Success or Failure: The Choice is Yours
Did you know know that you are the sole author of your life? Did you also know that success or failure is a choice? Choosing success over failure requires a focus on personal development. When you look at success or failure as a choice, suddenly you become empowered to choose success over failure.
The key to success is to understand that avoidance behavior is a barrier to success.
Before you can choose success over failure, and enter the realm of personal development, means it’s important to start with where you are right now and find out what is tripping you up, blocking your progress, and uncovering where you might be stuck, the barriers to success.
Success or Failure Starts With Self-Sabotage
Self Sabotage is your go-to strategy when you’re feeling stuck, which leads you to avoid discomfort. Self Sabotage can affect any area of your life from health and wellness, personal relationships, your work, and even your business if you are an entrepreneur.
While a little avoidance behavior can be good when you’re feeling overwhelmed, experiencing burnout, or need to replenish your energy stores, it when self-sabotaging behavior becomes the norm, not the exception that you start to experience repeated failure.
What are Self Sabotaging Behaviors?
The common symptoms of self-sabotaging behaviors include:
- Making excuses for not taking action or taking responsibility for your life
- Perfectionism – paralysis by analysis
- Listening to negative self-talk
- Constantly seeking approval from others
- Poor time management
- Not placing any importance on self-care
When you engage in avoidance behavior, you are choosing failure over success. Self Sabotaging drains your spiritual, mental, emotional, and physical well being. It can affect any area of your life. The good news is, self-sabotaging behavior is not your fault and you can change your behavior which is the primary key to success.
How Self Sabotaging Works?
You tell yourself you must go to the gym. Instead, you sit on the couch and watch Netflix because it feels better. Before you know it, you haven’t gone to the gym for days, which turn into weeks then months. The guilt sets in and unhelpful self-sabotaging thoughts take over.
You know you should make that sales call to grow your business. Instead, you do something else that feels like more fun than dealing with another rejection. Before you know it, you haven’t made the sales calls you know you should and sales begin to slide. Before long you become desperate because you aren’t getting the results you need and your livelihood is at risk.
You tell yourself one day you will become an entrepreneur and start that business you always wanted. But someday never comes and your dreams of becoming an entrepreneur become nothing but a distant dream.
You devote yourself to work and climbing the corporate ladder neglecting other parts of your life. You put work before anything else, your relationships suffer and before long you find yourself suffering from burnout. What’s worse you didn’t get the recognition you so craved or the promotion you desperately wanted in spite of grinding yourself into the ground.
You tell yourself tomorrow, but tomorrow never comes. You tell yourself someday, but someday never comes. Someday is not a day of the week.
Self Sabotage and Procrastination are Two Sides of a Coin
Poor motivation and self-sabotage usually begin with a trigger and that trigger is always painful thoughts. “ I don’t really want to go to the gym, it is painful to get started (therefore you avoid it). I don’t really want to make that sales call – rejection is painful. I don’t really want to start my own business, what if I fail? Failure can be painful. If I don’t put in the hours I won’t get promoted. It is painful not being recognized for my worth.” And so it goes.
With discomfort comes painful feelings; therefore, you choose failure and defeat over success because you want to avoid the pain. By thinking you will do it tomorrow or someday, you release yourself from commitment and do nothing instead. Procrastination is silently infiltrating your brain and the most common of all self-sabotaging strategies and the most seductive of all.
This avoidance strategy of self-sabotage only works for a short period of time. Initially, you feel relief, but then comes the guilt, the overwhelm, and feelings of defeat.
Failing is Not Your Fault
Success or failure is not your fault. Initially, when you feel the relief of avoidance behavior, the brain releases a neurochemical called dopamine. Dopamine wants you to repeat behaviors that reward you with a feeling of success and satisfaction. This is unhelpful for you find the brain will continue to release dopamine as it motivates you to repeat avoidance behavior; therefore, you continue to self-sabotage.
