Record the tones of voice, expressions, and words your parents or teaches used when interacting with you. Even if a memory seems silly or a reaction you remember having seemed excessive, please write it down. As an adult, it’s important to honor what your inner child authentically experienced, even if it seems ridiculous or exaggerated as an adult.
The more information and emotionally-charged material you have for a particular age range, the more you need to focus on connecting with that particular stage. I’ll share with you how below.
2. Write a letter TO your inner child
Imagine that you’re a wise, gentle, and loving wizard or fairy godmother. Imagine that you want to adopt your inner child. As you write the letter, tell your inner child how much you love them and want to spend time with them. Write in a way that makes you feel safe, cared for, and understood. Here’s an example from a letter I have written to my inner child:
Dear Little Ale,
I’m so happy you’re born. I am here to protect, love, and care for you. I want to help you feel loved and accepted for who you are. I want to show you that it’s safe to be heard, to feel, and to be seen. I want you to feel like you will always have a home with me no matter what. I want to help and guide you every step of the way. I love you so much.
Love, Fairy Godmother Aletheia
If you feel emotional during this process, it’s okay. Let yourself cry and be proud of your courage to express how you truly feel.
3. Write a letter FROM your inner child
Using your non-dominant hand (in order to bypass your logical side of the brain), write yourself a letter from the perspective of your inner child. For example, if you are usually right-handed, use your left hand to write. Using your non-dominant hand will help you get more in touch with the feelings of your inner child. Here is my own example of my inner child speaking to me:
I want to find home. Please protect me. I don’t want to feel alone anymore.
Love, Little Ale
You can write back and forth between your Wizard/Fairy Godmother self and your little self. Creating this conversation often reveals a lot of surprising and buried emotions, and new information.
4. Share your pain with a trusted person
It is important that the pain you went through as a child is validated and heard by someone. Whether you seek out a caring friend, support group, or trusted therapist please understand that sharing your feelings is essential to all inner child work. Sure, you can do it alone. And you can do a lot of deep work alone in general.
But in order to experience a ‘breakthrough’ or even just to heal deeply from wounded inner child, sharing is important. We are social creatures who need others to hold space for us. Your pain needs to be lovingly validated. If the person you’re sharing your inner child work with is questioning, arguing, or trying to give advice to you, you’re not getting what you need!
Here, it is vital for me to emphasize the need to seek real caring and nurturing support. If you don’t have friends who are mature or capable enough of doing this, please consider finding a therapist or spiritual counselor. There are many affordable options out there. Investing in your well-being and mental health IS worth it. There are also many professionals out there who specialize in inner child work or hold workshops.