If you have been around the gram for a while now, you might have read the term “Inner Child” somewhere. While as simple as it sounds and you might understand it to be, it has a very deep meaning and in this blog post I am going to give it, it’s fair share of limelight.
The inner child is not just another term coined by the new age self help coaches. The concept has been around in the field of psychology for years now, and was supposedly introduced by Carl Jung and later was used under different names like –
- Divine child archetype
- Wonder child
- The feeling child
- The child within
So who really introduced the common public to the concept of inner child?
To answer the question in short – it was John Bradshaw. You can google him all you want to know more about his work.
So what actually is the Inner Child?
Psychologically speaking, the inner child is You. It is a part of you that is hidden in your unconscious mind and takes all the decisions for you especially when you are facing a challenge.
So if your inner child is happy, loved and feels safe then you are going to make decisions as a happy, loved and secure person. But when your inner child is wounded (read scared, angry, abandoned or sad then the decisions that you make as an adult are going to be limited, rebellious, insecure or painful without you even knowing.
But why will my inner child be sad, angry or scared?
Because of the experiences you had as a child (majorly, early childhood – between the ages 0-8 years). You might not remember the experiences now, but they were strong enough to leave an impact on your mind or should I use the term soul?
Some example of experiences that might have wounded your inner child are –
- Sexual or Physical abuse
- Accidents or incidents that made you feel unsafe
- Separation or abandonment
- No freedom to choose or voice opinions
Why is the inner child an important concept in psychotherapy?
To put it simply, reaching out to your inner child will allow you/your therapist to find the root of all your issues as an adult. Once you start reaching out to your inner child you can –
- Recognise your unmet needs (emotional, mental and physical)
- Release your repressed emotions (majorly the ones you had since your were a little child)
- Resolve unhelpful behaviour/habits
- Let go of past and move on in life
- Unleash your creativity
- Raise your self respect
- Be kind to yourself
- Express yourself freely
- Love yourself first
So what is the next step? How can I know if my inner child is wounded? Read – Signs your inner child is wounded.