By Lexi Marie of @primally_cosmic_yoga
“Can you remember who you were,
before the world told you who you should be”
~ Charles Bukowski, German-American poet
The Nature of the Child
Magic, wonder, awe, curiosity… the most cherished aspects of childhood that linger on forever in our memories. This stage of life is profound. Bliss and joy are the rule, not the exception. As a child we are explorers of this planet. Without any preconceived notions in our head, we are pure and impressionable. Every day is lived in awe of the adventure and nothing is impossible. We have dreams, fears, mood swings, temper tantrums, fits of glee and joy. All of this is unabashedly wild and unapologetic. We express ourselves without shame and with fully glory and passion!
This nature of a child is raw and authentic. One could say that we might never be as authentic as we once were as a child. Childhood is innocence, it is wonder, and it is wisdom. A type of wisdom that is innate. We are all born with this. The way it manifests for each one of us is unique. It is a process in constant unfolding if we make our Inner Child a partner with us on our journey.
Sadly, the value of childhood is often overlooked by society. Western culture typically trends toward the notion of “growing up”—as quickly as possible. From such a young age we are programmed by our world, our community, school, and family to fit into a proverbial box. Labels begin to define us and we lose touch with the inherent knowing we once had, about who we truly are and what we truly desire. Devotion and attention are desired by the child within.
Working with the Little You
Tapping in and co-creating with this aspect of our being, our inner child, is a beautiful & essential part on our journey to becoming whole. The kid within remains eternally present in our everyday experience no matter how much we may age. In fact, more adults than not are simply mere children walking around in adult bodies due to unresolved childhood conflicts and pain. Since this is not a very sustainable way to go about living life, it is critical we each foster our personal relationship with our Inner Child in a balanced way. If our Inner Child goes unmanaged things can go haywire… yet when it is abandoned entirely, we become dull, bitter, and resentful. Finding the balance is key for keeping the innocence within us alive to restore our faith in hard times and inspire our dreams.
"Play is my pathway to joy"
Inner Child Connection
It’s all about making sure the Inner Child is in alignment. Is it being listened to? Often, we do not need to always take the demands of the Inner Child very seriously. Usually, our Inner Child just wants some attention and a little validation that their fears or their hopes are heard and considered by our adult brain. Impressions on childhood last much longer than we think and noticing our triggers is a great way to figure out which experiences from childhood (good or bad) have really stuck with us. This will allow us to move forward as we either make peace with or take inspiration from joyful and painful memories.
Simple practices like doing a visualization where you meet the little you in a garden and closing your eyes, taking a deep breath and saying (either out loud or in your head) “I see you, I hear you, I will take care of you” are a great way to establish a connection with the Inner Child.
If there is a calling for a higher healing due to rejection or abandonment wounds the Hawaiian Forgiveness Prayer, Hoʻoponopono, is one of my favorites with the English translation as, “I’m Sorry. Please Forgive Me. I love you. Thank you.”
`The Inner Child might go into a slumber and you find yourself losing your connection to joy and bliss—states that do not come from an external outcome—but rather spring naturally from within, usually when we are doing something we love for no reason at all other than pure enjoyment. It’s so normal from time to time, especially in this chaotic world to feel bogged down by all the responsibilities and mundane nature of life. In states like these we become rigid, inflexible, and unmoved by the usual pleasures.
To snap out of this funk you can ask your inner child exactly what she needs to feel alive again. Sometimes we won’t get an answer… when that is the case I will look at an old photo of me from childhood, look into my own eyes and ask again. If all else fails turning on an old favorite Spice Girl’s song or whatever you grooved to back in your day is a nice quick fix.
The ways to connect are infinite, what’s most important is that you are engaging from a place of curiosity and awe, just as a child. Only you know what’s truly best for you. Journaling (we love our Deep Soul Notebook Set for Inner Child Work) , dancing, drawing, playing a game, being in nature and with animals are all fun one’s that get me in the headspace of connecting with this part of myself.
The key to all of this is that you completely detach from any outcome. Simply allow the Inner Child to enjoy, from a space of liberation and ease. Allow yourself to bask in this idea because it is very counterintuitive to how we behave as adults. Our lives are so busy and hectic we do not believe we have the time nor the energy to do anything for the sake of pure enjoyment.
Here is your permission to do that thing that lights your fire and sparks the inner child within!