How To Stop Holding Yourself Back

stop holding yourself back

Struggling with showing up for yourself? Don’t know what to do in service to the person you’re becoming today? Here is how you can stop holding yourself back.

“I’m not the kind of person who…”

I was surprised to hear these were familiar words from my mentor Tara McMullin as she kicked off a CreativeLive class about leveling up your business.

Surprised because you don’t often hear the ‘internal demons’ of people who are successful. The ones you look up to as mentors and guides and teachers.

But it’s comforting to hear there’s a universality to how we approach challenges, resistance, and growth.

And I find normalizing our internal struggles is the way we develop a growth mindset in the relationship with ourself and determine how we show up for our life and our dreams.

Those words, “I’m not the kind of person who…” they ring so true for so many of us!

I’ve been there.

Too many times to count.

I’m sure you’ve been there too.

For me it shows up like this.

I’m not the kind of person who: runs in races, is the CEO of a business, keeps an organized house, maintains a healthy diet…

stop holding yourself back

Recognize where you are holding yourself back

But little by little I’ve been chipping away at each of these stories and finding the places where I’ve been making EXCUSES. The excuses that hold me back and grant me permission to fail on meeting my commitments and goals.

One of my biggest takeaways from that Creative Live class?

You have to live the life of the person you dream of becoming today.

Want to write a book? You have to commit time daily to writing.

Want to run that half marathon? You have to register for that race and commit to the intense training schedule.

Want to start or grow your business? You have to take the first steps investing in the training or mentoring that will teach where you’re falling short.

Stop holding yourself back.

It’s that simple.

And it isn’t simple at all once.

The journey to get where you want to go is never straight. There will be twists and turns and bumps along the way.

But the more you show up for yourself, stop holding yourself back, and live like that person you long to be, the easier it becomes to face challenges when they cross your path.

What Does Showing Up For Yourself Look Like In Life?

Last week I jumped on the treadmill (reluctantly at first) to run 5 miles. I’m training for my first half marathon. Truth be told I was more motivated by earning Weight Watchers points to indulge in a delicious dinner than by finishing my 13.1 mile race. HA!

But committing to that hour of running time was living the life I dream. It was showing myself I can do hard things. And take the small steps to attain big goals. Crossing the 5 mile milestone gets me closer to believing that YES! I am the person that runs in half marathon races.

This is even after some twists and turns (literally) of spraining an ankle and breaking a foot at the start of my training a few short months ago.

It would’ve been easy to give up at that point.

But I didn’t.

Because I asked myself what a person training for races does.

They heal, and start again.

What Does Showing Up For Yourself Look Like In Business?

7 years ago I saw a vision for a local photography class. I called it Momtography®. It was very much a passion project. I was blogging a tiny bit.

I was failing at running a small family photography business (i.e. no one was booking photo sessions).

But I loved to teach (I worked in an elementary school as a technology trainer at the time) so I thought maybe just maybe teaching photography would feel better than being the one taking the pictures.

So I showed up for myself and wrote a curriculum for a 3 hour class while on maternity leave with a newborn.

I felt like such an imposter as I announced that first class.

But during that time I also heard the advice to ‘fake it till you make it’. To show up like a person that owns and runs a successful business teaching photography to women.

I sold 10 spots in 24 hours.

My goal was to connect with my own love of photography in service to helping other women find their passion for photography too.

It worked.

I now spend my days teaching women that they can use creativity to find an identity beyond their role as mom.

Because I showed up for myself then, and found the places where my skills and passion intersect — I now get to call Momtography® a full time job.

This year the vision expands as Momtography® goes well beyond a passion project and into a national program with licensed teachers across the United States.

It would’ve been easy to stop trying when my photography business was failing.

But I didn’t.

Because I asked myself what a person who wants to own a business does.

They experiment, pivot, and try again.

What kind of person are you?

When I mentor creative women with big hearts and big dreams, we begin first with questions instead of answers.

When you think about your life or business….

What passions are you sitting on or resisting?

Where are you holding yourself back?

Where are you making excuses?

What small step can you take today to live like that person you long to become?

Curiosity and questioning around the truth of who you are is how you allow yourself to become the person you long to be.

They way you stop holding yourself back?

It’s to get 100% honest with yourself.






What will you do in service to yourself and the person you’re becoming today?

Go do that.

Don’t hold back.