How Is Your Mind Holding You Back?

blocks-to-successAre you feeling happy and enjoying life? Do you feel that your world is expanding you’re  growing as a person and experiencing great things?


Are you feeling frustrated, trapped, blocked or bored with your life?

Is it possible that you are…

Creating your own prison bars?



Is Your Mind Driving You Forward or Holding You Back?

If there are some areas of your life that are working really well, then it’s likely that you have a set of positive beliefs about that aspect of your life, but if there is an area of your life that isn’t working, then it’s likely you have some underlying negative beliefs, that are holding you back.

Knowing your start point is really important and I use a great coaching tool with my clients, to establish what’s working well and what’s not working so well in their lives.

  • The Wheel of Life is available as a FREE Download and you’d like to receive your copy, just leave me your name and email address in the sign up blox and I’ll send it to you.

This tool really helps to give some clarity on what’s working well or not in our lives and helps to identify what changes we can make that will enhance our life. It’s amazing how making some small changes can have a massive knock on effect on lots of other areas of our lives.

However, sometimes we make plans to change and maybe we even start new things, full of enthusiasm and determination, but then somewhere along the line, we lose our motivation or we just give up completely.


We often develop some beliefs about ourselves that hold us back. We believe we can’t do something and fear the outcome if we do.  You can read more about beliefs here:

However, Beliefs aren’t the only things that hold us back and one of the biggest blocksto our success is FEAR.

  • Fear
    • that we’re not good enough, that people will laugh at us, that we’ll let ourselves or someone close to us down, that we’ll make a fool of ourselves etc
    • of disappointing ourselves or others
    • of being embarrassed or ashamed
    • of letting somebody down
    • of being judged
    • of rejection
    • of loneliness
    • of change

We start to think of all the what if’s:

What if they leave me, hate me, laugh at me” or “What if I’m left on my own forever” etc.

We may start to create stories about what might happen, if we make changes and often we create negative pictures of the future, based on what we’ve learned from past experiences.

We may also have people in our lives who try to hold us back because as we begin to change, they feel like they’re being left behind.

Who Are Your Naysers?

When we plan to make changes in our lives, it’s helpful to think about who is likely to support you and motivate you to change and who is likely to hold you back. Are there people in your life who try to put you off doing new things or maybe they just make those little comments here and there which dash your hopes and dreams?

  • Naysayers
    • those people who make a little (or big) dig when we start something new “You’ll never achieve that…” “You can’t move away because….” “You’ll make a fool of yourself if….”

Sadly though, our biggest Naysayer is often ourselves. Yes – that voice in our head that comes up with all the reasons why we shouldn’t do something…

  • Our own negative committee in our head that plants the seeds of doubt “I can’t do that because…. ” “I’m not good enough” “I’ll make a fool of myself” “Everybody will laugh at me”

Have you ever started working toward your goal and initially you’re full of enthusiasm and then at some point, you seem to be taking one step forward and two steps back, or maybe you’ve lost your enthusiasm and you just feel stuck or possibly you feel completely overwhelmed with what you have to do, so you do nothing?
Have people around you started to notice the changes you’re making and they’ve started to make those little comments: “You don’t need to do that” “Why are you bothering, nothing will change?” etc. So now you’re questioning whether you should just stop and go back to where you were before?

So How Do We Overcome These Blocks?

  • Plan Ahead – if you think about all the things and people (including yourself) that may try to hold you back, you can think about some strategies for how you’ll deal with it. You’ll also notice more consciously when something is happening that is starting to hold you back or to make you think negatively. When you notice the early signs, you can jump in with your new strategy.
  • Complete the Brilliance Within Life Audit – clarifying your start point, understanding your core values and current beliefs and developing a clear vision for where you want to go, makes it easier to start taking steps toward your new goals and dreams. It also helps to remind us what skills we’ve already learned that will help us and to identify what new skills we may need to learn.
  • Be Conscious – Start to notice your own thoughts and be aware of the comments that other people are making. If you notice you’re having some negative thoughts, sit down with a piece of paper and identify what the beliefs are that you hold that are supporting the negative thoughts.
  • Challenge Yourself – Ask yourself whether the way you’re thinking is the only way to think. Put Your Shoe On The Other Foot – Try looking at what’s happening from a different perspective. Our mind interprets situations, images, words etc. based on what we’ve learned from previous experiences and may no longer be the appropriate way to think. What we learn about ourselves as a child, may well have been based on someone else’s misconceptions about themselves or us. Asking ourselves if there is a different way to think about something, can help to break down some of our barriers to success.
  • Review Progress – If you start to make some changes, it’s important to ask yourself regularly whether or not you’re moving forward or whether you’re drifting back into old habits and behaviours. If you’re not moving forward, something’s holding you back – what or who is it?
  • Develop a Dream Team – gather people into your life, who you know will inspire and support you to change. These may be friends or family members but may also be coaches or YouTube videos of people you find inspiring to watch.
  • Know your Mean Team – identify the people who may want to hold you back. You can’t just drop family members from your life, but if you think there are people who hold you back, think about how you can avoid them for a while or what you can say to them to neutralise their impact on your life. People close to you often feel threatened by change – you will come across critics – your own voices and other peoples. Recognising who they are and having a plan to deal with their comments, really can help to keep you on track. There may be some people that you can simply drop from your life. We often hold onto friendships that have become toxic… learn to let them go.
Now is the time to give yourself the ‘GET OUT OF JAIL FREE’ card…
  • Break down your barriers and enjoy living the life of your dreams.
  • Change your perspective – you may be surprised what you see.
Here’s a great little test:

