(Click here for the first article on being honest with your inner child.)
(Click here for the second article on how to recognise a wounded inner child.)
In this article, we explore some ways to heal the inner child. As I’ve mentioned in previous articles (see above), living in a beautiful but broken world pretty much guarantees that everyone has some degree of inner-child wounding. If your inner child is wounded, you are normal and you have nothing to fear. Healing is possible as far as we allow it to happen. So it’s all good. <3
The main characteristic of a child is dependence. A child depends on parents or primary caregivers in order to survive, to thrive and develop a stable, functional sense of Self with which to face the world. This is why people with wounded inner children tend to swing between extremes of pushing family, friends and loved ones away, or pulling and clinging onto them. Confused and chaotic relationships result, bringing misery to everyone.
Children need parents. It’s as simple as that. Wounded inner children especially need to feel that they are unconditionally loved by another human being. Here’s the good news: healing the inner child with unconditional love is possible. Here’s even better news: you’re by far the best person for the job. To heal your inner child, YOU will need to become your own parent.
Healing is possible as far as we allow it to happen. To heal your inner child, YOU will need to become your own parent.
Here are 6 steps to take towards healing your wounded inner child. Here we go! 🙂
1. Come out and play.
Remember how you were like as a child: your likes, your dislikes, the many adorable quirks that make you, you. What activities did you like to do? Go do ’em. It could be blowing bubbles on a breezy evening, building sandcastles, making up silly songs and singing them aloud (I do that a lot, lol!). If you’re embarrassed, that’s just your ego and/or internalised critic talking. Ignore them. Focus on having fun. This is necessary in order to create a safe environment for our inner child sub-personality to express themselves and develop a trusting relationship with our adult personality, where their needs and emotions are validated.
2. Be ready and willing to re-connect.
While processing childhood memories and engaging in childhood activities, remember that intention is key. This is a Spiritual Law that’s also reflected in the physical world around us. Re-connect with your inner child with the intention to love, accept, and heal. Be mindful that you are approaching a very pure and beautiful part of your Soul, one that you might not have connected with for a long time. Approach your inner-child healing with a sense of dread, shame or hastiness (by that I mean a sense of Let’s get this done and over with) and, more likely than not, you’ll find your inner child running away from you instead. You might need patience before the inner child does decide to come out and play with you – but you’ll know when it happens.
3. Brace + Embrace yourself.
When the inner child trusts you enough to reveal himself or herself to you, you’ll know. It starts with fleeting moments of emotion, or vague childhood flashbacks that seem to come out of nowhere. That’s your inner child beginning to communicate with you. Honour these sacred moments. Don’t over-think; experience, then release them. If those memories, thoughts and emotions are important enough, your inner child will remind you.
As I said earlier, if your inner-child work is beginning to make inroads, you’ll know. That’s when you’ll have to brace yourself – no running away, no denying or suppressing, no rationalising or finger-pointing – because the wounds are going to re-open so you can clean out the gunk and heal them.
Some of those wounds are going to hurt like hell. You might experience the following: shock, anger, sorrow, grief, remorse, regret, disgust, loneliness… just to name a few.
And that is when you’re going to become your own parent.
That’s when you embrace your inner child and let that pure spark in your Soul cry its little lungs out. No judgement, no condemnation and most importantly no rationalisation at this stage: trying to “fix” negative emotions with logic only worsens the injury by invalidating how your inner child felt, undoing the hard work of getting your inner child to trust you.
Enraged with your grandmother for passing on, despite promising you that she would fight her illness? Hated your parents for preferring your brother over you? Horrified that you were molested by a trusted family friend and couldn’t tell anyone? Felt (or feeling) completely misunderstood, alone, and lost?
Release the toxicity that has been brewing in forgotten corners of your Soul for so long. Let it all out. Then do this next step:
The first and most important person you need to forgive is yourself. All of you. Know and understand that despite all your feelings, your mistakes and flaws, both the current you and your inner child, you are still deserving of love.
The extent to which you are willing to forgive those who have hurt you depends on many factors, and ultimately is your decision to make. But remember that the act of forgiveness does NOT excuse, validate or justify what those people did – especially if we’re talking about acts of abuse. Choosing to forgive people who hurt you is more for your own benefit than anyone else’s. It releases you from the shackles of remembering and holding on to the pain of the past. It’s up to you. Take it at your own pace, and remember you are still loved.
5. Live mindfully.
Mindfulness refers to being self-aware, self-loving and self-accepting. It requires a certain focus and discipline in choosing to release negative mindsets, values and/or emotions, and consciously choosing new, more positive ones. For instance, after you have embraced your anger at your parents’ preferential treatment of your siblings and forgiven them, make the conscious choice of re-perceiving your parents with compassion: as people with wounded inner children themselves who didn’t know better. Again, I’m not asking you to make excuses for them – you don’t have to. But taking a mindful approach to yourself and other people can do wonders for your own healing.
Another (often overlooked) part of mindful living involves the aspect of physical care. Proper rest, diet and exercise are in order. Do make positive, practical changes to your lifestyle as part of your inner-child healing! You’ll be so glad you did.
6. Seek assistance.
You don’t have to do all this by yourself. Seek a support network if necessary. Time to rely on trusted family members, friends and loved ones. Speak to a therapist or counsellor and learn new stress management methods or conflict resolution techniques. On a more holistic front, consider a healing consultation with a holistic health professional or Spirit worker. What is important is that you choose the people and the methods that you feel comfortable with. You are not alone!
In closing, I’d like to share a song called ‘Glósóli’ by a band called Sigur Ros. This song and video are heartbreakingly beautiful, and the theme is about childhood and our inner child. Watch to the end (there’s a lot to learn from this video), and get those tissues ready.
And as you’re watching, do ask yourself:
Which inner child am I like in this video?
Which inner child do I want to become?
May your journey towards inner-child healing and wholeness be blessed by Spirit and the Universe. You’re going to be just fine. Love you all. <3
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