WHAT IS INNER WORK? In conversation with a dear friend a few weeks ago, I said something like ‘…I guess it’s improved a bit after the inner work I’ve done.’ The phrase just sort of rolled off my tongue.
But afterward I thought about what that term really brings to mind for me. I thought back – particularly to years past – when I would hear someone say it, or when I would read it somewhere.
~ it seemed mysterious: inner work presumably to be done inside ourselves? how does one even do that? aren’t we just who we are?
~ I imagined hours of meditation or sitting in silence
~ I thought of routines and rituals, and the requirement of establishing a daily meditation practice (not sure why meditating figured so prominently for me with this…)
~ I thought it was likely asking oneself all kinds of hard questions and struggling to find answers
~ i thought it might have been a sort of personal ‘homework’ – assignments to be done, digging deep into the ‘why’ of everything
~ it sounded pretty difficult and kind of a drag. I already had a day job – why would I want to do more work?
But what is it, really?
HERE’S MY TAKE ON INNER WORK, after many years of doing inner work without even realizing it or calling it that:
~ it isn’t any one thing nor the same things for everyone
~ it can as simple as observing oneself, bringing awareness to what we’re doing / thinking / saying, or how we’re feeling or reacting. So much of what we do becomes automatic and subconsciously driven, simply becoming aware is incredibly valuable. From this comes self-discovery.
~ it can be the discovery of peace where there once was unrest or discontent
~ it can be finding more compassion – for yourself and others
~ it can be releasing fears that aren’t serving you
~ it can be adjusting beliefs, changing behaviours or reactions
~ it can be the release of emotions – there could be tears, or great joy or wonder at a-ha moments
~ it doesn’t have to involve special practices or rituals, nor sessions with expensive practitioners (or it might)
~ it doesn’t have to involve journaling (but it might)
~ it doesn’t have to involve hours of meditation (there might be some or none)
~ it can be as simple as loving yourself a little more.
INNER WORK IS JUST A FANCY TERM for looking inside ourselves a little more. It’s the process of growing and changing and becoming a little more aware of what makes us ‘tick’ – and perhaps seeking to tweak things a bit so that we feel better and more content about how we’re showing up in the world.
Wishing you a day of discovering a little more about what makes you ‘tick.’ ❤
Photo by Michael Judkins, pexels(dot)com.