Have a look at the picture – what do you see?

Scroll down to the very end of this post for the answer…..




what do you see in the picture?
(scroll to the end of the blog – look again – you may be surprised)









Keep scrolling for the answer and then come back and watch this incredibly inspiring video.
This video will really shift your perspective on how you think about life!



ANSWER to the ‘Mystery in the picture’

What did you see? – Did you see the parrot? It looks like a parrot doesn’t it, but now take a closer look….

If you only saw the parrot when you initially looked at the picture (which is what the majority of us see), this shows how our brain is interpreting the clues but in this case adding the 2+2 and getting the answer as 5….. The brain ‘got it wrong’ and sometimes it’s a struggle for us to change the ‘angle’ and find the ‘truth’ about what is really happening in our own lives too.

Can you see the lady who has been ‘body painted’ to look like a parrot?

If you’re really struggling to see the ‘lady’ – start with the end of what looks like the parrot’s tail and see the ‘blue foot’ then work up the leg and the body, to the arm wrapped around her head to form the parrot’s beak..

Hopefully you can now see the painted lady? You thought you saw a parrot and you were wrong. What else might you be thinking you’re right about but maybe you’re not?

Maybe you’ve been wrong about something in your life and changing your belief could open up a whole new world for you to explore! Good Luck…

Change how you think and DISCOVER FREEDOM…
I’d love to hear about your own experiences – Leave me a comment below to start our discussion…


  1. October 19, 2017 / 5:50 am

    Well firstly, I have to say that it took me AGES to see the woman in the picture. All I could see was the parrot until I really focused and then I saw her, every part of her so clearly. What an inspiring post Wendy, your words rang so true and so much of this really resonated with me in a deep way, particularly as I feel like I’m living some of what you mentioned here. Yes, naysayers are no good for us, especially when they’re well meaning family members, but you’re right, the biggest block and hurdle is ourselves and changing our own thoughts.

    Thank you for a bit of a wake up call and thanks also for sharing that amazing video. What an absolute inspiration Sean Stephenson is. Loved what he said and how he lives. And I loved this post. Thank you. xo

    • Wendy
      October 19, 2017 / 11:52 am

      Thanks so much Miriam. The first time I saw that picture, it took me ages to see the lady too.. it’s amazing how our minds work to fill in the pieces from old knowledge when the reality maybe very different… Stay strong and hold your course regardless of the naysayers Miri! … Wow though Sean Stephenson is an inspiration to us all to remind us that we can overcome our hurdles and barriers whatever they are, if we keep focussed on our vision and keep taking action! What an amazing guy. I’m so glad you enjoyed the post Miri! xx

      • October 19, 2017 / 12:03 pm

        I really did enjoy it Wendy, very much. Yes, I’m staying strong though I admit today was a low day so your post was very timely and just what I needed. I’m off to do another meditation before bed. Hugs xo

        • Wendy
          October 19, 2017 / 12:15 pm

          Well I’m just glad it arrived at the right time.. I know the feeling and it was definitely a ‘self help’ post too! Enjoy your meditation.. sleep tight! x

          • October 19, 2017 / 12:51 pm

            I’ve just finished my meditation and soon off to bed. Have a fabulous Thursday and thanks again. xo

          • Wendy
            October 19, 2017 / 8:44 pm

            Good morning Miri and I hope you had a great night sleep – I’ll be off to bed myself shortly.. xx

          • October 19, 2017 / 8:52 pm

            Hey Wendy, we’re like ships that pass in the night! Sleep well my friend as my Friday begins. (P.S I stayed up too late so I’m a bit wrecked this morning, but all for a good cause). Talk soon. xo

  2. October 18, 2017 / 4:53 pm

    Thank you Wendy for another inspirational post. I loved all your tips. Sean Stephenson is fabulous. I liked his quote ” never believe predictions that do not empower you.”

    • Wendy
      October 18, 2017 / 9:08 pm

      I think credit for the inspiration in this post definitely goes to Sean. He is phenomenal isn’t he.. wow! xx

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