What is the child’s inner work?
The concept of the inner child was spread by the Swiss psychologist Carl Jung, who considered the inner child of a person as the innocent, sensitive and miraculous part of one. The inner child’s work focuses on healing childhood wounds in adulthood, reconnecting with lost, stolen, or forgotten parts of your younger self to locate wounds. “The inner child is very often deeply injured. “It leaves the person feeling unworthy, lovable, invisible and insecure from childhood to adulthood,” explains Carla Marie Manly, PhD, a Jungian-trained psychotherapist.
Birth up to seven is the period of imprinting where we take on other people’s beliefs. At this stage of development, our brain is a sponge as we can not analyze information. The inner child is devastated by emotional traumas that have occurred during these formative years where we are completely dependent on our parents or carers. If we are not nurtured, we develop maladaptive coping skills and defense mechanisms to survive and meet our own needs, because caregivers could not.
Child trauma affects adult behavior. Those who have an inner child who suffers are often immature and disordered, which means they have difficulty managing their emotions, according to Dr. Manly. “The injured inner child can manifest in an adult with outbursts of anger or other dysfunctional behaviors,” he says. , patterns of irresponsibility or chronic fear of rejection “. The advantage of doing homework for the child is to break old patterns that do not serve us.
What to expect from the child’s internal work
Rachael Chatham, a psychotherapist, finds that a child’s inner workings are the most powerful way to heal childhood wounds. Chatman emphasizes that it is important to seek the support of an authorized mental health professional, especially if there has been significant child abuse or neglect.
Internal child labor usually begins with speech therapy. “Usually we start with discussions about what the person was like as a child, what were his innate qualities, his temperament, his likes and dislikes. “We also discuss their most formative experiences as a toddler,” says Chatham. “Typically, these early experiences with others lead to basic beliefs about themselves, relationships and the world at large.”
Internal child work strategies
Therapists have a number of in-house child labor strategies in their toolbox, including picture work, which Chatham explains is when the client is encouraged to ‘draw on their creativity and imagination to envision themselves as a small child. ». Another popular strategy involves writing assignments where clients write a letter to themselves as a toddler.
“There is also a dialogue technique in which the client converses with the child’s self,” says Chatham. A therapist can guide a patient to a specific moment or memory where he or she has denied his or her playful, living self.
By working inside the child, a professional may ask the patient to bring childhood photographs. “Photographs of themselves as children can also be useful to run their memory and get acquainted with this newer version of them,” says Chatham.
Dr. Manly uses depth-oriented psychotherapy to delve into the realm of the wounded inner child by finding the sources of mental trauma to create understanding and healing. “Psychological well-being improves as the individual becomes more aware and connected to the inner child,” he says. “When psychotherapy is undertaken to heal and honor the inner child, physical healing and balancing occurs.”
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