Hypnotherapy and the inner child

Within ourselves still lives the child we once were, our inner child. Many mental disorders and behaviour patterns can be linked to this mostly subconscious part of ourselves. Deciding to explore this part of ourselves and to contact the child we once were, takes us on a journey to the core of ourselves. We can then befriend, embrace, champion and heal that child. Many adults are unaware that, deep within themselves, such a fragile, often wounded part of who they were has deeply influenced their decisions and their path forward. It has indeed led them where they are here and now. We are, as human beings, a sum of all our experiences. We can “visit” our inner child and tell him/her that whatever happened in the past, he/she is worthy of love.

It is important to understand that this part of ourselves not only represents our capacity for innocence, wonder, joy, sensitivity and playfulness but also often holds childhood hurts, traumas, fears and anger. No one knows your inner child better than you and this is why you are his ideal parent, brother, sister or best friend. You know exactly how to talk to him/her. This journey to the core of ourselves often feels like the right place to be, the right channel, the right “radio station” for contacting our deepest hurts and wounds. It is a very powerful path towards self-realization and each step onto this path should be undertaken under therapeutic, professional supervision (e.g. a qualified hypnotherapist) – as strong emotions are reawakened.  

Befriending your inner child often feels like being able to get up again, breathe, discover and fight for what your heart really wants, meet and honour your integrity, your joy, your smile. Becoming aware that we actually can reconcile our life as adults with the life we experienced as a child is per se very comforting. Many “visits” can be organised and each one of them will have a purpose. It is a wonderful way to “reprogram” the relationship we have with ourselves, reassure the wounded, frightened little child within, reclaim our identity and remember who we truly are. It is also a way to become aware of and correct erroneous beliefs.

According to modern psychology, true adulthood hinges on acknowledging, accepting and taking responsibility for our own inner child. Instead of denying, neglecting, abandoning or rejecting this part of ourselves, we embrace it, listen to it, nurture it and treat it with love. Establishing trust is also paramount. As Freud first intimated, a great deal of suffering is related to this mostly unconscious part of ourselves. And so…, show empathy and understanding towards your inner child. Tell him/her that regardless of what happened in the past, he/she did the best he/she could at the time. Remember you are talking to a child. Offer protection, say you came with the best intentions in the world. 

Our wounded child will respond to genuineness and integrity. Much beyond our inner child, we may also touch on the suffering of several generations. Our mother or our father may have suffered throughout their lives. Were they able to look after the wounded child in themselves? It is important and liberating to be aware that when we embrace the little child within us, we are also healing wounded children of past generations, sometimes correcting ancestral patterns of suffering. If we can heal our wounded child, we will no doubt liberate ourselves but also help to liberate whoever has hurt or abused us.

Hypnotherapy is, in my experience, a very effective way of accessing the subconscious and visiting the inner child. Time and time again, I have found that hypnotherapy enables us to connect with the inner child in a way that promotes great relaxation and insights. The purpose of the visit can be discussed beforehand and specific goals can be established. Through the gentle process of trance – very similar to daydreaming – the client is then able to bridge his/her conscious mind with the subconscious. This process enables him/her to have a dialogue with the child within, the child he/she once was and still lives on.

The powerful impact hypnotherapy and inner child work has on people’s lives never ceases to amaze me. Inner child work reconnects us with this part of ourselves longing to be heard and held. It is deeply rewarding, enabling us, in a nurturing and loving way, to come back home and to heal our fragmented self. 

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Written by a listed hypnotherapist

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