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How to Short-Circuit Self-Sabotage

02 Jun

Hello Belleruth,

I have been in college for quite some time. As an adult, I went back to school at a later age. I recently discovered I have PTSD and have been using your guided imagery for that with great success.

However, I have another problem. It seems as I get closer to graduating I get increasingly more self-sabotaging. So, do you have any guided imagery tracks that can help with self-sabotage? I mean preventing it! Thank you.

James D.

Dear James,

So glad the guided imagery is helping with the posttraumatic stress. And although it can be a challenge to deal with self-sabotage, it’s great that you’re conscious of what you’re doing and want to make a course correction.

I’m assuming that you’ve been to a counselor or therapist about this – just talking about
your various tools and tricks to trip yourself up, with a neutral, intelligent, nonjudgmental professional who has no axe to grind, can be a powerful check on your self-defeating behavior and enormously helpful.

That said, we don’t have any imagery specifically designed to short-circuit these self-undermining tendencies, but the Self-Confidence imagery might be really good here, because it has you imagining yourself in the desired situation (graduating? Being toasted and congratulated right at a post-graduation party? Engaged in meaningful work after graduation?), feeling comfortable, confident and at ease, just enjoying what you’re doing, smoothly and easily.  You can find it here.

Another good one might be Traci Stein's Procrastination or Self Esteem imagery, either of which contains important elements which address these issues.  Her superb work can be found here.

And Martha Howard has an excellent meditation called Keys to Your Highest Potential which would apply here as well.
 
The fact that you’ve responded really well to the guided imagery for traumatic stress is a great predictor of success with this kind of intervention. So I hope you give it a try for these self-sabotaging tendencies.  

Best of luck and please send us a graduation picture!  We’d love to make your experience one of our Inspiring Stories (with your permission, of course)!!

All best,
Belleruth

Belleruth Naparstek

Psychotherapist, author and guided imagery pioneer Belleruth Naparstek is the creator of the popular Health Journeys guided imagery audio series. Her latest book on imagery and posttraumatic stress, Invisible Heroes: Survivors of Trauma and How They Heal (Bantam Dell), won the Spirituality & Health Top 50 Books Award