HDR. Congratulations. Your talent is in using Photoshop not in using a camera. High Dynamic Range looks unnatural and needs to go the way of the dinosaur.
Over-toning images in sports photojournalism contests. Stop boosting the saturation on your sports images to obscene, Willy-Wonka-like levels. It doesn’t make your lack of composition or lack of ability to capture peak sports action any less obvious. You shoot digital, not Velvia.
Shooting everything at f1.2. Great. Another picture of a door knob shot at f1 point something. You paid a lot for your 50mm. Don’t be afraid to stop down every once in while, would ya?
Back lit outdoor portraits. Its the only image I see on wedding and senior picture portfolios these days. Give it a rest. Try lighting a portrait or even better yet turn around and use the best available light there is – the sun.