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7 Unusual Ways You’re Sabotaging Your Success (And How To Stop)


Hi, I'm giorgia
A transformational coach on a mission to help you break through your success blocks, so you can go from overwhelmed to overbooked.
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The Freedom Formula is a proven system to help you go from overwhelmed to overbooked.

Are you sabotaging your success in business?

I know I did things that held me back – without even realising it! Like when I started my coaching business. I was so envious of bloggers who sold out their masterminds and made 6-figures in a year, I told myself they had it easy.

They probably had rich husbands who supported them while they build their business, a ton of money in the bank to invest in Facebook ads, or were just natural-born sellers. I didn’t have all that money. Or a husband supporting me. Or natural sales skills. There was no chance for me to ever reach their level.

Envy and victim-playing were my flavours of self-sabotage, the excuses I told myself to avoid facing my fear of visibility, doing live videos, and putting myself out there in a bigger way.

If you don’t nip them in the bud, these excuses become your truth and sabotage your success. How do you stop that from happening and achieve the success you deserve?

Here are the 7 most common ways you’re sabotaging your success and how to overcome them:

(FYI, this isn’t a comprehensive list. Humans sabotage themselves in a gazillion different ways. These are just some of the most subtle and unusual ones you may not even be aware of yet).

Self-Sabotage Trap #1: You Envy People Who Have What You Want

What if I told you that envy doesn’t have to be a negative emotion?

Envy is a messenger that lets you know what you want to have, do, or be. It’s meant to show you that, if something is possible for someone else, it’s possible for you, too.

But, your brain doesn’t believe it. You’ve never done it before, so it has no proof you can succeed. And so, it starts criticising that person and finding reasons why it’s not good to have what they have – so you won’t even attempt to go after it.

  • “Look at that coach! She’s showing off at that fancy hotel – again! Is she never working?”
  • “She always looks so well put together. I bet she’s really shallow.”
  • “She’s just released another online course. I bet it’s a scam.”

Every time you say something negative about the people you envy, you’re sabotaging your success. How? Think about it. Would you like it if people said the same nasty things about you? Of course not!

Your brain wants you to be safe above all else. When you say anything negative about someone else, your brain goes, “If I were to be as successful as her, people would judge me and criticise me, too. I’ll just come up with a bunch of excuses why I can’t have what she has, so I’ll never have to face that criticism.”


Admire the people you envy. Just like criticism sends a signal to your brain that success has negative consequences, admiration lets your brain know it’s ok to be successful. After all, wouldn’t you like to be a role model and receive compliments for your accomplishments?


Think of someone you envy and write down why you’re grateful for them and what their success is teaching you. For example: “Thank you Giorgia for showing me that 10K months are possible.” The more things you write down, the sooner you’ll reprogramme your brain.

Self-Sabotage Trap #2: You’re Playing The Victim

You’re probably not aware that you’re playing the victim. You just think you’re very unlucky.

  • “People just don’t have the money to invest in my services in this economy.”
  • “These online courses are all a scam. I’m working so hard and not getting any results.”
  • “I can’t start a podcast. Between work and family, I don’t have time for anything else.”

It’s true there’ll always be situations in life you have no control over. You can’t do anything about the economy, for example. But in every situation, there’s always something you can control: you. Focus on that.

  • So the economy is bad. What can you do to find clients and make your business a success?
  • So a course didn’t work for you. Have you been on all the calls, implemented all the strategies, and reached out for support? What else can you do to make it work for you?
  • So, you already have lots of commitments. What can you do to find an extra pocket of time for your dream?

“I can’t” shuts down your brain. If you don’t think there’s anything you can do about it, you won’t even try to find a solution.


Radical responsibility. No matter what situation you’re in, there’s always a way to turn things around. How to find it? Ask:

  • What can I do to solve this?
  • Who do I know who can help me solve this?
  • How can I solve this?

These questions get your brain into problem-solving mode, so that it starts looking for ways to solve the problem and finally get the results you want. Focus your mental power on how to reach your goals, not the obstacles on the way.


Think about a goal you’re trying to reach and the obstacle you’re facing. What can you do to solve this problem and get the result you want? Brainstorm 10 possible solutions and pick the one you like the most. Then do it!

Self-Sabotage Trap #3: You’re Focusing On What You Don’t Want

Have you noticed that when someone asks you what you want, you start telling them what you don’t want?

