self-limiting behavior

How to Become More Adult and Successful in Your Life

Fear is the primary enemy to becoming an adult. Psychological defenses that are limiting and to some extent dysfunctional are strengthened and intensified when people become anxious. Yet anxiety states are often reacted to subliminally and defenses are instituted and affect our behavior without conscious awareness. In that sense, you cannot approach your fear directly;… Read more »

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Self-Sabotaging: Why We Get in Our Own Way

The expression “you are your own worst enemy” rings true for most of us. How many times have we acted against our self-interest, then asked ourselves why did we self-destruct? Why did we say that to a loved one? Why did we procrastinate on that project? Why have we stopped doing that one thing that… Read more »

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Stop Self-Sabotage by Conquering Your Inner Critic

I was once doing a radio show about our (my and my father Dr. Robert Firestone’s) work on the “critical inner voice.” The host started the show by talking about all the media attention on terrorism and the fear we, as a nation, were feeling following the attacks of 9/11. She ended her introduction by… Read more »

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Self-Esteem vs. Narcissism

As a culture, we are highly concerned with self-esteem. And this is a good thing. How we feel about ourselves determines how we treat those around us and vice versa. In 1890, William James identified self-esteem as a fundamental human need, no less essential for survival than emotions such as anger and fear. And yet,… Read more »

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What Are Defenses?

When he was 3-years-old, Kevin watched his dad drive away. For the few months following his parents’ split, Kevin and his brother had moved in with their father. The three of them lived together contentedly until the day Kevin’s mom showed up out of the blue and announced that she was taking the kids back…. Read more »

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Critical Inner Voice

What is the Critical Inner Voice? The critical inner voice is a well-integrated pattern of destructive thoughts toward ourselves and others. The nagging “voices,” or thoughts, that make up this internalized dialogue are at the root of much of our self-destructive and maladaptive behavior. The critical inner voice is not an auditory hallucination; it is… Read more »

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Self-Limiting Behaviors

  “Why do I keep sabotaging my own success?” We have the opportunity to apply for our dream job, but we end up procrastinating and missing the deadline for submitting the application. Or we go to the interview, but our behavior is uncharacteristically subdued and unenthusiastic, and we “blow the interview.” Or we actually get… Read more »

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