10 Ways You Are Self Sabotaging Your Happiness

10 Ways you are Self Sabotaging your Happiness

Today I wanted to talk about a topic that resonates with me… SELF SABOTAGING. This is something I was guilty of and still am at times. What I mean by this is there are ways that we hold ourselves back from pursuing what we want in life. This leads to self sabotage without even realizing. I want to touch base on some of the ways we destroy our own happiness. Throughout the years I learned how to let go of my limiting beliefs and self sabotaging ways. Now I want to teach you to do the same!

10 ways you are self sabotaging your happiness.

1.- Limiting Beliefs

Raise your hand if you have some limiting beliefs! I know I sure did…until I realized these beliefs were holding me back.

When I first graduated high school I had this “idea” that I NEEDED to go to college in order to be successful. That’s what you are supposed to do right? If you don’t go to college you will never be successful… That’s what they told me.

So what did I do? I went to college.

The first year was okay but I was filled with anxiety and no matter how hard I tried, I could not stay focused. I hated it. To be honest, I was never a lover of school anyway. Don’t get me wrong, I LOVE to learn… but if it’s a topic that I have no interest in (for example history or science) FORGET IT.

About a year and a half into college I made the decision to drop out. YEP. Many of my family members and friends were shocked and kept pushing me to go back. BUT I didn’t. I stood my ground and I didn’t go back. I wanted to prove to them and to myself that I COULD be successful without a college degree.

Not going to lie, the first year after dropping out was hard. I felt like I was going to be a waitress the rest of my life because that’s all I really ever knew. I did go through depression and anxiety. I talk about my struggles here.

BUT one day I had this epiphany. I knew that I had to start living life FOR ME and I had to go after my dreams regardless of any limiting beliefs I had. SO I started my blog and now here I am today… About a year later I was able to work from home through my blog and now I work for myself FULL TIME without that college degree.

I am not saying that college is bad or don’t go to college. WHAT I AM SAYING is society makes it seem like you need to go to college in order to be successful and that’s FALSE. It’s been proven wrong MANY times. If college isn’t what you want, that’s okay. This topic bothers a lot of people but it’s a limiting belief that I let go of.

Once you stop living your life the way others want you to live it, you realize what motivates you and truly makes you happy! Go after that and don’t stop.

Get rid of those limiting beliefs!

What’s a limiting belief you have? 

2.- Self Doubt

I think it’s safe to say we are ALL guilty of this. It’s so easy to doubt our abilities. We are only human. I have been working extremely hard on eliminating any self doubt!

I always say,

You don’t need everyone to believe in you. The only person who really needs to believe in you is YOURSELF.

It can be hard getting yourself to truly believe that you are capable of anything you set your mind to, BUT the power of a positive mindset is truly SO important!

The next time you start to think “I don’t think I can do this.” PAUSE and rephrase your thoughts. “If I try, I can DEFINITELY do this!”

I also enjoy positive affirmations. Starting your day off with positive affirmations can be life changing.

Here are some of my favorite affirmations:

  • I am strong
  • I am capable of anything I set my mind to.
  • Today is going to be a GOOD day.
  • I am worthy of a life that brings me happiness.
  • I am beautiful inside and out.
  • There is nothing that will stand in my way.
  • I believe in me.
  • I choose faith over fear.
  • I can have the life I want.
  • I will not stress over things I can’t control.
  • I attract positivity.
  • I am fearless.
  • There is nothing I can’t accomplish.
  • I am enough.
  • I am becoming richer everyday.
  • I can and I will do this.
  • I love myself completely.

What I love about affirmations is that they tie in with the “Law of Attraction.” If you haven’t heard of the law of attraction, you should definitely read into it! It pretty much says you can attract anything into your life through your mind and believing. Like manifesting! The more you talk to yourself in a positive way, the more you truly begin to believe it. You attract the energy you put out! Whatever you focus on, you will attract into your life.

I started practicing the law of attraction, manifesting, and getting into affirmations at the end of 2018 and it made a HUGE impact in not only my business but in my personal life as well. I began to believe in myself more and I felt like I truly could accomplish ANYTHING I wanted to. I even saw growth in all areas of my life.

Your mind is powerful and it is SO important to keep it positive.

