Category Archives: Inner Child Healing

Loving the Inner Child

I have been aware of the need to love the inner child for many years , through my own reading and research on how to overcome my childhood issues. It is only in the last few months that I have really noticed a difference in the way I have related to this part of myself in a more loving, nurturing way.

About a month ago, I purchased some new piano music to try after streaming the album online. I picked a few pieces and found them to be extremely difficult. I usually pride myself on spending lots of time working through difficult pieces to improve my playing, but these were so difficult as to not really provide much pleasure in even small improvements. At first I found myself exceptionally angry and frustrated.

“I should be able to play it!”

“Why can’t I play it?!”

“I must be a lot worse at piano than I thought!”

“I’m so rubbish. I’ll never be good enough.” (Notice how this then became a generalisation to my whole self!)

By this point I was really grumpy and about to let the frustration spoil my evening, so I decided to take myself off into our bedroom to meditate, to see if I could work through this.

Well, very quickly after relaxing into meditation I became aware of the barking voice of my old deputy headmistress from my primary school-

“You stupid child, why can’t you do it? Everybody else can do it, why can’t you? Are you an idiot?”

These words were never directed at me, but there were a certain few classmates who bore the brunt of the abuse over the years. She was an absolute dragon! I’d honestly forgotten about her, but during this meditation I realised my inner child hadn’t! She was still absolutely terrified of her, and had taken on the belief that she must be absolutely flawless to avoid this type of verbal attack. She was devastated for her classmates, but also just terrified by the insane rage of this woman. My inner child thought that this was normal and what was deserved. She didn’t know that this kind of verbal attack was abusive, and cruel, and that the only one in the wrong was the headmistress.

I honestly felt true compassion for my inner child in that moment. I wanted to protect her and shout back at the headmistress. I knew I was capable of being just as fierce! I wanted to pick up little Rachel, and comfort her. So in my mind I did. I told her that she was in no way deserving of this kind of bullying, that she was loved and protected, she had done absolutely nothing wrong, and the headmistress was a cruel human being who would probably lose her job now. The primary school was a very strict Catholic school and was big on the shaming approach. You will go to hell if you’re disobedient- that kind of thing. That seriously screws you up when you’re so young, sensitive, and vulnerable. There were also incidents of teachers smacking misbehaving kids over their knee in front of the whole class. I remember this clearly. We were only 4 or 5.

This might sound trivial to some people, but being such a highly sensitive individual, and so desperate to please everybody, I was extremely affected. No wonder I always want to be so bloody perfect at art and music, and life in general. The headmistress’s bullying voice became my own bullying voice, in a bid to protect myself from public shaming. If I could bully myself into the desired behaviour/performance/achievement, then I would get there before the she would- hence avoiding a verbal assault in front of my peers.

Anyway, after soothing my inner child whilst in meditation, I did start to feel much more loved, calmer, and I cared much less about the difficult piano pieces. Insanely difficult. I was expecting too much, and reminded myself of the other hard pieces I had learned, and how much I loved playing them. Loving playing is the most important part.

I was proud of myself for noticing my anger that evening, and for having the presence of mind to stop myself, and say “hey, let’s sort this out before it ruins the whole evening. What is going on here that is making me feel so angry? How am I treating myself?”

I am grateful that some higher guidance hooked me up with a very good reason why I was feeling so much fear, and that I was able to soothe my inner child. To begin to feel this kind of protectiveness for her, this love and compassion, is quite a breakthrough for me, so I am very thankful! I’m sure there will be much more work with her to come!

Emerging Shadow Aspects of the Soul

Working with shadow parts is always something that makes me feel apprehensive, even though I know it shouldn’t as it is just the lower vibrational aspects of our soul arising to be released.

It is scary when I find out things about myself that I really don’t like. Knowing that they need love and healing helps a little. Also observing them rather than attaching to them helps to quell any judgement of myself that naturally stirs.

Just because we know how we don’t want to feel or be, doesn’t necessarily mean we don’t feel those things or have those aspects in our personalities.

