Journaling to Find & Fix What's Holding You Back.

It’s something that happens to all of us some time. Losing momentum and feeling a bit lost. 

Sometimes it’s just a temporary thing, but sometimes there’s a strong underlying pull or core issue that holds us back from making our dream life a reality.

Here are some tips & approaches I use when I need to work through what’s holding me back. 

The best way I’ve found to work through things is by getting them down on paper. It can be as scrappy as you like, but there’s something so good about the tactile nature of putting pen to paper in a beautiful journal that I find super helpful – as I know many of you do too.

"The starting point is having clarity about what you want from life."

I describe that as ‘knowing what your dream life looks like’ – and of course that is different for all of us.

 So if you don’t feel clear about the life you want to create – and if that’s what’s holding you back – then the perfect place to start is my favourite dreaming exercise, which you’ll find here in the form of a free audio guide.

 However, if you are clear and it’s just that you’ve lost a bit of momentum – then take some time to reflect and identify what exactly it is that’s holding you back – which is the starting point to working out what to do about it.


"Sometimes it can be outside distractions like other people or work but most of the time in my experience, it’s ourselves who are holding us back."


We do this in many ways, and it usually takes a little bit of inside work to identify the core issue.

I always start with my journal and reflecting on the most important life area, which for me is health.

In my journal I reflect and answer the following sorts of questions:

  • What’s holding me back when it comes to health, wellness and fitness?
  • Am I lacking energy – and if yes, why is that? So, what do I need to do to change it?
  • Am I in a pattern of exercising, eating & drinking well?
  • Is lack of sleep holding me back? What can I do about that?
  • Am I drinking enough water? A simple change to drinking at least 2 litres of water a day can change the way you feel and get you back on track. Dehydration effects our energy so much and just simply starting to track water intake can make a massive difference. 

And then I do similar for each key area of my life. Letting the blank pages of my journal be the place I pour out how I’m feeling and the place I answer key questions. Journaling for clarity.


What’s holding me back in my career or business?

  • Am I too busy being busy?
  • Am I bored?
  • What do I need to change that I can control?
  • Do I need upskill or am I ready to do something completely different? 
  • What do I spend most of my time thinking about in this area?


What’s holding me back with my finances?

  • Am I clear on what my financial dreams or goals are?
  • Do I have a budget to help get me there?
  • How could I push aside what’s holding me back?


What’s holding me back in my relationships? This can include your partner, your children, your parents, your friends or your colleagues.

  • Am I spending enough time with like-minded people for inspiration?
  • How do I need to behave to get the most from these relationships?
  • What’s holding me back from behaving that way?


What’s holding me back when it comes to self-care?

  • Sometimes the smallest tweak can make a big difference.
  • Am I spending enough time alone?
  • What does self-care mean for me right now?
  • What could I do to take better care of me so I can be all I need to be for others?
  • What’s holding me back from doing that?
  • How can I move forward on this, even just a little? 


And while we are on self-care, what’s holding me back from following a morning and night ritual?  

  • How could I set up my days better in the morning? When will I get up and when do I need to get to sleep to get up at that time?
  • How could I end the days better in the evening? Can I incorporate a gratitude practice or a daily wins practice to round out my days better?
  • What would I love as my morning and night rituals?
  • Where could I get inspiration on that?
  • What’s stopping me?


What’s holding me back when it comes to having fun?

  • When was the last time I had genuine beautiful fun?
  • What makes me happy?
  • How can I do that more?


What’s holding me back when it comes to creating healthy habits and removing ones that are no longer serving me?

  • Where do I need to start and what support do I need to stick to them?


What’s holding me back when it comes to personal growth?

  • Do I need to read more? Listen to inspiring podcasts? If yes, when will I do it?
  • Am I spending enough time around other people who are interested in growing?
  • Are there relationships in my life that are holding me back from growing? If yes, what options do I have to change that?


"It all starts with reflection and awareness – and journaling is perfect for that. Take time now to put a day and time in your diary to do it."


I hope that sharing the above with you helps you identify anything holding you back and inspires you to take action. And take a moment to reflect on these wise words…


“Knowing yourself is the beginning of all wisdom.”


 “You will never change your life until you change something you do daily.”


“The secret of success is found in your daily routine.”


I’d LOVE to know what’s holding you back and what you’ll do about it – so please let me know in the comments section below. Sharing with like-minded people is inspiring for us all.

And if you'd like to hear my recent podcast episode 'What's Holding You Back?' click here.

And as always, if you need some support – you can join my Personal Growth / Book Club GROW, my Habit Club or my Online Dream Life Course. Or visit to learn more.


…and browse our beautiful journals here if you need a new one.


Dream Life Founder  




  • Take your first step to getting clarity on what you want from life with this free bonus dreaming exercise here 101 Dreams Audio Guide 
  • Learn more about my Personal Growth / Book Club - GROWhere.
  • Learn more about my Habit Clubhere.
  • Find yourself a beautiful new personalised journal here.

Leave a comment

Please note, comments must be approved before they are published

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy Policy and Terms of Service apply.