On the Path to Personal Power?
Healing the Wounded Inner Child
"One of my favorite truisms is that it's never too late to have a happy childhood." Phil Reckard
The Inner child is a real and delicate entity...it holds very deep and superficial wounds. The feelings can be quite incapacitating to the mature adult who carries them.
As adults, we can look at our bodies and see a grown up, capable individual, who should be able to function and cope well in the greater environment of our life. But, there is so frequently fear, sadness, shame, guilt and many other raw emotions, which shut us down, make us hide from our loved ones, our friends, our challenges. We often feel that things are overwhelming, that we are not loved, not good enough for whatever it is this life requires, including the demands of relationship.
The part of us that feels this doubt and fear, the part of us which is stymied by some of the simplest things, the part of us that wants to run away and hide, is the small, dependent, uncertain Inner Child. This delicate being wants to be heard, wants to be loved, wants to be included.
The most important thing to understand is that this child is actually just a memory within the personality of the adult.
This child is an accumulation of mis-understandings, of painful experiences, of sadnesses experienced when one was a child.
The healing of this child's unhappiness is accomplished through the understanding and recognition that one is no longer this child.
The adult can see logically at first, and then actually feel, that they are a different person then they were in their childhood.
The adult can, with assistance, uncover the pain and the sadness of the past, see it as just a memory, and bring harmony and love to those feelings.
Harmony is restored, healing is accomplished, a centered, well balanced adult emerges to continue living.
This does not erase the fact that unhappy and uncomfortable experiences happened, it simply gives the adult a way to bring the Inner Child into a harmonious and mutually creative life experience.
I would say that 99% of all counseling and reading that I do accesses the needs of the inner child. Hears what the inner child is holding on to. Through the combination of reading what the issues are, and offering the awareness techniques that I teach and use in counseling, almost every individual finds peace. It would be easy for me to do "Inner Child Readings"....this is really what I do already. Love, Anatara
Releasing one's inner child is an ongoing process. It starts with a simple connection:
relax, take a few big deep breaths, close your eyes, and imagine yourself as a child... allow whatever images come up ... trust that your imagination knows what it's doing... observe the images, notice what you're wearing, who is around you, listen for sounds, and then open a conversation... ask the child how it's feeling, what it is doing, where it is going... whatever comes to mind. Then listen for answers, and watch any changes in the images
The second step in the process is about forgiveness:
as you focus on your inner child, think of forgiving yourself, your parents and siblings, teachers, anyone who might have hurt you.. Your inner child may feel ashamed, blaming, or may even feel s/he/you still need to be punished for old mistakes. This personality is still a child afterall, with feelings that have not had a chance to evolve and mature. And s/he has probably set some obstacles in your path, made it difficult for you to attract fulfilling relationships or prosperity, so no tonly do you need to help this little being within to forgive him or herself for whatever they thought they did wrong, but you also need to forgive your inner child for getting in your way. And s/he needs to be able to forgive you for not listening before now...
The third step in the process sheds love and light on your inner child, and on you:
the first two steps open the doors to communication and understanding, but the third step is what activates the healing and release of your inner child. Before you leave the meditation with your inner child, surround this child in a bubble of pink and green light, the colours of Divine Love, kiss and hug the child within and let this personality know how much you love them, how happy you are for their presence in your life. Congratulate this child for having been so strong and determined to be heard. Tell the little you how beautiful or handsome you are, how smart you are, how brave... Express your gratitude for the joy and enthusiasm this little being brings into your life - and especially for being willing to show themselves to you, to talk with you. Promise the little you that you will listen better in the future and invite this child within to appear again, to tell you what s/he is happy or sad about.
The final step in the healing and releasing process is to repeat the first three steps over and over again. Says Spiritual Teacher, codependence counselor, grief therapist, author, Robert Burney on the Joy to You & Me Enterprises site:
"Inner child work is in one way detective work. We have a mystery to solve. Why have I have I been attracted to the the type of people that I have been in relationship with in my life? Why do I react in certain ways in certain situations? Where did my behavior patterns come from? Why do I sometimes feel so: helpless; lonely; desperate; scared; angry; suicidal; etc."
Just starting to ask these types of questions, is the first step in the healing process. It is healthy to start wondering about the cause and effect dynamics in our life.
That is the purpose of inner child healing - to stop letting our experiences of the past dictate how we respond to life today. It cannot be done without revisiting our childhood. We need to become aware, to raise our consciousness. To create a new level of consciousness for ourselves that allows us to observe ourselves.
We all have an inner critic, a critical parent voice, that beats us up with shame, judgment, and fear. The critical parent voice developed to try to control our emotions and our behaviors because we got the message there was something wrong with us and that our survival would be threatened if we did, said, or felt the "wrong" things."
Anytime we have a strong emotional reaction to something or someone - when a button is pushed and there is a lot of energy attached, a lot of intensity - that means there is old stuff involved.
It is the inner child who feels panic or terror or rage or hopelessness, not the adult.
We need to ask ourselves "How old am I feeling right now?" and then listen for an intuitive answer. When we get that answer then we can track down why the child was feeling that way.
It is not that important to know the details of why the child is feeling that way - it is important to honor that the child's feelings are valid. Sometimes we recover some memory and sometimes we don't - the details are not that important, honoring the feelings is important. Trying to fill in the details isn't necessary and can lead to false memories. "
As we unravel the mystery of who we really are and get comfortable with our inner child, we become more aware of our feelings - and our triggers. But it takes a consistent and ongoing effort to "peel the layers off the onion" to fully release that enthused, innocent, loving child within, that core self that is pure joy and unconditional love. So, get out your magnifyling glass, put your inner detective to work on the mystery that is you. Start by seeking and releasing the child within. You could be surprised at how enlightening and freeing is this work!
More on Working with Your Inner Child:
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