Get Up and Go – The things that hold you back

Self-doubt plays a part in stopping you having Agency. But it’s only part of the problem.

The world about you is conspiring to hold you back. Your friends (yes), your parents, your children and your boss. It’s the TV channels, and the ever so cunning TV commercials. It’s the unfair ways society is structured. Unless you’re born with a silver spoon in your mouth, life is conspiring to hold you back.

Too many ‘gurus’ say lack of confidence is holding you back. They will give you tips for boosting your self confidence. And with that, they say, you will succeed. There’s an element of truth about that. Lack of confidence holds us back.

But lack of confidence is only the current state of mind. It doesn’t look at what has caused that. And it’s not the only factor.

There are people and systems that militate against you succeeding. And repeated encounters with those people and systems will reinforce your lack of self belief.

So we’re going to look at the people and systems that are keeping you down.

Some gurus will tell you to find strength inside yourself, and that it’s easy to blame others. But the truth is, your lack of agency, lack of self belief, is caused by outside factors. And until you can identify them, you can’t prosper.

In the world of voodoo, people stick pins in dolls that represent their enemies. And while that is supposed to cause their enemies pain, it also psychologically reduces their hold over you. I’m not suggesting you stick pins in dolls, but releasing others’ hold over you is a mighty powerful tool.

The people that have a hold over you:

  • Your parents
  • Your siblings
  • Your friends
  • Your work colleagues
  • Your boss or bosses
  • Your spouse or partner

Your past experiences:

  • Your experiences at school

 And the systems that control you:

  • Your gender (unless you’re male)
  • Your colour (unless you’re white)
  • Your class (unless middle or upper-midddle class)
  • Your place of birth (unless you’re from an affluent or middle class area).

George Bernard Shaw said, ‘A Englishman only has to open his mouth for another Englishman to despise him’, and it’s true. The same discrimination applies to people of colour, to women, the disabled, and people from ‘the provinces’.

Across the medieval world, men were buried with weapons, while women were buried with their necklaces and brooches. Some attitudes to women haven’t changed much over the years.

You need to find out who and what is manipulating you; and how to regain control over your life. And lack of Agency is something I see all the time – people who don’t take the necessary action to change their lives for the better.

Did I omit your One Big Change? Email me at If I get enough requests I may add it here.

With best wishes
Kit Sadgrove
Founder, Get Up And Go

Do you want help with achieving change in your life? We have a coaching programme that could help you. Learn more.