The inner self is hidden from view. We think we know it but we know only the surface like the surface of a ball. We know what we are thinking. The stream of conscious. But what is motivating us is hidden. But we can know to what basic rules for living we are committed to. Alexander the Great was asked how he accomplished so much. He gave a rule of living. What needed doing he did right away without delay. That is he had a short term commitment that corresponded with his long term commitment to take over the entire world.
When the world I knew was caving in around me I needed a basic rule for living. That is to say the truth at all cost. These kinds of rules we choice for how we live determine in the long run who we really are.