What’s Holding You Back?

Are you where you want to be, where you thought you would be? Most of us — including me — would respond with a quick and an emphatic ‘no.’ There is more I want to do and more I know I can do. There are still mountains to climb, oceans to swim, and for me, songs to write. So, when should I start making that change? How about now! 

I have found that the best time to face my challenges is now. So here are three insights I have to offer: the three C’s that I frequently fight with.

  1. Lack of CONVICTION: There are several reasons why this continually hinders my progress. Sometimes it’s a belief in myself and my talent, and sometimes it’s just that I’m not fully committed to the project I’m working on.
  2. Lack of CONFIDENCE: People in the entertainment business refer to this condition as the “Imposter syndrome.” They just know that someday they will be found out for the fraud that they are. They have been faking it all along, but soon their luck will run out.
  3. Lack of ability to CONNECT: The difference between communicating and connecting is immense, and it plays a huge part in our ability to work with people and engage with an audience. Communicating is about having people work for you, while connecting is about having people work with you. That is a big difference.

Here is what I’ve found is the good news to my dilemma: The more I understand my hesitations, the reason for my lack of conviction, confidence, or connect ability, the faster I can face the problem and move forward.


  • Develop your Positive Attitude: Stop your negative talk. There is always something positive in any project that you can latch onto. 
  • Take the time to develop your project, so it best reflects your beliefs and talents.
  • Purposefully give it your total commitment. “A total commitment is paramount to reaching the ultimate in performance.” – Tom Flores 



  • Easier said than done but listen to people with an open mind and heart. Work at understanding their perspective and be willing to change your mind.
  • Be curious about the other person on more than just a work level. Get to know who they are outside the confines of the office.
  • “Communication is merely an exchange of information, but connection is an exchange of our humanity.” Sean Stephenson 

Let’s build Conviction through Confidence, so we can truly Connect.

Phillip J Martin

Exploring the Power of People

You succeed by choice, not chance.
Every decision you make shapes your future

Phil is a published playwright and song writer and an award-winning television writer for the Nashville Now show on TNN. He has spent 30 years as a college professor, most recently in the Department of Theatre Arts at Edgewood College in Madison, Wisconsin. He has presented at colleges, universities, conventions and symposiums across the country. In addition to writing 13 musicals, Phil has written two books: Play Hard-Have Fun: A Philosophy for Life and the soon-to-be completed Take the Stage: Leadership Lesson from Theatre. Phil believes that achieving personal and professional success requires the challenge of creative and innovative thinking, that you succeed by choice, not chance.

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