Recently I’ve been noticing cowardly parts of myself. Actually that’s quite a judgemental word, I think I prefer fearful. I’ve noticed that I am far too happy to stay indoors and away from people in light of the current coronavirus outbreak. Things have just ramped up a notch here in the UK, and we’re now told to only go out for essential purposes.

At the moment this hasn’t bothered me one bit. I love being at home, it’s peaceful to me, and in my current recovery from Coeliacs Disease I still have little energy (an earlier boost a few weeks ago has unfortunately subsided). I am an introvert at heart, but one who needs and loves being around people in small doses.

The new imposed limits in contact have awoken in me a realisation that I am greatly relieved to have an excuse not to socialise. Like seriously relieved! This really surprised me. I’ve always been aware that I’m very socially anxious, but I didn’t realise by how much, or how much it has been affecting me.

What scares me so much about socialising with other people?

I find it all too intense. Other people’s energy seems very “loud” if that makes any sense to you? I feel very overwhelmed by it very quickly. At some point I even questioned if I have Aspergers. I certainly fit some of the criteria, but not enough for a diagnosis I don’t think.

The overwhelm doesn’t just come from the other people, but also the environment we are in: noise, visuals, other energies around us.

But even in a peaceful environment, one-on-one with a friend, I can only manage a small amount of time before I feel overstimulated.

I am constantly aware of how the other person sees me, perceives, judges. I am constantly monitoring myself and them for signs of doing something socially inappropriate or upsetting to someone.

No wonder I get so overstimulated, and fearful also. I put myself under a microscope and am super-conscious of everything I do.

Exploring my fear has helped me judge myself less. I almost feel I am observing a frightened child, one who hasn’t managed to learn how to accommodate her sensitivities, and judges herself harshly for not fitting in, and not wanting to socialise. It feels easier to be kinder and compassionate towards her.

I find online friendships helpful. They create a little bit of distance and I like that I can reply in writing, which I can take more time over, and am not in a situation I find pressurising.

This social anxiety has greatly impacted my ability to hold down a regular job, coupled with bipolar. I think when the anxiety is all the time, everyday at a job, and I am constantly exhausted from it, that is when the mood swings kick in and bipolar cycles begin and escalate.

I wonder if part of me, maybe part of my ancestral karma, is extremely judgemental of mental illness. It shocks me to think so, but I feel emotional at this realisation, which makes me think there is some truth in it.

It’s slightly horrifying seeing as mental health conditions are so rife in my family.

Perhaps we have ancestors or past lives that involve severe judgement or abuse of the mentally ill. Of course I seriously hope not, but there is definitely part of me that judges myself harshly for not being “normal” (I don’t see others’ mental health issues in this way at all) and sometimes I think I do bully myself. I feel ashamed that I’ve always found adulthood extremely difficult- dealing with a job, plus housework, cooking, washing etc. In fact the last three alone I find challenging enough.

I feel ashamed when people ask me “so what do you do Rachel?”. I never know what to say really. I don’t have a job. At the moment I don’t use my time very wisely either- too much TV and internet, not enough writing, art, piano and flute. I think I do try and bully myself into doing them, which inevitably makes me not want to do them. I’m extremely judgemental of myself when I do participate and am a perfectionist. Not much fun!

Then on top of all that I feel like I’m putting myself into a position of powerlessness by attaching to beliefs about being a victim.

I just can’t win! 😂

So, it would appear I need to do a whole lot of release of judgement, and a whole lot of forgiveness. I know these things take time, and it happens in baby steps. I’ve identified the problem, so now I can do something about it by being much more compassionate with myself, much kinder and gentler. One step at a time.

It’s funny. I asked my husband once what he most loved about me and he said that I am kind and caring. Not to myself it would seem, but hopefully I will be able to turn those qualities inwards.

N.B It has occurred to me that just by acknowledging and accepting our shadow qualities, we are being courageous.

Conversations With Myself: Exploring Low Mood

ID-10013428If you’re light sensitive like me, then you may find a grey day can really lower your mood

I’ve only been up two hours on this gloomy day, but I felt my mood dip within 30 minutes of wakening.

