People who get in the way of their own success without realizing it usually display these 8 subtle behaviors

We all dream of success, right?

We have these big plans, we set lofty goals, and we work like crazy to achieve them. But despite all the effort, sometimes it feels like we’re just working hard but not getting anywhere.

It’s a strange thing, really.

You’re doing everything you ‘should’ be doing, but still, success seems to elude you. It’s frustrating, disheartening even.

Sometimes, it’s not about what you’re doing, but what you’re not doing.

And surprisingly, the barriers to our success often aren’t external—they’re within us.

Here’s the kicker: most times, we don’t even realize that we are our own worst enemies.

We unknowingly sabotage our own chances of success with these subtle behaviors that appear harmless but have a significant impact.

This article is for those who feel stuck in their journey towards success. 

It’s about understanding these 8 subtle behaviors that are often overlooked but might be the very reason your success is still out of reach.

1) Overthinking everything

We’ve all heard the saying, ‘paralysis by analysis’, right?

Overthinking is a common trait among many of us, especially when it comes to our goals and aspirations. We want things to be perfect, we want to avoid making mistakes at all costs.

So, we think and think and think some more.

The problem is, while we’re busy overthinking, we’re not taking action.

We’re stuck in our heads, creating problems that aren’t there and magnifying ones that are.

It’s like we’ve built a wall around our success and we don’t even realize it.

We’re so focused on the what-ifs and the maybes that we forget to just do.

If you find yourself constantly overthinking your decisions, second-guessing every step you take towards your goals, then it might be time to take a step back and reassess. 

Overthinking could very well be the subtle behavior that’s keeping you from reaching your success.

2) Fear of failure

Ah, the dreaded fear of failure. I know that feeling all too well.

It’s like a shadow that follows me around every time I set a new goal or dream up a new project.

It whispers in my ear, filling my mind with doubts and worst-case scenarios.

What if I fail? What if everyone sees me fail? What if I’m just not good enough?

This fear, it’s crippling. It stops me dead in my tracks, making me second-guess my every move, or worse, not make any move at all.

The ironic thing is, by not taking action due to fear of failure, I’m failing by default.

I’m robbing myself of the opportunity to succeed, to grow, and to learn from my mistakes.

If you find yourself constantly held back by the fear of failure, know that you’re not alone.

But also know that this fear might be the very thing standing between you and your success.

3) Procrastination

I used to have this habit, back in the day, of always putting things off until the last minute.

I’d start a project with plenty of time to spare, but then I’d find myself getting distracted.

I’d convince myself that I had plenty of time to finish later. So, I’d push it off, again and again, until it was almost too late.

I told myself that I work better under pressure, that the adrenaline rush helped me produce my best work. But the reality was far from it.

In truth, my procrastination was a form of self-sabotage.

It was a way for me to avoid facing possible failure or criticism. If I didn’t try my best, then I could always blame the lack of time for any shortcomings in my work.

I realized later that this habit was holding me back from realizing my full potential.

It kept me from giving my all and from achieving the success I was capable of.

If you’ve got a habit of putting things off until the last minute, it might be worth examining why you do it. 

4) Neglecting self-care

Did you know that the way you treat yourself directly affects your productivity and success? It’s true.

When I was in the thick of my hustle, working long hours and burning the candle at both ends, I neglected to take care of myself.

I skipped meals, my sleep schedule was a mess, and I hardly had any time for exercise or relaxation.

I thought that by dedicating all my time and energy to my work, I’d be more successful.

But instead, I found myself feeling burnt out, stressed, and less productive.

That’s when I learned the importance of self-care. By taking the time to take care of my physical and mental health, I found that I was more focused, more productive, and more successful in my endeavors.

5) Not setting clear goals

In my early years of striving for success, I had a lot of dreams and ideas but no concrete plan.

I’d start one project, get distracted by a new idea, and then jump to another without completing the first one.

It was like trying to catch a bunch of butterflies without a net. My efforts were scattered, and I was getting nowhere.

Then I learned about the power of setting clear, achievable goals.

When I started to outline what I wanted to achieve and broke it down into smaller, manageable steps, things started to change. I had direction. I had focus. 

And most importantly, I started making real progress.

It might seem obvious, but not setting clear goals can be a major roadblock to success. If you’re finding yourself hopping from one thing to another without making substantial progress, it might be time to sit down and outline your goals.

It could be the game changer you’ve been waiting for.

6) Avoiding discomfort

I used to believe that success should come easy. If something felt hard or uncomfortable, I’d take it as a sign that it wasn’t meant to be.

But over time, I’ve come to understand that discomfort is an integral part of the journey towards success. It’s through challenges and difficulties that we grow and learn.

Avoiding discomfort meant I was avoiding opportunities to grow. I was staying in my comfort zone, where things were safe and predictable, but also stagnant.

If you find yourself shying away from challenges or difficult tasks, it might be worth reflecting on why that is. Could it be that you’re avoiding discomfort?

7) Not asking for help

I’m a bit of a stubborn soul. I used to think that asking for help was a sign of weakness, that it meant I wasn’t capable or competent enough.

So, I’d struggle on my own, exhausting myself trying to figure things out when someone else could have easily pointed me in the right direction.

But here’s the thing: no one achieves success alone. We all need support, guidance, and sometimes, a helping hand along the way.

If you’re constantly struggling on your own, refusing to ask for help even when you need it, it might be time to reassess. This could be one of those subtle behaviors that’s unknowingly sabotaging your path to success.

8) Not believing in yourself

I saved this one for last, but it’s arguably the most important.

I used to struggle a lot with self-doubt.

Even when I had done everything right, even when I was making progress, there was always this little voice in the back of my head whispering that I wasn’t good enough, that I didn’t deserve success.

That voice, that self-doubt, it’s a dream killer. It saps your motivation, your confidence, and your ability to persevere in the face of challenges.

Believing in yourself, truly believing that you can achieve your goals and that you deserve success, that’s crucial.

Wrapping it up

If you’ve found yourself nodding along to these points, don’t fret. The realization that you might be in your own way is the first step towards change.

These behaviors are not ingrained in stone. They’re simply patterns we’ve fallen into over time, and with awareness and intention, they can be changed.

Start by acknowledging these habits and patterns. Notice when you’re overthinking, procrastinating, or avoiding discomfort. Pay attention to how often you neglect self-care or fail to set clear goals.

From there, it’s all about taking small but consistent steps towards change. Maybe it’s asking for help more often, or setting aside time each day for self-care.

Perhaps it’s challenging yourself to step out of your comfort zone or setting clear, achievable goals.

This transformation won’t happen overnight, but remember: the journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step (Lao Tzu).

Each small action you take is a step towards breaking these self-sabotaging behaviors.

So be patient with yourself. Celebrate your progress, no matter how small. 

And remember, the path to success isn’t always straightforward.

Sometimes, it’s the detours and obstacles along the way that lead us to our greatest successes.

Feeling Adrift? Pinpointing Your Values Guides You Home

Do you sometimes question what really matters most in life? Feel unclear on the principles that should steer your decisions and path ahead?

It’s so easy to lose sight of our core values. Those essential truths that align our outer world with profound inner purpose.

That’s why life coach Jeanette Brown designed this simple yet illuminating values exercise. To help you define the 5 values most central to who you are.

In just a few minutes, this free download leads you to:

  • Discover what matters to you more than money or status
  • Clarify the ideals your choices should reflect
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With your values crystallized, you’ll move through the world with intention, confidence, and meaning.

Stop drifting and download the Free PDF to anchor yourself to purpose. Let your values direct you home.

 

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