3.- Fear

I can’t tell you how many times I let fear get in my way! We all have fears… It’s inevitable! BUT there are certain fears that can be holding us back from our true potential. ESPECIALLY when it comes to going after the life we want.

Before I started my blog and decided to go after happiness, I was held back by countless amounts of fears like:

FEAR OF FAILINGWhat if I put in all of the time and effort and it amounts to nothing? What if I fail?

BUT – I thought to myself…you only fail if you give up. SO, I went for it and I didn’t give up even when I wanted to. I had to push through that fear and keep going even when it felt like it wasn’t working. Instead of giving up, try a new approach, a different strategy, and change your negative mindset.

FEAR OF JUDGEMENT – This was a HUGE setback for me in the beginning. I was so afraid of people I know personally, finding out about my blog because I used to care SO MUCH about what people thought of me. Did you know that my blog is called EllDuclos because I didn’t want to use my real name… almost like a secret identity.

BUT – I got over that fear and I still remember the first day I shared my blog on my personal Facebook account. I was so nervous. What if they laugh? What if they make fun of me?

Guess what… Some did, BUT a lot of people supported me! Many who I never would have guessed actually supported me! Even though I had people laugh at the time… In the end, WHO CARES WHAT THEY THINK. Life is too short to let other people decide your life for you. DO YOU. DO WHAT YOU WANT TO DO. That’s all that matters.

Whatever your fears are, don’t let them hold you back. Some of the BEST things are experienced outside of our comfort zones. Take that leap of faith and trust that the universe has your back! YOU CAN DO IT.

4.- Excuses

Oh boy do I know excuses all too well! The amount of times I have made excuses for myself…

“I’ll fold the laundry tomorrow…it’s okay.” OR “I’ll start my blog next week, one week won’t hurt.”

BUT GUESS WHAT…the more you push it off, the further away you are from reaching your goal.

I can push off folding laundry all week, but once I finally decide to do it I have created more work for myself than if I decided to just do it right away.

I can push off starting my blog, but if I started it a week before I could have turned it into my full time job even sooner!

You don’t want to look back and regret waiting. There is no better time than NOW. If you want something bad enough you MAKE TIME for it. You don’t make excuses. Stop letting your excuses hold you back.

Related: How to Set and Accomplish your Goals

10 ways you are self sabotaging your happiness.

5.- Comparison

This one is HUGE because I know for a FACT that we all do this! The biggest way I can self sabotage myself is through comparison. Especially now a days when EVERYTHING is out there on social media. You look through someone’s Instagram and you wish your life was a little bit like there’s.

Or maybe you are a blogger too and can relate to the comparison game through other bloggers. You see their numbers, you wish you had as many followers or blog views as they do. I get it. It’s tough! You see other bloggers doing it full time and you don’t understand why it can’t be you.

Here’s the thing… No one is perfect. You can make yourself look perfect on the outside but behind the scenes everyone’s life has flaws.

One of my favorite quotes:

Don’t compare your behind the scenes to someone else’s highlight reel.

People get to choose what you see and know about. They will of course pick their BEST photos, and heck do you know how many bloggers out there EXAGGERATE the truth… Don’t believe it all.

Especially when Instagram has become one HUGE fake fest. So many bloggers claim they grew their following over night organically but trust me…it DOES NOT work that way. Fake followers are a REAL thing and it’s polluting Instagram.

Which is why you should NEVER compare your life, your journey, your success to ANYONE else’s. If you want to try and be better than someone else, do yourself a favor and only try to be better than the person you were yesterday.

I stopped focusing on how other’s were living their life and started focusing on how I can better my own life and it is refreshing. The less I focus on how other people are doing it, the more time I have to focus on how I can do it. That’s when BIG THINGS happen.

6.- Negativity

Sometimes you are self sabotaging yourself simply by surrounding yourself with negative energy. Not only in your own thoughts but what about the people you are surrounding yourself by? Are they lifting you up or are they bringing you down?

It is so EASY to not even realize that some of the most important people in your life can actually be the ones hurting you the most. I am not saying everyone has to support you but if you are surrounded by people who are eating away at your positive light, their negative energy is going to rub off on you.

