What Is The “Inner Child”?

The article is developed in partnership with BetterHelp.

Your inner child is the core of who you are – raw, uncensored, and full of feelings. This whimsical little child that has been tucked away in your psyche may be calling the shots more than you think. Your joys, fears, creativity, and even the way you unconsciously react to situations are all potential side effects of an unrecognized inner child.

So when we’re talking self-discovery and healing, it’s important to get real about reacquainting ourselves with this pint-sized powerhouse. It’s about peeling back those layers of ‘adulting’ and getting to the heart of what makes you tick.

The ‘Inner Child”

The “inner child” concept refers to a deep, often unseen part of our psyche that harbors the feelings, memories, and experiences of our childhood. This aspect of ourselves holds both our capacity for joy and our encounters with sadness – it’s the original lens through which we first viewed the world. Recognizing and nurturing your inner child can lead to profound healing and emotional growth.

Unlocking that childlike wonder isn’t just about feeling all warm and fuzzy inside. It’s about healing.

When we tune in to our mini-me’s voice, we build empathy for ourselves which is essential for balancing stress and leveling up our mental fitness. Think of it as befriending the youngest version of yourself, offering the love and empathy you needed at that time.

The inner child also plays a key role in shadow work, which is about facing those darker, dustier corners of your psyche where your inner child may not have received the love it needed, or may have encountered rejection or loss. Doing the work to accept and understand this part of you may lead to some serious grown-up breakthroughs.

Getting In Touch With Your Inner Child

Healing your inner child isn’t just a stroll down memory lane; it’s about getting real with the kiddo inside you.

Research has illuminated a powerful truth: nurturing this relationship is more than an act of self-love, it’s a protective measure for our mental well-being. Studies have shown that revisiting events from our childhood may help to improve our ability to adapt throughout our lifespan and improve self-confidence.

Studies have also consistently shown a correlation between trauma and the neglect of our inner child and the development of mental health challenges like depression and anxiety later in life.

Acknowledging and validating the feelings of your younger self can be a transformative process, leading to a path of healing and growth. We can build resilience and forge a brighter, more hopeful future by cultivating a supportive internal dialogue.

Activities For Reconnecting With Yourself

Journaling is a compassionate and reflective practice that allows one to connect with their inner child. Putting pen to paper creates a safe space for the younger self to express hidden fears, hopeful dreams, and unprocessed emotions.

This act of self-acknowledgment is immensely healing and may help to validate the feelings from our past and pave the way for self-understanding and growth.

Similarly, engaging in playtime and creativity acts as a nurturing balm for the inner child. It unlocks the door to joy and spontaneity that adulthood often relegates to the background.

Whether it’s through art, music, or movement, infusing our lives with creative activities can restore a sense of wonder and curiosity. It’s not only therapeutic but also reinforces the path to healing by rekindling the flames of imagination and play.

Reparenting Therapy

Reparenting therapy is an approach that allows individuals to address unmet needs and unresolved conflicts from their childhood. This method encourages nurturing the parts of ourselves that might have been neglected or hurt in the past.

By doing inner child work within this framework, we tap into that primal element of our being, learn to comfort it, and heal it. We embark on this healing journey armed with the tools of mindfulness – a practice that grounds us in the present moment and teaches us to respond to our inner child’s needs with compassion rather than reliving past hurts.

You can find more information regarding reparenting therapy here: http://www.betterhelp.com/advice/therapy/how-to-heal-past-traumas-with-reparenting-therapy/

Final Thoughts

If you’re feeling disconnected from your sense of self or struggling with unresolved emotions and unhealthy habits, know that it is both brave and reparative to embark on the journey of inner child work.

Reconnecting with that free-spirited inner child isn’t just a whimsical notion—it’s a serious game-changer for your well-being. Unleashing your inner kid can catapult you to a life bursting with creativity, resilience, and an infectious zest that can turn even the mundane into something extraordinary.

So go ahead, indulge in a little playtime, and watch a more liberated, joy-soaked version of you emerge. Trust me, the adult you will high-five the kid in you for it. It’s like finding life’s cheat code for happiness—use it and level up!



Life Advice

Photo of author


Emma covers dating and relationships for Unfinished Man, bringing a witty woman's perspective to her writing. She empowers independent women to pursue fulfillment in life and love. Emma draws on her adventures in modern romance and passion for self-improvement to deliver relatable advice.

Leave a Comment