We all have self-destructive tendencies. There are so many reason we can come up with to talk ourselves out of doing something. We are often our own biggest enemy or critic. Before we can expect others to believe in us we must believe in ourselves. This article spoke to me in so many ways. Especially #4… reminded me of a conversation I had with a friend just today. I suggest you start with that one. I picked out a few that stood out to me. Read the article for the full list.

12 Destructive Habits You Need to Stop Right Now by Lolly Daskal

Most of us routinely underestimate our talents and skills–not deliberately, but because of self-deprecating habits. At the extreme, you can become your own worst enemy. But even a little bit of negativity toward yourself can slow you down and cause you to miss out on great opportunities. Ask yourself if you need to change any of these destructive habits:

1. You don’t believe in yourself. Self-talk is a strong force, whether it’s positive or negative. If you tell yourself “I’m not ready for that promotion” or “I could never be that disciplined” or “I don’t have the aptitude to be a boss”–if you routinely talk yourself out of your aspirations–you will not reach your potential.

2. You don’t own your unique self. It’s great to learn from those around you, but never think that what you have to offer is insignificant or that you need to copy someone else’s style or way of doing things. The things that make you uniquely you are what will make you stand out, so honor those things and own them. Mom was right: Just be yourself.

3. You care too much what other people think. Wanting to be liked and respected is basic human nature. But when you value other people’s thinking and opinions above your own, and change your behavior to reflect what you think others want to see, you’re doing harm to yourself. Nobody else is living your life, so don’t give away the power to guide it.

4. You surround yourself with negativity. You don’t have to look very hard to find people with issues–there’s always someone ready to cut down someone else’s success or dwell on the unfairness of a situation or workplace. Often what these people are masking is their own fear of failure, but allowing yourself to be exposed to their negativity will have a bad influence on you. Recognize the positive people in your life and choose your relationships carefully.


5. You don’t trust yourself. Whether your intuition comes from innate talent or years of experience (or both), it can work only if you have faith in it. That doesn’t mean that you don’t question or challenge your instincts–holding your gut feeling up to reality is an important part of discernment. But if you’re constantly second-guessing your own judgment, that’s a problem.

6. You don’t let yourself speak up. When you quiet your own voice, when you stop yourself from saying what you want to do or asking for what you need, your silence can be mistaken for ignorance or apathy–by others and even by yourself. Even if you feel overpowered, it’s important to say what’s on your mind.

7. You dismiss compliments. When you deflect compliments with a self-deprecating remark, you not only sell yourself short but challenge the judgment of the person complimenting you. Accepting compliments graciously doesn’t make you an egomaniac.