Adapted from The Best Year of Your Life, by Debbie Ford (HarperSanFrancisco, 2005). Debbie Ford will be presenting at the Omega Being Fearless Conference, 3/31-4/2. For more information, go to:

Any behavior you engage in that is self-sabotaging, that takes you away from what you want, or that distracts you from your goals is behavior that is self-defeating. These behaviors zap your vitality, leaving you exhausted and without access to the powerful energy you need to create your best life.

Here are 12 examples of such behaviors (such as playing solitaire on the computer at work when you have ambitions of moving up the corporate ladder), help to identify your own, and what to do about them:

• Prioritizing your to-do list and then starting at the bottom.

• Stopping for fast food when you’re committed to healthy eating.

• Focusing on what other people need to do rather than on what you need to do.

• Getting on the phone with an old friend right before you’re supposed to be at the gym.

• Saying no, no, no to your kids and 15 minutes later giving in.

• Saying that you want to lay off alcohol and then meeting a friend for a beer.

• Longing to enhance your sex life and then staying up late every night watching TV.

• Dreaming about putting away money for your future and then spending more than you make every month.

• Saying you want to have a closer relationship with your teenage kids and then criticizing their choices.

• Procrastinating taking actions that will give you what you desire.

• Worrying about what other people think of you.

• You long to get out of debt, then you find yourself catalog shopping online in the middle of the night.

Make a list of the behaviors, choices, and habits you engage in that are in direct opposition to the fulfillment of becoming the person you desire to be. Now consider what new behaviors and choices you can make to have this year be extraordinary. Please visit The Best Year of Your Life to download a worksheet for identifying your self-defeating behaviors.

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