Centuries ago, Plutarch said: What we achieve inwardly will change outer reality. This ancient wisdom reaffirms how important is self-awareness and exploration. Growth starts within and then manifests outward.

A young woman I coach pro bono observed that her outer life is still the same even though her inner world is totally different. I assured her that outer changes will come. She will act when the time is right, because she is making ready internally.

When she expressed frustration that she’s not taking action, I observed that she actually is taking a lot of action. Right now, her goal is to find her purpose, and she is taking action to discover it, via taking classes and coaching.

“Being in action” isn’t necessarily or even primarily about the end result, it’s about engaging in the process of discovery that leads to achieving the desired goal/end result. I’ve also found that the goal can change through my action and interaction with the universe in pursuit of self-knowledge and discovery. Again, my inward achievement is reflected in my outer reality, actions and choices.

So the moral of the story is that if you feel stuck, it is probably time to do some inner work. Shifting internally will result in external shifts.