My Lumie lamp is a blessing on such a day and really helps to keep my mood up. It’s basically a lamp emitting natural light, and is designed as therapy for those with Seasonal Affective Disorder.

I’m attempting to curb the comfort eating that I automatically resort to every day at the moment.

It’s difficult.

I feel bloated and very out of shape at the moment.
I feel all these negative thoughts building up. So I want to have a conversation with myself to see what’s up. I know I try to avoid looking at any problems I’m having.

Conversing With Myself

How are you feeling today Rachel?

Blue and bored and a bit lonely. I don’t like myself very much for all the comfort eating and lack of exercise. I have little will-power or self-discipline.

What is it about eating sugary foods that helps you?

It distracts me from negative thoughts and feelings.

ID-10075308Why distract yourself from them? They are normal and natural.

They feel bad and uncomfortable. I don’t feel able to deal with them. They feel too much to cope with. I feel like a bad person if I have negative feelings and thoughts.

You are not a bad person for having low vibration thoughts and feelings. It is all part of the human experience of growth and learning. It is safe to look at these feelings and really experience them. They might not be as scary as you think.

I feel really ashamed that I can’t control my eating. I worry so much about what other people think of my body shape. I worry about my physical health. I’m so disappointed in myself.

How can you see this in a loving, compassionate way towards yourself?

I developed my eating patterns as a coping mechanism. The depressions I have experienced could have claimed my life on a few occasions. It was natural that I should find any means possible of surviving those dark times. The fact that these patterns have continued is natural if unhealthy. It is my inner child who needs the soothing. She still calls out for love and attention, but I deny her.

Why do you do this do you think?

I don’t feel worthy of expressing my creative side, that my inner child longs to experience.

Why not?

ID-10054876It is whimsical and childish. I am an adult, who should be giving to the world in an acceptable manner. This is not acceptable!!!

Wow! I can’t believe you feel like that! Maybe you could see what it feels like to allow yourself to create?

It feels unsafe. I feel like I’ll be found out and punished.

Wow!

That’s so strong!!! That’s such a strong belief!! I do feel scared to create! I’m quite shocked that I feel that way- or some part of me deep inside does. I was teased as a child, at school, because of my magical stories I wrote about unicorns and pegasus, which would get read aloud in the classroom. But it got to a point where the teacher asked me to try writing about something else next time. But it is these magical worlds that I love to express.

I feel bad when I draw now, or paint.

Why is that do you think?

It makes a mess. I need to have things cleared up or my parents get annoyed.

But it’s normal for a child to make a mess!

It was safer to keep my parent’s happy. I hated being told off. It felt so scary. It felt like they disapproved creativity and steered me towards sciences. Art wasn’t a suitable career choice.

But it is safe for you to create now! You don’t need to tell yourself off just because your parent’s didn’t allow you to be childlike!

I think this will take some working through. But I will try and do some artwork or write some stories. Starting off a little bit at a time.

Gratitude: Creating Your Own SunshineID-10041509

Is there anything you feel thankful for today?

My Lumie light- it’s bringing some sunshine to my day.
My boyfriend, and the fact I get to spend lots of time with him at Christmas.
My new crystals.
The mind body spirit fair I went to at the weekend- I really enjoyed it.
The fact I can have a whole day to myself and not have to be anywhere or do anything (just for 1 day is nice).
All the books I have to read!
The fact I have the opportunity to improve my body condition. Some people don’t have this privilege.

You Are Amazing!Affirmations for today.

I love and approve of myself just as I am.

It is safe for me to be childlike and creative.

It is safe for me to look at and experience my darker feelings.

I am worthy of improving my health.

I enjoy preparing and eating nutritious food.

I am a beautiful person, even if I don’t feel like it!

I am talented, even if I don’t always believe it.

I am worthy of using and developing my talent.

 

Related Posts

Bipolar and Seasonal Affective Disorder

10 Ideas to Distract Depression: Don’t Feed the Monster!

You Are Amazing!

