What is Inner Child Work?
Do you feel that you had events in your childhood which are still impacting your life today in a negative way? Have you found it difficult or even near impossible to move past them and process them completely? If so, giving yourself the gift of inner child work may be something worth diving into. Not only does it provide the chance to connect with the child within, but also an opportunity to heal and release pain which has had you tethered to the past.
First things first, “Healing the inner child” work does not involve using hypnosis specifically to recover hidden or repressed memories. What it does do, is allow us to discover, heal and let go of things about ourselves which are rooted in our childhood, and are now creating issues in our daily life and and/or relationships.
Sometimes childhood traumas or bereavements are ignored by adults, never giving a child the opportunity to process the situation. This can cause a child to manage from a place of self-preservation instead of developing healthy patterns which promote trust of others.
In order to thrive and reach our fullest potential as adults, we all have basic needs that must be met consistently, especially when we were most vulnerable as children. The most basic needs are for food, safety and shelter. Other important needs are for loving attention, a sense of belonging, stimulation through learning and play, emotional support, positive role models, structure and boundaries, age appropriate responsibilities, respect, freedom to express oneself, to be heard, and creative outlets.
As children if we do not have these needs met, or they are met erratically or inconsistently, we develop defenses and strategies to compensate which often we refer to as “coping skills” as adults. These strategies may help us cope and survive when we are young, but as we get older, these defenses, behaviors, perceptions and ways of being with ourselves and our world often become liabilities.
Many common issues that people want to work on in hypnotherapy are linked to these childhood patterns that limit their experiences in their present life. Sometimes the best way to deal with these issues is to deal with the cause then work to release the symptom.
Some examples of common defenses are: Unexplained anger outbursts or feelings of aggression • Wanting to control the behavior of the ones closest to them · Self-Sabotaging • Feeling like people do not like them • Fear of abandonment and rejection • Fear of authority figures or hostile toward authority • Problems with intimacy • Feeling unworthy, not good enough • Inability to moderate food needs appropriately Uncontrollable anxiety or phobias · Not comfortable with challenges • Intimidated by sex or love partners past and current • Always has a need to be perfect · Compulsiveness • Afraid to express needs • Uncomfortable with love and affection • “Acting out” sexually or lack of sexual involvement • Afraid for others to see the true self • Hidden shame of self • Guilt over not living up to expectations from self and others • Not able to be authentic with true feelings · Excessive people pleasing · Continuing to attract the wrong type of partners · Repeatedly falling into negative patterns in partnerships
The Inner Child work is a powerful therapeutic experience. Using hypnosis, we can help our inner child untangle and move past limiting beliefs which are causing issues now. We create a safe place which allows you to support and re-parent them in a way which releases old baggage and allows freedom to move into new positive patterns of being.
Healing begins with getting to the source of any pain whether it is physical, mental or emotional. Growing up we all experience a range of positive and negative family dynamics we subconsciously absorb like sponges. Some won’t have a lasting impact… and some will. We may integrate our scolding parent’s voice in our Inner Adult. And most of the time, this inner voice continues to scold us, sometimes nonstop. If we listen to our inner dialogue, we can hear ourselves tell us what we’re doing wrong or how it is not good enough.
In the end, it is important to realize that our parents or caregivers were all doing the best they could at their own level of consciousness. We are not responsible for any of their actions, failings or neglect.
By being honest with ourselves about our past and present, taking responsibly for our actions, and moving towards resolving them in our subconscious by using this positive therapeutic experience, we can heal deep wounds and make huge strides in becoming our bests selves.
"It's been incredibly transformational, and I've been in talk therapy for years. It was a much more comfortable situation and I wasn't so guarded and could listen to my inner voice. I've found that each session of Inner Child Work is equivalent to about 6 months of talk therapy!" -J.B Seal Beach
*The Inner Child Series takes place over 8 sessions. Please ask for details.