I try my best to surround myself with goal getters, people who believe in me, and those who support me. You can only grow if you allow yourself to. Having someone in your life who doesn’t believe in you, never supports you, and even talks down to you can have a huge affect on your mental health and growth.

Don’t be afraid to cut the negativity out of your life. Sometimes it’s necessary.

7.- Giving up

Remember how I said you only fail if you give up? WELL, it’s true. If you decide to give up then what was all that hard work for? Nothing.

I have been there, I know the feeling of wanting to throw in the towel and call it quits. It’s not easy to get yourself out of that negative place… BUT I PROMISE YOU, it get’s better. Your hard work will pay off. Sometimes it takes longer than we want it to, which is why I had to really learn how to be patient.

Reasons why you shouldn’t give up:

  • Success might be right around the corner
  • You could live with regrets
  • People are rooting for you
  • You want to prove to yourself that you can
  • All that hard work would be for nothing
  • You only fail if you give up
  • The best has yet to come

If you feel like you are wanting to give up right now, let this be a sign to KEEP GOING!

8.- Not giving yourself enough credit

This ties into self doubt. I am a HUGE believer in celebrating all accomplishments, both big and small! It’s okay to be your own cheerleader.

When you fail to recognize just how hard you are working, you tend to self sabotage your happiness. You put in the work, now appreciate yourself and give yourself credit!


9.- Taking on too much at once

I AM SO GUILTY OF THIS. Sometimes I take on too many projects at once because my creative mind is always racing! I get all of these amazing ideas and I want them all done NOW! But that’s just not realistic. I am only one person!

If you take on too many tasks at once you are setting yourself up for self sabotage!

Remember you are only one person and you can only do so much! Be realistic! You don’t want to stress yourself out by taking on too much.

I have been trying to get more organized this year so I know exactly what I can handle at a given time. It’s okay to slow down your pace. If you are constantly busy you are taking away from your happiness and it can be mentally draining!

Related: How to stay organized & productive

10.- Settling

Last but not least, settling is sabotaging your happiness! I see people do this a lot! They are “comfortable” with the life they are living… it’s not what they want but they are making ends meet so they are settling for it.

OR maybe you are in a relationship that isn’t making you happy BUT you don’t want to start over, or you fear being alone so you are settling.

When you settle for anything in life, you are failing to make yourself truly happy.

Here is a real life example that I am dealing with right now.

I am renting a home here in MA… I can afford it but it isn’t making me happy. My home is dark and fails to keep me motivated. My family and friends (besides my best friend) live in MA so moving to another state is a scary thought…HOWEVER the homes here in MA are extremely expensive compared to homes in other states. I have the flexibility to work from where ever I want… Moving is on my mind and finding a home that makes me happy is a goal. I refuse to settle and live in a home here in MA that makes me unhappy.

My family and friends are in MA and my heart will always be in MA but it’s time to make BIG MOVES and find a home that makes me happy. Working from home is HARD when you don’t love your living space. I will always come back to MA and visit my friends and family as much as I can, BUT I need a home that makes me happy.

SO REMEMBER THIS: Don’t settle for ANYTHING in life. Always do what makes YOU happy.

I hope this helps to motivate you to live your BEST life this year because I have a feeling it’s going to be YOUR year! When it comes to making yourself happy it all starts with YOU. Make choices that will bring you happiness. Always keep a positive mindset, and believe you are capable of living a life you deserve.


Until  next time,


Author: ellduclos

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  • I found your college experience so relatable. I was in college for 3 years and I didn’t enjoy it at all. Only after I quit college I started volunteering abroad, traveling, and I started enjoying my life so much!

    • So nice to know that I’m not the only one that struggled with college!! It was a tough choice to make but I don’t ever regret dropping out!

  • Great post! And I agree – working from home, especially one you don’t love is hard! You definitely shouldn’t settle for that (or anything)… good luck with that!

  • I was totally guilty of doubting myself through college. It is still something that I deal with when it comes to blogging, but it is totally getting better. Last year I decided that I was going to just cut negativity out of my life, and I’ve actually been able to not only reduce the negativity around me but eliminated a ton of sources of it as well! Loved this post!

    Ashlee | http://www.maybeafterbrunch.com

  • I love this affirmations! I’ve been reading up on the Laws of Attraction recently and completely believe in it. I’m going to give these some tries!