  • “I don’t want to go back to corporate.” 
  • “I don’t want to work weekends anymore.”
  • “I don’t want to deal with difficult clients who are always late with payments.” 

You get what you think about.


Your thoughts influence your feelings. Your feelings influence the actions you take (or don’t take). Your actions influence your results. Your results become your identity. The whole cycle starts again.

Let’s say you’re struggling to get clients and you’re brainstorming lead generation ideas with your coach. If you complain about how hard it is to beat the algorithm, how uncomfortable you are doing any form of public speaking, how much time you need to spend on Instagram to get traction, then you’re not going to implement any strategy. A year goes by and you still don’t have a steady stream of clients.


Focus on what you do want. Let’s go back on the example above. If you hate social media, don’t focus on it. Ask yourself, “how would it excite you to bring clients into your business?” If you’d love to spend your days writing and building your business behind the scenes, then writing blog posts and promoting them through SEO and Pinterest would be a better option for you. When you focus on what you want, you’ll meet a lot less resistance in implementing that strategy.


Think about the goal you want to achieve and then answer these questions:

  • Have I been focusing on what I want or what I don’t want?
  • What it is that you want? What is your ideal scenario? What are your non-negotiable?
  • Brainstorm a strategy that focuses on what you actually want – and then do it!

Self-Sabotage Trap #4: You’re Not Allowing Yourself To Receive

Let me guess…

  • You’re the first one to drop everything to help a friend.
  • Always go overtime on your coaching session.
  • Provide lot of free value on social media.

And yet…

  • You hesitate to ask people to recommend you to their friends.
  • You hold back from putting yourself forward as a podcast guest.
  • You even feel guilty when charging high prices for your services.

You love giving and helping others. But when it’s your turn to ask and receive, you hold back. This is one of the most subtle ways you’re sabotaging your success.

Here’s why: give and receive are parts of a cycle. If you constantly provide free content and never mention your services for example, you’re never going to make any sales. Even if people wanted to support you or work with you, they wouldn’t even know how! They can’t buy something they don’t know exist!

Giving without receiving keeps you in constant scarcity mode. You think that, at some points, people will start giving to you, but if you’re not open to receiving the support, you’ll turn it down. And then wonder why things aren’t happening for you!


Allow yourself to receive. It’s ok to be generous and help others. But you need help and support too.


What are you not allowing yourself to receive?

  • Maybe someone wants to feature you on their podcast and you haven’t answered their email yet.
  • Maybe someone owes you money and you haven’t asked for it back yet.
  • Maybe you’re thinking of creating a high-ticket offer, but receiving so much money is scaring you.

Whatever it is, take action on it and allow yourself to receive all this abundance. You’re worth it.

*Affiliate links

Self-Sabotage Trap #5: You’re Not Creating SMART Goals

The difference between a wish and a goal?

A wish is vague: “I want to make more money.”

A goal is specific: “I want to make an extra $1K a month by offering social media services to small online business owners.”

Can you see the difference and how this is sabotaging your success? When your goal is too vague, you won’t even know how to get started.

What does it mean to make more money? How much money is that? What strategy will you use? Who will help you? Your brain is so confused, it’ll keep you stuck in inaction.

Vague goals let you off the hook. When you fail, it won’t be because you didn’t put in the effort. The goal simply was too big and vague.


Create SMART goals:

  • Specific: What exactly do you want to achieve?
  • Measurable: How will you know you’ve accomplished this goal?
  • Attainable: Do you have all the tools and resources you need to achieve this goal? If not, can you get them?
  • Relevant: Is it a priority in your life right now? What’s your why for doing this?
  • Time-oriented: What is the deadline?

Now you know what you want to achieve, when, and how, and have a way to measure your success, your brain will know how to support you and what action to take to reach it. So go do it!


Turn a vague goal into a SMART goal and start working towards it.

Related: 4 Ways To Stop Worrying And Start Taking Action Towards Your Dreams

Self-Sabotage Trap #6: You’re Not Surrounding Yourself With Supportive People

You know what they say: your network is your net worth.

If you spend most of your time with people who think being an entrepreneur is dangerous, who see opportunities as risks, and complain about their problems without doing anything about them, their negativity will seep into your brain. You’ll start believing they’re right and downsize your goals.

