Beware your inner Saboteur: he’s that little bugger who will pull your own rug out, just as you take your final step of the victory lap.
It doesn’t make sense, right? The stunning Super Model who has the world in the palm of her hand while she destroys herself with bulimia and a string of abusive boyfriends. The entrepreneur who throws away millions in a reckless wager in Vegas.
How about the recovering alcoholic with 20 years sobriety under his belt who relapses at his 20 year high school reunion?
They all have one thing in common… sabotage!
The origin of the word comes from ‘sabot‘, a 17th Century french shoe worn by peasants who would throw them into the gears of machines to willfully destroy them. Sounds like a Provincial version of throwing the toys out of the pram!
Of course, we’ve become more discreet in our destruction these days: Failed diets, blowing the retirement money, playing hooky, flirting with the waitress in front of the wife or rejecting the only partner who could actually make a commitment! These are all classic maneuvers of our hidden inner Saboteur.
The intention… to convince us we just don’t deserve.
For all the strife and angst we agonize over, sometimes we’d rather pitifully hold on to our familiar failings than risk braving change and accomplishment (See Fear of Success) . But what about those of us who are willing to compete for our success… why might we also ‘shoot ourselves in the foot?’
Quite simply, sabotage is a mechanism we employ to keep from crossing the finish line.
Like avoiding the completion of a gripping novel or the anti-climactic end to a wedding party, we just want more! What better way to prolong the vacation than last-minute packing and missing the plane? Genius in its unconscious inception but not the most direct approach to avoid going back to work.
So close and yet, so far.
You’ve probably heard the classic one about the wild stag night, where the promise of a committed relationship is often destroyed by the Saboteur’s need to experience a few more nights of bachelorhood!
Are we aware of this self-destructive mechanism within us? Can we do anything to stop ourselves from sabotage, despite our fully recognizing the negative consequences?
That’s up to you… What are you willing to give up?
No more escape routes or ‘extenuating circumstances’. No caveats, no grace periods, learning curves or ignorance of the law. Not another scapegoat or naïve bystander. No blind spots, black-outs or dissociating.
None of these slogans will work any longer: I can’t believe that came out of my mouth! You only hurt the ones you love! What was I thinking? I can’t help myself. Do as I say, not as I do. And the best… I said I’m sorry!
If you can give up all of these justifications for sabotage, you might just conquer self-defeat.
After all, who else is running your show?
Beware The Saboteur by Jamie Greene is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 United States License.