Success Sabotage?

Mercer Match Blog Success Sabotage

5 Silent Habits of Success Sabotage

Perhaps calling it success sabotage is a bit harsh but if you’re like many of us, you’re your harshest critic. We’re at the front of the line when it comes to beating ourselves up, criticizing our mistakes, and calling ourselves stupid.

The fact is, there’s a huge difference between having high expectations and putting yourself under the kind of immense pressure that borders on being unrealistic. The latter creates thought patterns that are poisonous and slowly erode your chance of success.

Here are five “silent” mental habits that can easily be signs of success sabotage.

  1. Unfair Comparisons

It can be easy to convince yourself that everyone is doing so much better whenever you play the comparison game. Whether it’s by looking at other recent college graduates, or others in your office and people on your social media feeds, comparing yourself to other people is a toxic habit you need to discard immediately. Remember: everyone leads unique lives with different challenges and successes. Also, ask yourself how many people regularly broadcast their mistakes and bloopers? Quit focusing on others and start concentrating on reaching your potential.


  1. Holding on to your mistakes

On a list of universal truisms, you’ll find “Everyone Makes Mistakes.” It’s true: no one is perfect. By holding on to past slip-ups and misfortunes, you’re preventing yourself from moving forward. You’ll also hold yourself back by feeling that you’re simply not good enough. The time to let go of past mistakes is now.


  1. Doing too much

A strong work ethic is a trait that will carry you far. But being overworked and trying to do too much will cause you mental and physical anguish. Instead of saying ‘yes’ to everything, learn how to say ‘no.’ Taking on an excessive workload and over-committing yourself will leave you exhausted and take the enjoyment out of what you do — while and the things you used to enjoy will become burdens. Don’t let guilt pressure you into spreading yourself too thin.


  1. Failing to switch it off

The art of learning how to relax and let work go in your free time is one that will benefit you your entire life — both mentally and physically. Stop checking your work emails in the evening from home. Stop accepting client calls after-hours, unless necessary. Knowing how to “switch off” will pay off with more energy and a higher level of drive for your work.


  1. Making self-deprecating comments

Selling yourself short and making jokes at your expense may seem endearing to some but comes with quiet mental fallout that eventually erodes your confidence. Start taking yourself seriously and supporting your goals; others will follow suit.

Take a few minutes and ask yourself — Are your mental habits preventing you from being the best you can be? Are you committing success sabotage? If so, learn to let go of them and focus on your own unique potential and progress.

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