Patterns: Self Destruction Mind Trick

Recently a close friend suddenly and completely severed our relationship.

It was shocking because it was so unexpected and so radical.

He offered no explanation, didn’t return my emails, and slammed the door on a five-year wonderful relationship.

It made me wonder what was going on in my friend’s life for him to act like this. Not only was it unnecessary, as a simple phone or in-person meeting could have cleared up whatever was bothering him, his action also severed a long term business relationship. I was planning to come out with new products I’d create with his help. This is wealth he’ll now miss out on receiving, as I can always do the products with someone else.

I told another friend about this troubling experience and he said, “It’s simply your turn.”

My turn?

He went on to explain that the friend who turned against me had gotten mad at virtually every close friend over the years, including the one I was talking to.

As I thought about it, I realized this was a self destruction or self sabotage pattern.

Whenever things hit some sort of internal button, my old friend hit a switch inside his brain and flipped out. He’s been mad at every single mutual friend we have. Apparently it really is my turn.

I thought about this and wondered why we don’t see our self-destruct patterns, or if we do, interrupt them and stop them.  It made me wonder about self sabotage and self destruction in myself and others.

warsaw stop command

I was in Krakow, Poland as I lay awake one night and reflected on all this. My mind was digging into the psychological motivations for acting out self destruction. After what seemed like hours I came to the conclusion that we don’t see our patterns while we’re in them. We only see them later, after the dust has settled and we can see clearly again. At that point, shame and regret often kick in.

But why don’t we see the pattern as it’s happening?

warsaw new clothes

I remember an attorney once telling me that the human machine isn’t wired to admit fault. We will simply find it easier to blame others.

I also remember Dr. Hew Len, my coauthor for Zero Limits, saying that none of us want to take responsibility for what occurs. It’s too hard. Or said the other way, it’s just so easy to point fingers at others.

I asked Andrzej Batko (pictured above with me), an NLP master trainer and the wonderful man who brought me to Poland (twice so far) to hold Law of Attraction events in Warsaw, what he thought about self-destruction.

“It’s a mind trick,” he said. “I don’t usually see the self sabotage pattern in myself until after it’s over. If I’m aware, I can start to catch it before I repeat it.”

warsaw largest cigar

What can we do about this trick of the mind?

There appears to be two ways to stop self destruction or self sabotage:

1. Awareness. When you’re aware of a pattern, you can begin to interrupt it with a new behavior or insight so you don’t repeat it. This takes work. One book that can help is Why Is This Happening to Me …Again? by Michael Ryce.  My own book, The Key, is also useful. Also, my Awakening Course can be the turning point for you.

2. Coaching. When you have a skilled coach to help reflect your behavior and thoughts back to you, you can more easily escape the unconscious spiral of self-destruction. If you don’t mind the plug, I suggest you check out the Joe Vitale Miracles Coaching program. It’s been helping thousands of people for more than four years now.

How important is coaching?

On the way to see the Leopard sports car, a hand made limited edition roadster made in Poland, I met a man who took all the money he made in one year and gave it to a coach for one year of training.

Consider that: he took an entire year’s wages to get one year of weekly coaching. He said this transformed his life. He’s now a successful, self-employed entrepreneur.

My friend with the self-destruct pattern of getting mad at friends will have to find his way out of the maze. I’ll continue to love him, clean on the experience with ho’oponopono, and monitor my own life for any signs of the mind trick that stops most of us from the success we truly want to attract.

Meanwhile, reflect on the patterns in your own life.

It may truly be time for a change.

Ao Akua,


PS — All above photos, taken in Warsaw, are by Grzegorz Sylla of in Poland.

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  1. November 1, 2009 at 9:27 am

    Ahoy Joe,

    I agree with all you say. I know you are a fan of Albert Einstein (me too) and the situation you describe about not seeing problems while they are occurring can also be explained by: “We can’t solve problems by using the same kind of thinking we used when we created them.”

    You can’t “observe” a situation when you are “in” the situation.

    All the best…. Arrr.


