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Top 30 Self-Sabotage Quotes

Self-Sabotage Quotes

This post contains some of the best self-sabotage quotes.

What Is Self-Sabotage?

Self-sabotage is the act of standing in your own way and hurting yourself.

It could take the form of preventing yourself from moving forward from the past or achieving what you want in life (e.g. getting a promotion, finding a romantic relationship, losing weight, etc.).

Ways we self-sabotage may include:

  • Acting passive-aggressive
  • Attacking others or getting angry to hide shame
  • Avoiding conflict
  • Being a perfectionist
  • Being impulsive
  • Being overly controlling
  • Being sarcastic
  • Blaming
  • Bullying others
  • Feeling as if you have no needs
  • Giving too much or too little
  • Overspending
  • Overworking
  • People-pleasing and changing yourself for someone else’s approval
  • Playing the victim
  • Pushing people away
  • Seeking attention
  • Self-harming to soothe yourself
  • Self-loathing
  • Using alcohol, drugs, food, or other substances to cope
  • Withdrawing

Self-Sabotage Quotes

1. “What is self-sabotage? The answer probably depends on whom you ask. If we look at Webster’s definition of sabotage, it is “an act or process tending to hamper or hurt.” Now think about that behavior being something you do to yourself, and you have a good idea of what I am talking about here. Urban Dictionary defines self-sabotaging as “one who keeps screwing things up for themselves. Usually not on purpose.”” – Dr. Candice Seti

2. “I like to think of self-sabotage as simply standing in your own way. In other words, you are blocking yourself from moving forward from the past or achieving whatever it is you want to do in life—finding a romantic relationship, getting a promotion, losing weight, traveling, or doing anything else that you find worth pursuing.” – Dr. Candice Seti

3. “Self-sabotage is when we say we want something and then go about making sure it doesn’t happen.” —Alyce Cornyn-Selby

4. “Self-abandonment, the emotional root of self-sabotage.” – Susan Anderson

5. “This is sabotage committed by us, against ourselves, and it can subvert just about everything good in our lives.” – Gary John Bishop

6. “Once you see self-sabotage for what it really is, you can’t un-see it. It’s at home. It’s at work. It prevents people from finding true satisfaction in their lives.” – Dr. Candice Seti

Related: Inner Teenager Healing: 14 Proven Exercises to Heal Your Inner Teenager

7. “Sabotage isn’t apparently committed by an “enemy agent”—or is it? Maybe the enemy agent is you yourself.” – Gary John Bishop

8. “Self-sabotage goes hand in hand with most of the goals people have in their lives, from their careers to their relationships and everything in between.” – Dr. Candice Seti

9. “Self-sabotage occurs when your drive to reduce threat is higher than your drive to attain rewards, and it’s all tied into the approach-avoidance conflict.” – Dr. Judy Ho

10. “In addressing self-sabotage, many experts focus primarily on symptom relief. But teaching people how to save money or lose weight doesn’t address the powerful component of our personalities that acts out in spite of our best intentions.” – Susan Anderson

11. “We really do sabotage ourselves with the dark soundtrack we have looping over and over in our minds. Whenever I hear this negative self – talk from clients, I say, “ You must turn off the horrific noise going on in your head. ”” – Sean Stephenson

12. “Think about the times when you argue over nothing, hold onto grudges too long, hide or lie about your emotions, judge yourself or others too harshly, or just don’t call your mom or dad or friends as much as you should. Surely that’s not self-sabotage?” – Gary John Bishop

13. “We can agree that it sounds like a silly thing to do, but we all do it!” – Dr. Candice Seti

Related: Top 21 Healing Journal Prompts To Support Your Healing Journey

14. “Some of us self-sabotage more frequently than others, and some of us sabotage ourselves in a way that is more debilitating, but we all do it.” – Dr. Candice Seti