As a result, you stay in a cycle of avoidance behavior. As the cycle keeps repeating itself, it difficult to get off the avoidance roundabout and stops you from moving through the discomfort. Your brain uses biology to repeat behaviors that aren’t helpful and prevent you from achieving your goals. The more the brain releases dopamine to reward procrastination, it becomes ingrained into your identity. This causes you to reaffirm the belief you have in yourself that you aren’t healthy; you are a failure; you have no motivation. Therefore you continue to act in a way that reaffirms this belief creating unhelpful habits. The good news is – you can choose success over failure.
Choosing Success or Failure
Once you understand how the cycle of self-sabotaging behaviors, you can turn your thoughts to choosing success instead. This requires a transformation change process and doesn’t happen overnight. It begins with your vision and values.
To bring about transformational change, it’s essential to see yourself differently in the future. See yourself as the person you want to become and the values you wish to live by, not as you are now.
When you procrastinate and fail to go, to the gym, you see yourself as being unfit and unhealthy. If you are a parent, is this the example you want to set for your children? A parent who values health and wellness will go to the gym to set an example for their children. By living these values you will go, to the gym and work out and set the example of a parent who cares about health and wellness. Success or failure becomes a choice.
When you overwork yourself and neglect your personal relationships and self-care, what values are you espousing? One where relationships don’t matter, where you don’t matter? When you see yourself in the future managing a balance between your work and personal life you then start to value the importance of looking after relationships. Therefore you set goals for yourself and embark on a journey of self-discovery and personal development. Success or failure becomes a choice.
When you trust yourself to start that business, you always wanted to start; you begin to see yourself as a successful entrepreneur instead of a wannabe. You begin to value business success and what is required to turn failure into success. It becomes a choice and an investment in your future.
Transformational Change is Hard
Making the transition and choosing success over failure requires a different mindset and it’s hard to do alone. This means being gentle with yourself as you got through this change.
The mountain you see before you is not as hard to climb as you think but it is the pebble in your shoe that holds you back. A life coach or business coach sits on top of the mountain and they see things differently from you. They see you at the top of that mountain and their role is to believe in you and guide you up the mountain until you can climb it for yourself. They give you the resources to remove the pebble in your shoe that is holding you back.
Make no mistake; transformational change is hard. You take one step forward, another sideways, and at times, a step backward. Success is never a straight line, it is always a squiggle. That is because, for many years, the dopamine in your brain has been rewarding avoidance behavior. As you work through change, the brain will automatically default to old habits and the neural pathways that took years to form. These pathways don’t magically disappear overnight; it takes time to build new neural pathways and rid yourself of unhelpful habits.
When you choose success over failure and commit to change, new neural pathways build upon each other until such time as they become stronger than your old patterns of behavior.
When you say things like, “I’m hopeless at this! I tried before, and it didn’t work. It’s no good – what’s the point of even trying?” It’s your brain telling you over and over again it doesn’t like change. The dopamine kicks in again, trying to avoid discomfort. When you tell yourself – “I am a winner in every way right now. I achieve all the goals I set myself. I am successful in all that I do!” New neural pathways begin to form whether you initially believe yourself or not. The more you subscribe to positive affirmation, the stronger your “new” neural pathways become stronger fading out the old pathways of self-sabotaging behavior.
It is hard to keep yourself on track as you build new neural pathways. It takes time. A life coach and a business coach holds the belief for you until you develop it for yourself. They keep you on track when you are tempted to settle back into the patterns of limiting beliefs and avoidance behavior. The good news is once you build your self-belief and success thoughts become your default mechanism, you don’t need a life coach or business coach anymore.
The Key to Success
The secret to success if looking for transformational change is to look for the patterns of behavior that lead to self-sabotage. This self-awareness stops the negative thoughts that will inevitably creep back into your psyche. Thoughts like; “I’m not good enough. I tried that once and it didn’t work. It’s too late for me to change.”
When you hold onto limiting belief and settle into a habit of avoidance behavior, you sell yourself short and you certainly won’t develop your potential.
On a Final Note
Learn how the Strategez for Success Coaching Model helps you master a life of Success. With the help of a life coach, or business coach, you will easily fast track your way to a successful life with no barriers.
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