You also won’t have people you can reach out to for support. Who is going to give you referrals? Who are you going to pair up with for collaborations? Where are you going to hear about the secret opportunities in your industry?


Surround yourself with people who are going for their dreams, so you’re inspired to do the same. Successful people will motivate to keep going when you’re experiencing a challenge. Connect you to the right people who can help you go to your next level. Promote you to their network.

FYI, you don’t need to leave your old friends behind. This is about expanding your network and spending more time with people who can help you reach your goals.


Start building your supportive community now. If you don’t know where to start, here are a few ideas:

  • Join a Facebook group.
  • Enroll in a class/group programme/mastermind, like The Leadership Advantage.
  • Work with a coach.
  • Reach out to people you resonate with on Instagram.
  • Go to networking events in your city.

Self-Sabotage Trap #7: You Don’t Believe In Yourself 

This is a self-fulfilling prophecy. If you don’t believe you have what it takes to do something, you won’t take action towards it. If you don’t take action towards it, you won’t reach your goals. It’s as simple as that.

Your mind will always find reasons why it’s not possible for you.

  • I’m not skilled/old/young/pretty/extroverted/whatever enough.
  • I haven’t been able to reach this goal so far, maybe I just don’t have what it takes.
  • If only I had more money/time/connections, then I could…
  • Small town girls like me never make it big.

Fears, doubts, and limiting beliefs are luxuries you simply can’t afford when you’re going for your goals.


Trust that you wouldn’t have that desire if you couldn’t make it happen. Limiting beliefs are just fear in disguise. As long as you tell yourself that you don’t have what it takes, you’ll never have to take the action that makes you uncomfortable – the action that’ll help you succeed.

Instead of focusing on why you can’t, focus on why you can. All the skills, experiences, and qualifications you’ve accumulated that make you the perfect person to reach this goal and take action from that place. Such a different energy, right?


When a limiting belief or self-doubt comes up, question it:

  • Is this really true?
  • Do I know anyone who had the same challenges as me and were able to overcome it?
  • Is there anything I can do to overcome this limitation?

If the answer to the last two questions is yes, then your belief isn’t really true. If it’s not true, you don’t have to believe it.

So what is true? Write down a list of reasons why you’re qualified and ready to reach your goal – and then take action from that place.

How To Stop Sabotaging Your Success

Now you know in what ways you’re sabotaging your success, be aware of your triggers. 

Whenever you find yourself focusing on what you don’t want, for example, ask yourself, “Wait a minute, is this thought/behaviour serving me? Is it moving me towards my goals?”

Once you become aware of your thoughts and feelings, you can let them go and take the right action towards your goals.

I share more tools on how to overcome your self-sabotaging patterns in the Self-Sabotage Solution, a proven system to rewire your mind (and your nervous system) for success. By the end of the system, you’ll be able to take the bold action that used to scare you with confidence and ease, so you can finally reach your goal without hustling. To get exclusive access to the system, join The Leadership Advantage here.

Wrapping It Up

There are so many ways you could be sabotaging your success – without even realising it. Now that you’re aware of the most common forms of self-sabotage, you can stop it in its track and take the right action to reach your goals.

Are you an overwhelmed female entrepreneur, coach, or service-based provider ready to break through your current plateau and reach your next income level?

I invite you to join The Leadership Advantage, a proven system to break up with your subconscious success blocks, so you can go from overwhelmed to overbooked – without trying yet another marketing strategy.

1️⃣ First, identify and break through the subconscious success block that keeps you stuck in overwhelm, so you can finally increase your income while reducing your workload – and be able to take time off with your family without feeling guilty. 🚀

2️⃣ Then, we put the mindset work in practice with a set of high-performance tools and habits to transform your identity, so you can attract higher-paying clients and opportunities that match the next level version of yourself – without sacrificing more of your personal life.💰

3️⃣ Finally, we create a game plan so you know the exact steps to take each day to reach your next income level, feel confident and in control of your business – no more getting distracted by new shiny tactics. 💪

Ready to Break Free? Click below and let’s make it happen!


Let’s unlock your next level of success together.

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I'm Giorgia, transformational coach on a mission to help you break through your subconscious blocks to success and become the confident leader who can make bold moves, so you can finally reach your big business and income goals without hustling.

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