  2. November 1, 2009 at 4:32 pm

    Great food for thought. I am a believer in having coaches because there is no way we can objectively see our own behavior for what it is — self sabotage! Thanks for the reminder 🙂

  3. Eunice-Reply
    November 1, 2009 at 6:14 pm

    This is an interesting situation because other people you are very close with also are experiencing this. Could it be as Dr. Len said that the right people show up in our lives and the wrong people go away. Maybe this person was a bad fit for you and what you are doing. Could be the action of the devine.

  4. November 2, 2009 at 5:40 am

    Hi Joe,

    Most people go through cycle after cycle of what your friend is experiencing without even realizing it. It reminds me of the old saying about not being able to see the forest because the trees are in the way.

    It certainly takes tremendous effort to see the patterns in our own life. For example, I recently thought of something I needed to do to help my business grow. I had put it on my daily “to-do” list for several weeks, but it never seemed to get done. I finally realized that not doing it was related to my thoughts about money. (Your videos helped me see that – thanks!)

    Here’s hoping your friend will somehow realize the root cause of his behavior so he can break the cycle.

    Thanks for once again helping us see our potential.

    Steve DeVane

  5. November 2, 2009 at 9:05 am

    I read Zero Limits, great book! I’ve been self-sabotaging myself with my thoughts with regards to my financial prosperity. I realized that it will behoove me to workout my “brain” each day. I enjoy physical prosperity because I work at it and affirm that I am getting stronger each day and that my body is slim and trim! Now, I’ve made a commitment to work on my financial prosperity. This is my BIGGEST challenge, but I’m up for it.

  6. November 2, 2009 at 12:48 pm

    Well, it still hurts Joe. It will hurt because they are denying you their presence in your life. Which you enjoyed. And the discomfort of not being able to understand the reasoning or the motives, whatever the source of the motive may can be irritating.
    We are but human and we all have to accommodate that we are a moving complex puzzle with pieces still being created daily on our journey towards simplicity. Arohanui from me in New Zealand.

  7. November 2, 2009 at 7:12 pm

    Ay ay ay Joe,

    Lateley for me, your posts have been getting better and better, as they stir up ALOT of stuff that I need to clean on.
    I know this is beside the point (not a part of the lesson you are trying to put out for us here ) but..

    Who knows what this guy is thinking. If you love him, ( you said you did in the post =) why dont you try to approach him once more..And ask him what the problem is..

    Sure it’s his responsiblity to speak up if he feels the frienship was lopsided, or if you “did something that offended him’..

    All I’m saying is that has happened to me before and I did not have a problem giving my good friend a swift kick in the keister, and left the door open to come talk to me when he was ready.. He did and we saved a frienship that has lasted over 30 years.

    Love and Blessings

  8. Ravin-Reply
    November 3, 2009 at 10:01 am

    Thank you dr. joe,

    I will re-read the key book. And will look at this points carefully. This is really imp. topic for me.


  9. Joseph-Reply
    November 6, 2009 at 4:08 pm

    Greetings from just down the road in Wimberley, Joe.

    Great blog entry. I had a close friend that did a similar thing 5 years ago, and it has troubled me since. I’ve often thought of him, and we haven’t spoken since his faitful email, though I tried reaching out a number of times. Thinking back to prior conversations we had over the years, he’d mentioned other friendships with similar results. I guess it was my turn….

  10. November 23, 2009 at 2:37 am

    Hi everybody!
    Albert Einstein said, that the problem will never be solved at the level it appeared.

    May my multimedia project “When jealousy dissolves with the “Love Formula” in your computer” help everybody who’d stuck in jealousy? I had to develop The Love Formula for myself to heal both present and past tendencies in jealousy.
    Also I’d like to express my gratitude to Andrzej Batko for his generosity to be trained with Steve Andreas in Poland, 2003.
    Enjoy knowledge and stay happy

  11. November 23, 2009 at 3:19 am

    Hi everybody!
    Albert Einstein once said, that the problem will never be solved at the level it appeared.
    May my multimedia project “When jealousy dissolves with the “Love Formula” in your computer” help everybody who’d stuck in jealousy? I had to develop The Love Formula for myself to heal both present and past tendencies in jealousy.
    Also I’d like to express my gratitude to Andrzej Batko for his generosity to be trained with Steve Andreas in Poland, 2003.
    Enjoy knowledge and stay happy

  12. June 24, 2011 at 11:23 am

    Thank you dr. joe

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