On (self) Sabotage

(This post was originally written in early 2017 and just sat as a draft until this week)

Here is the theme song to this post:


I think the core of self sabotage comes from fear. This fear is mostly from our reptilian brain. Seth Godin talks about this here:


(This also applies to Shipping Software which I haven’t blogged about yet but I should warn people reading this that I will probably be talking more and more about code and code related things)

Now I have a lot of friends who “know” who they are. Therefore, if they know who they are, they don’t need to change how they act in certain situations. Or more precisely they use this as an excuse for why they can’t or won’t do something different than what they’ve done in the past. For example, someone who has trouble committing, well they shouldn’t go on that second date with that guy because it was way too strong a connection and in the past that’s just been too hard.

Now often time people are aware that they are doing this. But they don’t think they can change. Or more to the the point, they are scared of the change. Because this would be different. This would mean they are a different person than their current self image. Even if you want this and you say you want this. It’s scary because you don’t know what this new you could be. Who is someone who commits to relationships?  Who is someone who opens themselves up to others? Who is someone who ships software? Usually the answer is that its definitely not the current self.

Ultimately we know deeply that the other side of every fear is freedom. ~Mary Ferguson

I relate it somewhat to how you feel when you are in a state of depression. Often there is this feeling that you belong “here” there is this comfort in the feeling you have. A feeling of belonging, that you “deserve” this, that this is the true you.

Of course it’s all BS, and as soon as you climb a little bit out you can see it for what it is. But boy is it fun at times to think we are a twisted soul. I suspect this is why some of the things such as the law of attraction and visualization and etc work so well for some people. It’s because it helps them break out of this thinking of this is who I am. It gives them a reason or an excuse or rather a way to convince themselves that they can change.

Really we are nothing more than the sum of our actions. If I want to be a coder, I am one if I do code, that means that small decisions every day count. I’m currently trying to get in better shape. I can easily say “I’m not someone who exercises and eats well”, well bullshit because every few hours I need to make a decision and I’m deciding that I’m someone who eats pretty well and every few days I decide I’m someone who does an exercise video or go to kick boxing. or what have you. If you want to be someone who has loving relationships with trust, you just have to do it one step at a time. If you want to be in shape you have to do it one step at a time. If you want to be someone who, well you get the idea.

Thinking will not overcome fear but action will. ~W. Clement Stone

So let’s go and make whatever today’s step is on to road to accomplishing whatever it is we want to accomplish 🙂

On Accepting The Good Things in Your Life

I’m struggled with whether or not I should of titled this “On Accepting Privilege” ( http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Privilege_(social_inequality) ) But I want to make a distinction between the good things happening in your life which while they may of been influenced by the privilege the groups or classification you belong to are more individually centered. You can read more about the social privileges on the wikipedia link and I hope to have a blog post about it later on.

There have been a lot of good things happening in my life recently. For one I’m content / happy and have been for several weeks in a row now. This may seem like a small thing but for someone who struggles with depression and anxiety this is actually the most important things. Sometimes I catch myself just smiling and being at peace and I wonder if this is how people always feel like. Smiling, because life.

I’ve got a new job, which althought I’ve just started and have tinges of the Imposter syndrome ( http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Imposter_syndrome ) at times ( From what I’ve able to deduce, the type of employee that is targetted, the humble-ish, hard working always striving to be better, never content with the status quo is prone to this type of thinking) I really love. I have been so lucky to meet some wonderful co-workers in San Fransisco this week as well. I’m really excited to start working on team VIP. I really feel like from what I hear the hi-pressure big clients hi-stakes work will be for me. Most people who know me know how much I thrive under the big pressure deadlines and how I love to be the calm in the middle of the storm. (Which often then boggles people when I tell then I have generalized anxiety, they don’t understand how I can do high pressure so well [but that’s for another post])

There are so many good things happening in my life, I have a great stable well paying job.  Something which has not always been the case (I’ve lived with income at or just below the poverty line for a few years). My anxiety and depression is in check. My migraines are more or less in check. And yet when I talked to my Doc, I talked about how I didn’t feel I deserved all this good things, I had trouble accepting them. I had trouble accepting that I shouldn’T have more hardship because if not then life overall wouldn’t be fair. There is so much inequality in the world. I have so many great things going on. Often when I get in a bad place I’ll start talking about how I have running water and that’s not fair. I’ve never really done anything incredibly special to deserve running water anymore than the ~1 billion who still don’t have clean water.

The problem with that type of thinking is that It’s not going to help others get access to clean water or it’s not going to help fix any of the current inequalities by just going around thinking about how much I don’t deserve things and keep obsessing about it. I’m incredibly lucky / blessed and with this should come a responsability not to feel guilty about it all the time but to use everything I’m lucky to have to help. Either those around me such as helping youth with mental health or helping those who try to bring clean water to the 1 billion who don’t have it.

Accepting reality always helps us make better decisions about what to do with it. Struggling against it just wastes time that could be used increasing the happiness in the world. Either in others or in ourselves.