15. “We become disconnected from the people we care about. And we feel justified. Oh boy, are we justified. There’s nothing quite so damaging as the human desire to be right. How can that NOT be an act of self-sabotage?” – Gary John Bishop

Boundaries With Yourself Look Like - Self-Sabotage Quotes

16. “With regard to our health, self-sabotage can manifest itself in the ways we eat all the wrong stuff at all the wrong times, how we put off our exercise plans or use the excuse of getting caught up in the mundane details of our daily lives to explain our lack of action. We might give ourselves excuses to have “just one” cigarette or glass of wine or slice of cheesecake (which, of course, turns into more), skip doctor’s visits and checkups, or just not pay enough attention to our body and what it’s telling us.” – Gary John Bishop

17. “Telling yourself the truth is rarely easy, but it’s a surefire way to free yourself from your own subconscious self-sabotage trap. What makes self-reflection challenging is that you’re both the con artist and the one being conned.” – Gary John Bishop

18. “Self-sabotage isn’t always the big, extreme things we do to screw up our lives.” – Gary John Bishop

19. “Self-sabotage can also lead to very destructive behaviors. It shatters marriages, fractures families, turns people to hard drugs, alcohol, gambling and sex addictions, infidelity, and all kinds of toxic behaviors that trash an otherwise decent life.” – Gary John Bishop

Related: How To Break Generational Trauma? 5 Steps To Release Trauma & End Self-Sabotage

20. “Self-sabotage compounds itself and gets stronger and stronger if we don’t stop it in its tracks and push it away.” – Dr. Candice Seti

21. “Within the worlds of self-sabotage, we hold ourselves back in many different ways and create many different outcomes for ourselves.” – Dr. Candice Seti

22. “Over time, self-sabotage zaps our motivation and drive. When we fail time and again to achieve our goals, but can’t identify why, we become frustrated, defeated, and stop trying. If you believe you won’t get what you want, why bother making an effort?” – Dr. Judy Ho

23. “Resistance by definition is self-sabotage.” —Steven Pressfield

24. “Self-sabotage doesn’t always look like avoiding the things that will get you where you want to go. Some self-saboteurs, instead of thinking their way out of things, putting something off, or looking at their future in a negative light, can actively go out of their way to remove positive things from their life.” – Dr. Candice Seti

25. “Control Freaks tend to overpower those around them, and they don’t like to put themselves at risk. This type of self-sabotage is very similar to that of The Avoider in that it reinforces anxieties and holds you back from positive things.” – Dr. Candice Seti

26. “Self-sabotage often takes the opposite approach, piling on heaps of negative actions or thoughts that cheat you out of reaching your goals. Ultimately, this approach lowers your view of yourself in a way similar to that of the avoidant types of self-sabotage—you reinforce the idea that you aren’t worthy of getting what you want, which stops you from trying.” – Dr. Candice Seti

27. “Self-sabotage can make every single part of your life fall below what you’re capable of, meaning you’ll often find yourself feeling unsatisfied. In some cases, you can get stuck in cycles that actively destroy your life. Your overall happiness will suffer if you don’t acknowledge your self-sabotage and end it before it gets out of control.” – Dr. Candice Seti

28. “Many addictions start as selfsabotage before developing into an even bigger problem. The Procrastinator can use addictive behaviors to push off whatever needs to be done; the Control Freak might use food to make them feel better and give them a sense of control over their own lives.” – Dr. Candice Seti

29. “Self-sabotage is rooted in our thinking. If you look back through all the different types of self-sabotage, they are all about the ways we think, the ways we integrate information, and the ways we process sensory information.” – Dr. Candice Seti

30. “Because self-sabotage is rooted in our thinking and causes us to stand in our own way, it almost always involves distortions of the truth—a concept called cognitive distortions.” – Dr. Candice Seti

Related: How To Step Out Of Denial? Top 10 Steps To Overcome Denial When The Truth Is Heartbreaking

Self Sabotage Worksheets