This post may contain affiliate links. You can read my affiliate policy here.
Do you have goals you want to achieve, but you seem to completely lack the willpower to reach them? Do you know what you should do, but even though you really want it, it just doesn’t seme to happen for you? Are your really good at a lot of things but this one thing seems to be impossible for you? If this is you, it’s time to consider what inner work you can do to achieve your goal.
Doing ‘outer work’, like learning how to improve and implement new habits, is key to any change, but sometimes the change that’s needed is deeper, and we need to do the inner work, as well as the outer work, to get to a new future. Let’s explore inner work and how it can help us create the life we want!
What is Inner Work?
Inner work is about what’s going on inside you, about understanding why you do the things you do. It’s about getting to know yourself and learning to approach yourself with kindness and compassion.
We are all a combination of feelings (both those hidden and those in plain sight), thoughts, beliefs, and memories. We all have hidden strengths and hidden weaknesses.
What Inner Work to Do?
There is a lot of different types of inner work you can do depending on your purpose of diving inwards. If you are struggling with serious issues such as insomnia, addiction and other self-destructive behaviour, or you have high level of anxiety or panic, I do recommend you seek professional help to support the inner work you need to do.
If, however, you are wanting to use inner work to achieve goals that are seeming just out of reach, there are two types of inner work that can be very helpful:
Inner Work to Identify Your True Goals
One of the reasons we keep feeling like we fail to achieve our goals is because the goals weren’t truly important to us in the first place. There is a lot of factors, other than our true selves, that influence what we think we should achieve.
Think about what you are trying to achieve. Where does these ideas come from? Is it something that comes from parents or teachers growing up? Are you trying to please a partner or impress your friends?
Is what you are trying to achieve truly important to YOU or is it something you feel you should do?
By doing inner work to identify your core values and the direction you want your life to take, and to make this vision of the future as clear as possible in your mind, you are much more likely to achieve your goals because you can feel deep within you how important they are to you, which will influence your habits, your choices, and in time, your entire future.
Inner Work to Remove Limiting Beliefs
Limiting beliefs are false thoughts and beliefs that we experience as absolute truths and therefore never question. They usually come either from our childhood when our brains have readily believed what we were told, or came to its own conclusions about the world, in a way that no longer serves us.
Limiting beliefs can also be formed in adulthood, especially if repeated often enough by someone close to us, like a partner, boss, or don’t forget – ourselves talking down to us!
The only thing that’s keeping you from getting what you want is the story you keep telling yourselfTony Robbins
Examples of Limiting Beliefs
- I’m not smart / pretty / talented / confident / fit / strong enough.
- I don’t have enough time / money / experience / confidence to pursue my passion.
- I should avoid failure at all costs.
- I’m not worthy of being loved / safe / successful.
- I’m not good with money / languages / math / sticking to a diet / exercise.
- It’s rude not to finish all the food on my plate.
- I’m bad at …. that’s just a fact.
Recognise any of these?
Can you see that if you believe any of these to be an absolute truth it will hold you back from making the changes you need to achieve your goals?
By challenging your limiting beliefs, by examining them and testing if they are really true, you can remove limiting beliefs that don’t serve you and this will make it a lot easier to achieve your goals and change your life!
What could you do if you no longer had your limiting belief?
Why Do Inner Work?
Most of us are not keen on doing inner work. It sounds like, well, work. And it’s true, inner work is hard. But it can be absolutely necessary to be able to move forward.
If you truly believe that you are not worthy of success, will you ever succeed?
If you fail to be the perfect school mum, always looking perfect dropping your kids of, baking for every bake sale and volunteering for everything and anything, have you really failed if this is not your true priority? (And could that energy have been used to work on something that’s really important to you?!?)
If you are trying to lose weight but you believe it’s the hight of rudeness to not finish the food in front of you, will you ever lose weight?
By doing inner work you are exploring what is the inner you. You are learning why you feel and believe like you do. You learn to approach yourself with compassion and kindness instead of beating yourself up. And maybe most importantly, you learn what your core values are, and how to create a future you can’t wait to live.
Why Inner Work is Important
Still not convinced that inner work is worth it? Does the whole idea of inner work make you feel uncomfortable or even afraid? Or do you dismiss it out of hand?
‘Yes, sure, that’s a great thing to do, and I’m sure it’s helpful for some people, but I know myself and I don’t need all that.’
There is a reason you are reading this article. There is something in your life you have tried to change but you never seem to get it right. You have probably tried a lot of different things to change it. Spent a lot of your time, energy, and possibly also your money to find a solution that works.
But nothing does, at least not long term.
Now, consider what will happen if you continue as you have been. Keep banging your head against the wall. Spending your energy trying to achieve someone else’s goals or trying to change something without challenging your limiting belief.
What Will Your Future Look Like Without Inner Work?
Consider what will your life look like in 5 years, 10 years, or 20 years, if you don’t make any changes:
- What will happen if you keep gaining weight?
- Who will you become if you keep beating yourself up for failing?
- What is your future if you continue to spend more than you earn?
- If you keep drinking more than you should?
- Or if you never exercise, even to take a walk around the park?
Maybe, just maybe, the effort of doing inner work, of getting to know yourself better and learning to be kind to yourself, is worth it considering? Consider what will happen if you continue as you have been and ask yourself if that is really the future you want for yourself and for your loved ones.
You have the option to change, but it may take some inner work to get there.
Will You Do The Inner Work You Need to Do to Achieve Your True Goals?
Now it’s your turn. Are you ready to start a journey of change? To create a life that is in line with your values? To change direction in life to one that’s in line with what you really want for yourself and your loved ones? To challenge your limiting beliefs and become free to achieve anything you set your mind to?
Jump over to 7 Inner Work Exercises: 1 Week to a Better Life to get started today!
If you just want to dip your toes, a great place to start is with identifying your core values. Download the core values worksheet below and start considering what is most important in your life. And not to worry, there is a list of core values to get you started!