Many clients come to me when they find that, despite really wanting a particular outcome, they keep sabotaging their attempts.
In fact, self-sabotage seems more common than sabotage by others – and is more frustrating to people as it seems so illogical.
One method I use to find out what’s at the bottom of this behaviour is a Values Elicitation exercise. The purpose of this is to identify a person’s core values. Most people assume that they know their own values, but this exercise often brings up surprises and insights for the client - not only do they identify the values influencing their behaviours, thoughts and decisions, it also identifies the current order of priority.
Why is this relevant to the problem of self-sabotage? Well, often it turns out that a person has some values which clash and are, effectively, pulling the person in opposite directions.
A common example is a person who has a value related to being seen to work hard. Such a person might have a belief that they should work long hours and be seen to be doing so. The same person might also have strong values around being a present member of their family – requiring them to be present as a parent, sibling or child. A person with this combination might feel torn about being at home and being at work and will find that goals in either area get thwarted by their own sub-conscious behaviours.
Another common area for clashes occurs when a person believes keeping others happy is important, yet also values their independence and freedom. Such people often find that they sabotage personal dreams if someone in their lives is perceived to express disapproval in any way.
Identifying these clashes in values enables you to examine your drivers and behaviours with conscious perspective – a first step towards identifying which values are really important, which are less so and also whether any are based on limiting beliefs. From there it becomes possible to identify ways that all real core values can be met without disrupting progress towards the success you want and so you can say goodbye to your worst saboteur – you!
The Values Elicitation exercise is a really important tool in coaching and I see it leading to transformational changes in the client's progress towards their goals. If you’d like to book a coaching programme with me, or just a single session to complete a Values Elicitation exercise and analysis, contact me to arrange.