting beliefs are false. Beliefs are NOT facts. Which means that you can change the way you think about yourself. You can overcome false and self-limiting beliefs and replace them with positive ones. All you have to do is to start working on your self-esteem and self-confidence. And remeber that it’s okay if change doesn’t happen right away. Accept that a permanent change is a slow process not an event. 


"Excuses will always be there for you, opportunity won't."

16. Looking for Excuses

Let’s be honest: We all play the victim card sometimes to achieve a specific goal without putting any effort. And as far as I don’t see anything wrong if this “victim game” is used as a little excuse or a momentary lapse of weakness from time to time in minor matters only, I do think that having a full-time victim mentality is an extremely self-destructive habit that keeps us stuck in blame, extreme pessimist and overwhelming negativity. That’s why you have to be careful not to fall into this trap of making up excuses every single time you feel vulnerable, insecure or just not in the mood. Trust me I know what I am talking about. I used to suffer from victim mentality for most of my life until I chose to assume responsibility and regain control of my life. So be careful with making excuses, because you really don’t want to pass for a truly miserable person who would rather drown in self-pity than find a solution to their problems. 

looking for excuses

“Some changes look negative on the surface but you will soon realize that space is being created in your life for something new to emerge.”

embrace chaos

17. Avoiding Chaos at all Costs

We tend to embrace order and avoid chaos at all costs. Why? Well, I’ve got an idea and here it is: I think we can all agree that while being able to predict and anticipate every single event and experience in our life would be easier, less anxious and very uncomplicated it would be also effortless, commonplace and just incredibly boring. Just think about this, if you have the ability to foretell what is going to happen tomorrow, next week, next month and next year you will deprive yourself of all the genuine pleasure and great joy of unexpectable opportunities that are waiting to be found. A predictable life would rob us of all the so bitter and so sweet secrets that we have yet to discover. Besides, what would be the point of living a life that would be so annoyingly planned out? Imagine that you have a choice: you can choose between a completely predictable life deprived of surprises, excitement, and adventures or wild, adventurous an inspiring life experience full of unexpected opportunities and breathtaking surprises. What would you choose? A dull, predictable life or riskier but at the same time more exciting lifestyle? Just ask yourself this question.

"Life is a series of natural and spontaneous changes. Don't resist them - that only creates sorrow. Let reality be reality. Let things flow naturally forward in whatever way they like."

18. Resist Changes

Life is like a kaleidoscope, everything changes, nothing stands still. Sometimes when something incredibly beautiful happens we try to write everything down or create a mental picture to keep track of time. But still the moment we’re living now will be gone in a flash. Just like a dream experience, whatever things you enjoy will become a memory. So instead of desperately trying to freeze an ideal moment in your life let yourself truly experience it without worrying about what happens next. Don’t resist changes because it will only create pain and sorrow. Instead accept that everything flows, embrace change and take advantage of the current situation.

embrace changes

“Life isn't as serious as the mind makes it out to be.”

don't take yourself so seriously

19.Taking Yourself too Seriously

Life is too short to take everything so seriously. Besides being always so serious about anything and everything harms your health and inner peace. It’s time to realize that no one is perfect as humans and we all make mistakes in life. So stop beating yourself up for past mistakes and awkward moments. Instead, make a list of the most embarrassing moments in your life, read it out loud and just laugh. You texted the wrong person, fall over in public, forgot someone’s name who you are in a conversation with, clogged a toilet in a home that isn’t yours, ripped your pants in public, had food in your teeth during a company meeting, came out of the toilet with toilet roll attached to your shoe… and so what? It happened to anyone! So instead of dying ashamed embrace the awkwardness and laugh at yourself. Humor is the key to success in your professional and personal life.

“Real change is difficult at the beginning, but gorgeous at the end. Change begins the moment you get the courage and step outside your comfort zone; change begins at the end of your comfort zone.”

20. Staying in Comfort Zone

Life constantly alters our plans and goals to give us a new perspective, different opportunities to fulfil our destiny. Sometimes not knowing what will happen is the best thing we are experiencing. Why? Because it forces us to get out of our comfort zone. And let me tell you something. Great things happen just outside the comfort zone. So get your act together and make a one-step outside.

comfort zone

"Perfection itself is imperfection."

20+1= 21

perfection does not exist

21. Pursuit of Perfection

Perfection is an illusion, a deeply flawed concept impossible in a real perfectly imperfect life. It’s a deception we keep telling ourselves because we are too afraid to accept the uncertainty of life and let go of the need to control anything and everything. So stop pursuing perfection and embrace the authenticity of the present moment.

Have you checked my FREE printable workbooks on self-care and prioritizing life? If not, you can DOWNLOAD your 2 FREE workbooks here, just CLICK on the photos!

Stay Positive

Be Mindful

And Stelf-Sabotating Your Happiness

xo Kate


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2 thoughts on “Are You Suffering Unnecessarily? – 20 Ways You Are Self Sabotaging Your Happiness

  1. You do a fantastic job of blending your personal experiences with advice to provide such helpful suggestions and thought-provoking points to consider. I think I’m guilty of a little (okay, a lot) of self-sabotage. And you’re right, a lot of the time we don’t realise we’re doing it. I think I realise I do it, but not necessary why, so it’s helpful to dig a little deeper because we likely uncover lots of things we hadn’t appreciated before, like feelings of not being worth it, self doubt, etc.

    I love no.4, I think we all need to nurture out inner child a little more! And giving too many f*cks, that’s something I blog about because that’s a big one for me, too! Really great way to use the quotes as well, big fan of quotes. Another fantastic post, Kate!!
    Caz xx

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Hey, I’m Kate. I create content about a holistic approach to a meaningful life. On this platform, you will find resources on reaching YOUR goalstime management,  personal growth, & living your best life. 

(particularly for procrastinators, self-doubters, and dreamers!)

If I am not here it’s because I’m enjoying my creamy cappuccino in one of my favorite coffee shops… 😎

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