Do you sometimes wonder what are you truly capable of? Whether the place you are in right now is what you should settle for?

I believe the word potential is a great one, full of hope. It means what is possible for you, not what your situation is right now.

Individuals who wish to excel in any field of endeavour face a challenge, whether it be sport, business, or the arts – and that is to repeatedly bring out the potential in themselves.

But how often do we turn up and deliver at that level?

I believe that it is vital to realise that potential comes from the “Inside-Out”. It is no different if you are a student, an athlete or a CEO.

Far too often we look outside of ourselves for a quick fix, a ‘life hack’ or a chance occurrence to change our circumstances or our level of performance.

The truth is that the secrets to how we can continually excel in life are not something we have to acquire or that can be found outside of us – they are accessed within and as such are within reach of us all of the time.

Within us we all have in built machinery, resources that can power us to experience what we are capable of, and it is waiting to be used at any-time. I call this our “inner-zone”.

Our inner-zone contains all of the resources to deliver what we are capable of, but sadly seldom produce. It’s like having a Ferrari in the garage under a cover. It comes out on the odd occasion on seemingly random intervals and we get a snippet of the feeling of power, control and enjoyment that is available to us. It is exhilarating compared with the Toyota Corolla you drive most of the time. Most of us ignore the Ferrari in the driveway and prefer the safety of the Corolla.

It is a universal fact that we all have these moments in our life where we are at our very best.

These moments have famously been labelled as being ‘in the flow’ by the Russian Psychologist Mihaly Csikszentmihayli. They are moments when you have accessed your inner-zone, and while they can be few and far between in our lives, they are there if you know what to look for. Think about moments in your life where:

  • You are doing something incredibly well.
  • You are doing something that captivates your attention and focus. This activity “sparks joy” within.
  • You excel at these times by using natural abilities that you possess. So there is an irony in that you aren’t really trying that hard – you are in a zone of effortlessness.
  • You have a reason or a purpose in these moments which are not related to anything extrinsic. The motivation is intrinsic (you have your own drivers) and this is far more powerful than any bonus cheque or adulation. You would be drawn to engaging in the activity regardless of extrinsic motivators.
  • In a sense you enter a zone where you lose yourself – you are no longer worried or self-conscious, you are deeply in the present moment.
  • Your sense of time is altered and can speed up or slow down..
  • You may describe the feeling as spiritual, where you can enter a trance like state of being “whole”, “one” “in-synch”, “in-unison”.


It is in these moments when we can clearly see our potential. We become aware of what is under the bonnet of the Ferrari and how we are uniquely wired.

In my experience as a coach the majority of people’s inner-zone is a mystery to them. They have no idea of the incredible potential that is inside of them. What is required is an audit to take stock of what is actually under the bonnet – the activities that they enjoy most, the strengths they possess, the passions that bring them to life, the motivations that drive them, the identity that is their true self and the purpose that sets their direction for fulfilment.

Once a person begins to see what they have under the bonnet and sit in their Ferrari intentionally for the first time, get ready! Changes start to happen. Their mindset opens up. They start to imagine possibilities. Their physical appearance changes and the light re-enters their eyes. Real life begins as they grasp their potential and turn up ready to go.

If you have experienced your InnerZone share your comment here or you can email me at

Keep an eye out for our next post in which we will explore the neuro-scientific evidence behind the InnerZone.

Richard Burton – InnerZone Founder and CEO

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