Oftentimes when it comes to spiritual growth, there’s an emphasis on living in the now. Know that occasionally revisiting the past can allow harmony into the present moment. With healing being a major part of growth, we must address our inner child. Your inner child is a spiritual existence within, who is deeply connected to your past. Your inner child is the aftermath of your childhood, that which holds recollections, emotions, and primitive coping mechanisms. The inner child may be stuck in past traumas and prevent you from moving forward in a healthy manner. On the flip side, your inner child could also be this really colorful and carefree person. In order to achieve maximum contentment, we must seek our inner child.
Meet Your Inner Child
When I became intrigued about my childhood, I questioned my reactions to triggering situations. I wanted to know how my personality and decision making came to be. I pondered how my childhood may affect my relationship with my partner and friendships. Watching my son grow older, and understanding how much my choices affect him really put a kickstart to my self-discovery and healing process.
Acknowledging Your Inner Child
A good way to approach your inner child is by asking yourself what your fondest memory is. How old were you in this memory and how did you feel about life? Did you feel safe? Who was around? Probing your mind and regenerating these memories can give you plenty of insight about your youth. Another way to create this connection would be through photographs and conversations. See if you can get your hands on old pictures and study them. Study your expressions and body language. Do you remember the clothing you had on in the pictures? Oftentimes, one memory leads to another. I wrote down several questions for my parents about my childhood. Try to speak to the elders of your family to get different perspectives of who you were as a child.
Therapy is a really good way to dig deep into your past. If you have been through something traumatic, a professional can help you sift through the events that bring distress. They know what questions to ask to get to the root of your grief. Understand that connecting to your inner child does not always begin with depression or agony. Sometimes there’s just curiosity and a need for clarity on oneself.
Healing the Inner Child
Meditation and reflection are vital to my inner child work.
Being still enough to remember and grasp onto past feelings takes a practiced tranquility. Carve time out to focus on remembering. Retrospection may bring uncomfortable or joyful feelings to the surface. Each time you are reminded of your history, it brings you closer to your truth.
Allow yourself to be playful and do things you enjoyed as a kid.
When I was younger, I loved arts and crafts. Incorporating crafting into my life as an adult keeps me young and vibrant. There’s positivity in connecting to your inner child and you must acknowledge that part too! Maybe over time, life has disconnected you from some of the things you once loved most about yourself. Understand that it is okay to have playful moments and nurture that part of your existence.
Parenting yourself in the moments you feel small and vulnerable is imperative.
Give yourself the encouragement, love, and positive affirmations you needed when you were a child. Self-nurturing is some of the most beautiful growth work we can give to ourselves, Pretty Birds. In times of crisis or confusion, coddle your spirit. As you grow, you will learn how to care for yourself and show others how to care for you. Take control over your life by honoring your past.
Image credit: Jill Lavetsky