Breaking Through Blocks and Self-Doubt

August 2, 2020 3 min read 4 Comments
Artist: Iuliastration

A block is a limiting belief, habit, or behaviour that gets in the way of achieving your goals. Usually blocks are routed in fear and self-doubt and come up to try and keep us in our comfort zones.

For me, my biggest block is my inner critic, or negative thoughts and stories I tell myself. Some examples are:

“I can’t”

“That’s too hard”

“I don’t know how”

“People will judge me”

“I’m probably going to fail”

“Who am I to do that?”

“I’m bad at that”

“It won’t make a difference any way”

“What’s the point?”

“I have no idea what I’m doing”

Blocks can also be habits and behaviours like over spending, over eating, staying up too late, and self-sabotage.


There is an exercise I learned from Brooke Castillo on the Life Coach School Podcast that helps you break through your blocks, in particular the ones that keep you stuck in self-doubt.

It’s pretty simple.

  1. Create a list and write down all the blocks, limiting beliefs, fears, and doubts that come up when you set a goal. How are you keeping yourself in your comfort zone? Why?
  2. Then, pretend to be your future self that has already accomplished what you want. What does this person look like? What did you have to overcome to get to this point? How does it feel to reach your goal?
  3. Go through your list of blocks and address each and every one as this future version of yourself. How did you overcome each of these obstacles?

For example: when I started this blog I didn’t know where to begin and I easily got overwhelmed. My biggest blocks were “I have no idea what I’m doing”, “this is hard”, and “I suck at this”. I was also really concerned about what others would think and this kept me stuck for a long time. In fact, it took me a whole year to even start because it was so out of my comfort zone. When I did this exercise I imagined coming from a place where I already finished building my blog and then wrote a note to myself addressing each of these blocks as if my success was inevitable. I wrote things like, “learning something new is hard and it takes time. It’s unrealistic to think that there won’t be challenges. Break everything down and do one thing at a time. It might take longer then you would like but you will get there eventually. If it were easy everyone would be doing it! Don’t worry about criticism or judgement because your message will reach those who need it the most and that is what’s important.”

In a way you are kind of creating an action plan as well as giving yourself a bit of a pep talk. Anytime I hit a block or get wrapped up in self-doubt I did this exercise in my journal and even in my head. It gave me the courage I needed to push forward and get shit done.

Let me know if you give this a try and how it goes for you!


  • Tammy September 15, 2020 at 1:54 am

    I can truly relate to this post. I go through the same self-doubts and I am learning how to overcome them. I will have to give this a try. Your blog is really good, keep on writing. 🙂

    • The First Cup co September 15, 2020 at 5:20 am

      Thank you Tammy! Learning how to overcome self-doubt is such a gift. I hope this exercise helps xx

  • film modu December 10, 2020 at 4:58 pm

    Thanks so much for the article. Thanks Again. Much obliged. Berna Allyn Olli

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