All of us have an inner child within. And this inner child could be a manifestation of yourself in the initial stages of your life. Or a patchwork of the developing stages that you have been through or may be a symbolic representation of your dreams and fantasies. According to experts, an awareness of the carefree and childhood days of your lives could be an excellent way of dealing with the taxing times.
It's worth mentioning here that everyone doesn't associate childhood with fun and frolic. Some people undergo a lot of emotional pain, trauma, neglect, and undeserved experiences in childhood, and in such cases, your inner child would be vulnerable and looking for protection. And unknowingly, you may have put it to sleep in order to protect yourself.
But hiding your pain would do nothing for inner child healing. Rather it resurfaced in adult years and showcase itself as difficulties and distress in the personal and professional sphere. Nurturing your inner child would take time and effort and you should be eager to reparent it. Here goes a few effective tips that can help you deal with the situation with efficiency.
Acknowledge the presence of the inner child
The gravest mistake that we commit as adults is to deny that we have a child hiding within us. According to psychotherapists, anyone can come in touch with their inner child but it's important to accept its presence in the first place.
In case you are feeling resistant to explore your past, it is going to be all the more difficult for you to start with the process of healing. It may feel awkward to open up to a child rooted within you but it's crucial for the pursuit of self-discovery. You may have to recognize as well as accept stuff that has caused pain and trauma in your childhood but when you bring them to the forefront, you will start realizing their impact.
Formulate affirming dialogue
For your inner child healing and nurturing, you should start with simple phrases that affirm its presence. After some time, you will see yourself to be prepared to have a genuine and deeper relationship with your inner child. Take your time and sit with an intention of connecting with it, either through meditation, journaling, or therapy.
Your aim should be to let your inner child feel safe around you and that you validate its opinions. Communicate with your inner child and make it realize that whatever you do from now on is in its best interest. It is very important for your inner child to know that it can give vent to the repetitive cycle or the happenings of the past and it may only be possible when your safety is established.
You can use it as a model for creating a continual dialogue with the inner child on your way forward. But you should always take the time to talk with it and listen to what it wants and needs from you.
Write a letter to your inner child
When you attempt nurturing your inner child, it's crucial to let it know that you are done repeating the patterns of the past. To do this, draft a letter to your inner child and pour in the expressions that you wished to hear as a child. It could be anything from love and care to scope for expressing yourself freely or even the chance to play around. Playing is a vital space for growth and healing.
As you have finished writing the letter you shall read it out loud to yourself or take it with you for therapy sessions. You may also choose to read it out during meditation. After all, you know yourself the best. Develop a process that feels right for you.
Recreate pictures of your childhood or look at old snaps
When you have access to the old pictures of your childhood, sit with the album and pull yourself to draft the emotional scripts the way you wanted. If you have experienced neglect and harassment in your growing years, you may want to look at those pictures while you cuddle yourself and say affirmative words of love and protection to yourself.
Again it may so happen that you are not able to look back at those photos as they function as a reminder of your dark past. In such instances, you can recreate moments of your childhood the way you wanted it through collage or art. You should intend to make yourself feel that your position, thoughts, and expressions are valid and you are given a space to explore them.
Meditation is a way of nurturing your inner child
Haven't you seen yourself in a position where you ask a lot of questions to your inner child? Or may be it is asking you questions the answers of which are not known to you. Meditation can be a great way of opening up to yourself for all those answers. The benefits of meditation for your mental and physical health need no introduction, but it has a lot to do in your inner child healing.
For instance, meditation enhances self-esteem and awareness of the self and with regular practice, you can pay more attention to feelings and thoughts that come into your mind regularly. When you can practice greater mindfulness about your inner self which, in turn, can help you keep a note of situations that can trigger unwanted reactions.
The bottom line
Emotions, be they positive or negative, are supposed to be felt and expressed. When you repress your emotions for an extended period of time, they may desperately come out, often in harmful ways. If you are experiencing discomfort in nurturing your inner child and cannot cope up with the traumatic memories and grief, it's time to talk to an expert.
Seeking guidance from a trained psychotherapist can support your situation and show you new ways to face harrowing experiences. After all, learning to reparent your inner child is the first step towards resolving the concerning issues.