You might be asking what an Inner Child is? How do I know if I have one? Well first off we all have an inner child. You see, our inner child is with us even when we grow into the adults we are today. I think we know as adults that how we are raised plays a big part in who we are today, but I am not sure that many of us understand that bettering the relationship with our inner child can help us become a better person. Our inner child is responsible for our involuntary joy, intelligence, overall sense of well being, and the way we express ourselves.
The inner child in us is desired to be loved, cared, and nurtured. Sometimes, growing up those needs fell short from the ones that raised and guided us. Now that we are adults, it is up to us to re-parent our inner child.
'It sounds corny, but I've promised my inner child that never again will I ever abandon myself for anything or anyone else again.' - Wynonna Judd
Broken Inner Child
Inevitably in the process of growing up, most of us undergo some incident of fear in our childhood. It could be a single incident, but it's our first taste of rejection, let down, abandonment, or failure from adults around us. The way our parents or the ones that guided speak to us as a child become our inner voices as adults. We continue to talk to our inner child-like those adults who spoke to us when we were young.
Inner Child Coping
When a child experiences fear rejection or abandonment for the first time, they don't have enough intelligence to understand or process it. These will start to show in the child as fear ( feminine ) or anger (masculine).
The child develops unhealthy coping skills to numb the pain. Over time these become habits of overeating, pornography, dependent relationships, or violence.
Losing Touch With Our Inner Child
As we start to take more on life as young adults and into our later years in life, we begin to move away from our inner child. We start working, have bills to pay, take on other responsibilities, you know that not so fun things in life. This is normal, but what we forget is there is a child inside us that needs attention. Making time for our inner child is very important. Did you know the person you speak to most often is yourself? Pay attention to the tone and words you are using.
'Caring for your inner child has a powerful and surprisingly quick result: Do it and the child heals.' - Martha Beck
Healing Your Inner Child
As I started to look into and research healing the inner child, I stumbled on a technique called "Re-parenting." To put it in simpler terms, it means to re-establish the connection with your inner child and become a loving parent.
Reparenting: • Giving yourself the nurturing, affection, and recognition, you need to heal your inner child. • Giving yourself the guidance, direction, and self-discipline required to gain self-control and to accept personal responsibility for your own life. • Letting go of self-pity over your being neglected or abused as a child and taking charge of your life. • Creating a bond between the adult you and the inner child you to give you a sense of security, self-confidence, and self-worth. • Accepting yourself the way you are in a certain way with no regrets or self-hatred over what you "should" have been.
Source: James J Messina, Ph.D., a psychologist the internet.
Expressing Your Inner Child
Let your inner child go outside and play. The key is to let your inner child have fun, take on a new hobby, have craft night once a week, draw or paint. The key is to make your inner child creative and free. Don't be critical of what you are creating, let it flow, and enjoy the moment you are having.
"Let your child go and play with the other children. Let your child dance. Let your child feel safe and free. Let your child be all that it ever wanted to be." - Louise Hay
The Journey of Your Inner Child
Healing the inner child is a process that gets better over time. Life isn't static, and neither is parenting your inner child. Give your inner child permission to feel and express those feelings. Be there to guide your inner child through them. Enjoy the journey of getting to know your inner child more. In all they are responsible for who you are becoming to today, continue to strengthen that bond.
I would love to hear your story and journey; please leave a comment below.
How does the "wounded child" come into being?
The "wounded child" comes into being by
A denial of true feelings.
A denial of the person we are.
Trying hard to live up to others' expectations.
Holding back our child-like responses, while we provide adult-like responses to stress.
The Fear of being "found out" about how we feel.
Insecurity amid chaos, confusion or the vacuum of repressed feelings.
A sense of obligation to always "look good" and "be good."
Inexperience at being loved for "who you are" rather than for "what you do."
Not being given the role model of how to "enjoy" life and to have "fun."
A lack of encouragement to broaden our scope of vision about the "potentials" in life.
The stress of staying vigilantly in the "here and now" so that we remain in control and the "walls didn't come tumbling down" around us.
Silencing our "inner child" and guarding ourselves, retreating behind "masked" barriers.
Feeling that it is not safe to grow up, to accept love or to share feelings.
Source: James J Messina, PhD, a psychologist from the internet
What are the signs of activity of the "inner child"?
We know our "inner child" is active when we:
Lose ourselves in frolic and fun. * Cry at a romantic movie or TV show.
Enjoy playing with children's toys.
Love visiting theme parks designed for children.
Cry or grieve as adults for the losses we experienced in our past.
Experience the same intensity of feeling we had as children as we role-play or act out experiences from our past.
— source: James J Messina, PhD, a psychologist the internet.
What are the negative consequences of suppressing the "inner child"?
When as adults we choose to delete the memory, needs, and desires of the "inner child," we run the risk of
Never learning how to feel normal.
Never learning how to play and have fun.
Never learning how to relax and manage stress.
Never learning how to appreciate life. We would instead work at living.
Taking ourselves too seriously.
Feeling guilty over not being good enough, driving ourselves to work harder to be good enough.
Not enjoying our family life with our children.
Being suspicious of people who enjoy life, have fun and know how to play.
Social isolation, afraid to get involved with other people for fear we will be found out to be inadequate, not average or a misfit
— source: James J Messina, PhD a psychologist the internet.
What nurturing messages can you give your "inner child"?
You can tell your "inner child" that it is OK to:
Have the freedom to make choices for itself.
Be "selfish" and do the things you want to do.
Take the time to do the things you want to do..
Accept some people and to reject others.
Give and accept love from others.
Allow someone else to care for you.
Enjoy the fruits of your labor with no guilt feelings.
Take time to play and have fun each day.
Set limits on how you are going to relate to others.
Be in charge of your life and not let others dictate to you.
Be honest with others about your thoughts and feelings.
Take risks and to suffer the positive or negative consequences of such risks.
Make mistakes, laugh at them and carry on.
Let your imagination and creativity be set free and to soar with the eagles.
Cry, hurt and to be in pain as long as you share your feelings; do not repress or suppress them.
Be angry, to express your anger and to bring your passion to some resolution.
Make decisions for yourself.
Be a problem-solver and come up with solutions with which everyone may not agree.
Feel happiness, joy, excitement, pleasure and about living.
Feel down, blue, sad, anxious, upset and worried, as long as you share your feelings
— source: James J Messina, PhD a psychologist the internet