What is an inner child and what does it know?
Our inner child is a part of ourselves that’s been present ever since we were conceived, through utero and all the developing years after when we were young and developing into tender selves: baby, infant, toddler, young child and middle school year. The inner child can often recall good experiences as well as childhood fears, traumas, neglect or significant loss.
Each one of us has an “inner child” living inside.
You have an inner child. I have an inner child. We all do. Your “inner child” is a part of your subconscious that has been picking up messages way before it was able to fully process what was going on (mentally and emotionally). It holds emotions, memories and beliefs from the past as well as hopes and dreams for the future.
Here are some signs if you and your inner child are disconnected:
- Feelings of shame, guilt and/or pain.
- Chronic overworking and needing to achieve (to get approval or belonging)
- Inability to be present at the moment.
- Regular anxiety and fear.
- Rigid and trying to be “perfect” (cannot handle a failure).
- Difficulty noticing and celebrating “wins” in life (no win will ever be enough).
- Unhealthy relationship patterns and/or avoiding relationships and love.
- Self-sabotage and obsessive/addictive behaviours.
- Rumination and negative self-talk.
Relationship with your Inner Child
Two steps are important here:
- ONE : Getting in touch with your inner child, beginning a dialogue, and developing a relationship with it.
- TWO: Beginning to really listen in, and learn about your inner child’s needs, pains, hopes, and dreams…..and taking steps to make them happen.
Here are my top 3 favourite ways to start connecting with your inner child deeper
- Acknowledge your inner child :Try to acknowledge your childhood self and let them know that you’re there. When you do, treat them with the love, kindness, and respect they (and you) deserve
- Listen to your inner child: Acknowledging your inner child also means listening to them. This helps you connect the past to the present. Try to listen to how your childhood self felt. Did they feel angry, abandoned, rejected, insecure, vulnerable, guilty, ashamed, embarrassed, anxious, and/or helpless? What triggered those emotions?
- Do things you enjoyed as a child: As a child, you probably did many things just for fun. You didn’t have to, you just wanted to. So try to do that as an adult now to connect with your inner child. Watch movies or shows you enjoyed from your childhood, reread some of your favourite books, play some of your favourite games growing up, or eat foods you used to enjoy
How Meditation Can Help Inner Child Healing?
Meditation has plenty of benefits for physical and mental health, but a few of these relate directly to inner child work.
- Meditation boosts mindful self-awareness, teaching you to pay more attention to feelings that come up in daily life.
- Deep guided meditations can help you connect with your deeper consciousness- your inner child. It helps get clarity on what needs to shift in order for you to move forward.
- Helps soften the resistance and “stuckness” you are feeling in your adult life.
- It teaches you to sit with difficult emotions.
- Helps to be present with yourself and how to develop emotional regulation skills and manage your stress levels.
Here is a simple journaling exercise to get you started: Describe The Inner Child
Become curious about your child part by asking yourself the following questions:
- How old is he or she?
- What does he or she look like?
- What expression is there on his or her face?
- How is he/she feeling? stressed? Anxious? Angry? lonely?
- Then, you want to ask the inner child: how can I validate and reassure you?
Describing your inner child helps you feel empathy and compassion toward the child, while validating his or her experience, as you “see” the child as innocent.
Try not to ask the inner child “What happened to you at this age?”, instead ask him or her “What kind of things has this child experienced?” as to not trigger implicit reliving.
It’s time you give a regular meditation practice a try!
Ready to take a step to connect with or deepen your relationship with your inner child?
Our weekly Meditation healing Circle Classes are a safe place for you; especially if you are a beginner to get comfortable connecting with your inner child. It’s my pleasure to offer you a first free class pass; don’t be shy; email me today!