 

 

Face Fear: Making Peace With Your Shadow

ID-10033305I’ve recently made a big life decision which involves me facing up to some pretty intense fears, by going back to work. Throughout my life, starting at school, I’ve had fears of being trapped and not being able to get away from a situation if I need to. The underlying fear is of being consumed by some intense emotion and reacting in an uncontrollable way. It is a very child-born fear and, as with many anxiety states, is something which is extremely difficult to rationalise myself out of! Placing myself in a working environment, this fear is precipitated by the need to be in a certain situation/role/building for a fixed amount of time, during which I feel I must “hold it together”. By this I mean be able to show only those aspects of myself that are adult, professional and self-controlled.

The Shadow Side In my spiritual development classes, we talk about the shadow side of ourselves. The shadow is made up of those aspects of ourselves which we prefer not to look at- mainly our fears and past behaviours which we have judged ourselves negatively for. This fear of not being able to “escape” is part of my shadow. I unconsciously judge myself for this fear- that it is silly, childish, irrational. These judgements make me feel ashamed of it, of myself. This is part of me I prefer not to look at. This is only one aspect of my own shadow side.

Accepting Our Shadow. Making peace with these shadow aspects of ourselves frees us from the shame we ultimately condemn ourselves to from harsh self- judgements. We’re aiming towards accepting that this fear exists by feeling the fear (physical sensations, emotions, thoughts), acknowledging it from a perspective of non-judgement and compassion, and then gently encouraging ourselves into situations which may trigger the fear- if this is something which needs to be done: I need to be able to make a living and fulfil some kind of useful purpose in my life, therefore I am choosing to face this fear in order to grow and become stronger as a human being. (Of course, being terrified of snakes is probably a fear we can live with- it affects us on a very small scale, unless you happen to work in a reptile house: pretty unlikely, given the fear!)

Compassion for Ourselves Accepting and making peace with this particular aspect of my shadow can look like a conversation between the Shadow Self (which in this case is the frightened, traumatised child) and the Adult self, who is rational, experienced, capable, strong, comforting and soothing:

Shadow Self: “What if I cry or react in some other uncontrollable way at work? I’m terrified I won’t be able to escape or leave when I need to!”

Adult Self (rational, comforting soothing- coming from our higher selves): “Why do you think that might happen?”

Shadow Self: “Because it’s happened before with really bad consequences”. “I don’t feel safe with people in authority, particularly men”.

Adult Self: “This is completely understandable given the experiences you have lived through during childhood and as an adult. You are doing whatever you can to protect yourself. This is a normal reaction to past events. It comes from that part of you which is still a frightened child and that is ok! I, the adult, am here now, and I can take care of you. I am capable and strong and will not leave you in danger. You are safe. It is absolutely ok to feel scared, but know that you are safe now.”

Shadow Side: “But what if it does happen? I will feel so ashamed.”

Adult Side: “What is so shameful about letting out emotion and expressing our truth?”

Shadow Side: “It’s embarrassing and not accepted socially. I’ll be ridiculed and isolated socially”.

Adult Side: “What if I told you that other people’s reactions have nothing to do with you?! They are as important as the speck of dust on your windowsill. The way other people react is their karma and nothing for you to worry about. You are not responsible for any reaction on their part. How they feel about you need not be a significant part of your life. Free yourself from the belief that it is up to you to keep everything and everyone happy and stable. Is isn’t! If you need to express emotion- then that is what is most appropriate for your healing at that moment. It is safe for you to express yourself”.

43397jx6aupqgejBy this point my Shadow Side (or fearful inner child in this case) is feeling soothed, comforted, accepted for who she is, and supported in moving forwards in facing these fears. Once the judgement has been removed from the fear of crying uncontrollably with no escape, space has opened up for me to do it again if I need to- I’ve given myself permission to express myself. I am safe. If I ban myself from doing such a “terrible” thing, I automatically tense up and restrict my true self- I squash myself into a rigid box, compounding the feeling of being trapped. I feel suffocated.

The freedom I have given myself may be completely invisible to other people, but to me it is a precious gift.

Working through these thoughts as I have done above, forms a script, and one that will need to be repeated on numerous occasions until I have trained my mind to be loving and kind to myself! This is a much better platform from which to go out int othe world and face my fear!

