Stepping Back: The Secret Formula You Need to Move Forward

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You can never predict what life will throw at you – some of us are able to carry on regardless and feel that there is nothing stopping us, but then there are some of us who will find ourselves are standing at a crossroads quite literally not knowing what way to turn.

There is a saying which I love – “sometimes you need to take a step back to move forwards” – these words couldn’t be truer and I want you all to keep these at the forefront of your mind throughout this article.

To categorise myself, I have always been that person who is very headstrong, driven and determined however I also enjoy the comfort of an everyday routine, my role as a mummy and going to a job that I love. It was after a major operation at the beginning of 2020 when taking a step back became a reality that I was reluctant to accept.

Throughout my recovery, there was a nagging thought at the back of my mind I had never had before – was there something I was missing? I couldn’t put my finger on it. Life at home was perfect, my job was amazing, so what was it? 

To be honest with you, I was afraid of unlocking what the answer to that question was. The thought of not knowing where this road would potentially lead me put me off even wanting to look into it and I continued to ignore the persistent voice in my head which questioned my reality. I suddenly remembered a colleague of mine once recommending a book – Feel the Fear and Do it Anyway, by Susan Jeffers. Boy was it life changing and it was this book which taught me not be afraid to press the reset button.

It was then, during my recovery, that I realised I needed to take a step back and really look at myself. As a result, I can now say that I am a stronger person today, not only for me but for my family. So what exactly happened and what steps did I follow in taking a step back to be able to move forwards in ways I never thought possible?

  1. Awareness
  2. Reflect
  3. Recharge
  4. Reconnect with yourself


The first step to taking a step back in order to move forward is self-awareness. Looking into the mirror can be daunting but to be able to truly move forward, you need to acknowledge your faults, your flaws and the areas in which you need to change. Realising, knowing and accepting that you need to take a step back is the biggest step you can take for yourself.


Reflecting on your past is crucial and I found that writing down all aspects of my life to identify where there were gaps was imperative to a positive outcome. This time of reflection allowed me to analyse objectively the areas where I needed to improve to enable greater inner peace and happiness and to bring me back to me ‘why’.


Taking a moment to recharge. It was the simple things helped me, I didn’t need to attend an expensive retreat or sign up to a course which helped me to ‘discover myself’. Meditation in the morning and before bed was something I could easily incorporate into my life and use as time for me, no kids, no husband, no emails, just me.

Reconnecting with yourself

Sometimes life really does take over and taking the time to take a step back will always benefit you whether it’s looking at your personal life, looking at the job you’re in or whether it’s just seeing where life is taking you.

The COVID-19 pandemic has taught me a lot about myself and given me the opportunity to realise that I can be a mummy and be someone who can really push boundaries on my own terms simultaneously.

A quote which I love is; “One can choose to go back toward safety or forward toward growth. Growth must be chosen again and again; fear must be overcome again and again.” – Abraham Maslow.

My parting words to you all are don’t be afraid to want to take that step back – step back, reflect and reconnect with yourself, you’ll be amazed to see what you will find.

Written by Davina Soochit, EA at Egon Zehnder.