  • This is so true! I am guilty of some of these myself, unintentionally of course. It’s important to recognize our self sabotaging habits and actively correct them! Thanks for sharing this!

  • I think that settling is the biggest thing holding me back at times. I find myself becoming lazy and getting complacent,. I love your positive affirmations though I will definitely be keeping a couple of them in my back pocket for later use! Great post!

  • Great words on how to stay focused on your goals and keep a positive mindset. If you are serious about moving Raleigh/Durham NC always makes one of the top places to live (but I am biased as I live here and it is my hometown!).

  • I appreciate this post! I’ve felt all the same feelings and think I’m finally pushing past it. The only thing I still struggle with is negativity. Seriously! I never thought so many of my main supporters like my family don’t think I can manage to do big things by starting a blog.

    • Don’t worry Maddie you are not alone!! I too have struggled with the same issues! Just know the only thing that matters is that you believe in yourself! That’ll take you all the way! 💗

  • You have truly inspired me. I want to memorize each point you have made here. I want to print this and stick it on my wall so I can read this daily. And by the way, you are amazing to have known exactly what was good for you and brave enough to leave college in spite of what people were going to say, family disappointment etc. i know too well how hard it is to do something live a certain way because of thats what someones else expects. It is your life. I am now more than ever determined to go for my dreams. I have let fear and all these things you say hold me back. You are amazingly perceptive. This moved me. Thank you for writing it. I feel I was meant to see it today because I am doing a job I hate for money but it is not me it is so physically crushing, mentally exhausting. And all I want to do is make money blogging. I will come back to read this post. saved on Pinterest.

    • Thank you so much for your sweet words! Truly made my day!! You can achieve anything you set your mind to and I am rooting for you all the way!!! 💗 Don’t ever give up!

  • Last month I decided to move to another country. This week, I started to doubt myself and having really negative thoughts, mostly because it’s extremely hard for me to leave my parents. I started to think about breaking up with my boyfriend and staying here with my parents forever… but that’s not right! I have to at least try. I can’t let fear and self-doubt win. Maybe it’ll work or maybe it won’t, but giving up isn’t the solution.

    I really needed to read this post. Thank you!

    • Aw thank you so much for sharing your own personal story! You are right too! Don’t let fear and self doubt stop you! What’s meant to be will always be! Sending love!

  • Thanks you for the self affirmations, I would benefit from saying these things to myself every morning. I also get in the “comparison” trap. I do consider myself successful, but I have made many sacrifices to get here and I always compare myself with women that have babies etc… I want that too, but it’s just not the right time. I have to avoid looking at that kind of stuff because jealousy doesn’t look good on anybody. I also have a great husband but he doesn’t like sharing or being public about our relationship, which is really fine, but when I see people blasting their relationship over social media I get jealous of that too. It’s funny how much we want other people to see our happiness or success.

    • Aw you are so welcome and just know you are not alone in feeling that way! But everything happens for a reason and when it’s supposed to! That’s what makes our journies so special!

  • Oh my gosh I found this at the right time! I just dropped out of college after getting accepted into my major because I realized it was super unhealthy to do the insane amount of work required. This has been probably the hardest decision in my life so far, and hearing someone else having similar experiences like yourself (and other people in the comments) is super encouraging! Also wow everything on this list is such good advice. I’m currently working especially hard on self love and improving myself to live the best life I can and I’ll definitely be returning to this post to reaffirm these concepts 🖤🖤🖤

    • Thank you so much! It’s so great to know I’m not alone!! Sending you positive vibes and love! You will find what you are meant to be doing and it’ll be the best decision!

  • It is just like you were reading my mind when you wrote this…now I know exactly what I need to do!! Thank you so much!!!!

  • I found your college experience so relatable. I was in college for 3 years and I didn’t enjoy it at all. Only after I quit college I started volunteering abroad, traveling, and I started enjoying my life so much!

  • Thank you so much for this article – I loved it! I have struggled with anxiety & depression for yrs and lately life has gotten extremely difficult. I have an amazing partner for the first time yet I am self sabotaging & needing to make personal changes in my life/ career to make me happy. Reading this gives me so much motivation to do so!!! Nice to know I haven’t been the only one and you expressed it in the perfect words !!