May 6, 2022

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Stop Sabotaging Your Relationship!

We often sabotage our relationship and then complain about our circumstances or blame our spouse for our unhappiness. ~ Jeani Poe, Love Recon

Any behavior that you engage in that sabotages you and prevents you from experiencing your best life and best relationship is your responsibility to change. These behaviors are obstacles and barriers to deeply connecting and experiencing true intimacy in all areas. They can be distractions that side track your relationship. Often, they drain your energy and creativity and exhaust you so that you don’t have the energy to create the life and relationship that you want. Until you acknowledge them and have the courage to overcome them, you will repeat them over and over and never experience the relationship that you long for.

Some common relationship-sabotaging behavior patterns are:Stop Sabotaging Your Relationship body.jpg

  • Procrastination – putting off date night, the overnight getaway, or even a loving phone call or text to your spouse expressing that you’re thinking about him/her.
  • Stubborn pride – always having to be right and believing that you always know best.
  • Unwillingness to ask for help – ignoring your mate’s attempts to be your “teammate” in challenging situations.
  • Being a “people pleaser” – putting others’ needs and wants before your partner’s
  • Making comparisons – Comparing your relationship or your spouse to others
  • Feeling undeserving – thwarting your partner’s attempts at loving actions and words and not receiving genuine compliments
  • Perfectionism – subjecting your spouse and yourself to impossible standards an no enjoying what you have in each other
  • Fear of taking a risk – refusing to be spontaneous or to take calculated risks
  • Negative self-talk – “Our relationship has never worked and it never will. He/she will never change or grow. “
  • Negative Guilt and Shame – “What I’ve done is unforgivable.” “I’ll never be good enough for my spouse.”  “I would … I should… I ought to …”
  • Being easily distracted – phone calls, social media, “squirrel!”
  • Focusing on the past – illogically hoping for a better past

Take Action to Stop Sabotaging Your Relationship!

Identify the behaviors that you engage in that sabotage our relationship. (They don’t have to be on the list above).

Work through the following bullet points:

  • I think that my relationship-sabotaging behaviors are…

(List them.)


Now address each one of these behaviors, one at a time, as indicated below.

  • I believe this behavior has affected my life and my relationship by…
  • The underlying fear or belief that has kept me trapped in this behavior is…
  • The belief or truth that I will use to change my thinking and conquer this behavior is… (You don’t even have to believe it yet. If you can identify it and then begin to intentionally believe and apply it, you will transform your life and relationship.)


If your partner is willing to have this conversation, ask if they have observed any other relationship-sabotaging behaviors in you.  Then, as an extra measure of accountability, tell them, “I give you my permission to lovingly point out to me when I am engaging in any behaviors that are harmful to our relationship as a couple.”  This may open the door for them to share their relationship-sabotaging behaviors with you.


To overcome these behaviors isn’t always easy and help may be required.  Recon Coaching and Love Recon seminars can help. To find out how, call 866-218-1716.

About the author 

Cliff Poe

Cliff Poe is Founder and Lead Coach for Recon Coaching. He and his wife, Jeani, are Master Coaches and their passion is to help individuals and couples form healthy, lasting and satisfying relationships. Cliff has a M.Div. in pastoral counseling and ministry. He enjoys writing and coaching as well as his family which includes 2 adult kids and their spouses, 6 grandchildren and a fur family composed of a Golden Retriever and a Mackerel Tabby.

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