More Illustrations

Very happy to share a few more bits of work from my Childrens’ Illustration Project.

Related Post: A Crafty Step Forward- more illustrations here.

Changing the Mind-Programming

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Me and our rescue dog, Cassie.

I’ve been working on some really deep issues in my journal today. It’s been difficult as I’ve been admitting some painful truths.

A few weeks ago I looked at personal power and how I have been “giving it away”.

Self-sabotage and quitting have been strong themes in my life thus far, as well as identifying myself as a “victim”, which is an attitude I am in the process of changing.

The beliefs I have instilled in my mind as a powerless victim are:

  • I am unable to cope in life.
  • I am too sensitive and thin-skinned.
  • I can’t take care of myself, I need to be looked after.
  • I am sick/emotionally unstable/have something wrong with me.
  • I’m not good enough.

I learnt these beliefs whilst growing up. I was rewarded when I displayed behaviour that exhibited these beliefs. I was treated less favourably if I showed independent and powerful behaviour.

Throughout my adult life I have attracted situations which have reinforced these beliefs- often very painful and destructive experiences.

I am now going to work on changing my beliefs in order to drastically improve my quality of life!!

My new mind-programming will be based on the following:

  • It is safe for me to be powerful and independent.
  • I have many talents and abilities that I can successfully utilize in my life.
  • I give myself permission to take care of and love myself.
  • I am free to express the true essence of me.
  • I am worthy of love, joy, fulfilment, success, health, fitness, abundance and wonderful life experiences!

My empowering reading has been:

Stop the Excuses, by Wayne Dyer.

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Quick Life Update

  • Brilliant day out at Center Parcs on Monday for a spa-day with friends. Also visited the brilliant swimming pool where we went on the insane new waterslide: Cyclone.

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    Cyclone

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    Cyclone- surprisingly scary!!

  • Enjoyed the Oscar highlights immensely on Monday. Loved Jennifer Lawrence’s dress and Joaquin Phoenix falling asleep- genius!! 
  • Shame to see Hugh Jackman miss out on Best Actor. Don’t think Daniel Day Lewis really needed another Oscar- greedy!
  • Had fun with my little niece last week, who is now 7 months old.
  • Saw “Flight” at the cinema- another amazing Denzel Washington performance. Great film.
  • Still not working, but am constantly thinking about what-on-earth I’m going to do to earn money. I’m currently ruling out a regular job at the moment, as it just never works out for me. Maybe that’s a mind programme I need to change.
  • Found a massive, enclosed field where we can let our rescue dog off the lead. This is a miracle as we’ve never been able to let her run free before- she’s always run off. We’ve found a secret weapon in her squeaky ball and some chicken!!
  • Favourite stuff on TV at the moment- The Following, Revenge, Got to Dance, Girls and looking forward to series three of Game of Thrones. Hoorah!!

Related post: Take Back Your Power

Little Me and The Angel

Yesterday I felt depressed. It had been building for a few days.

Before bed I decided to face up to the message in the sadness.

I asked my inner child, Little Me, what was wrong.

She replied that I hadn’t been listening to her needs- for fun, laughter, creativity, drawing, colours, play, adventure, and exploration.

I told her I was so sorry.

She also told me that she felt very sad about things that had happened (when I was younger) and that I was bullying, ignoring, criticizing, judging and belittling her-everytime I spoke to myself harshly. She said she felt scared and that she could never do anything right.

So I held her in my arms and told her how sorry I was and that I would be so much more loving and nurturing of her.

My guardian angel came very close then and sent delicate shivers up and down my back- she was helping me to release toxins and low energies that remained from painful experiences in my childhood. I felt so loved.

My guardian angel guided me to set up protection around myself and my inner child, and to draw the following pictures to cement the protection in my energetic field.

Before she left, she blessed me and lit up my inner child in golden light. I was guided to place Little Me in my heart and surround her with love.

This morning I woke up feeling so much more energized. Little Me was bouncing to get going.

I am so thankful to my guardian angel and to myself for taking the time to ask Little Me what was wrong and to actually listen.

Little Me with my childhood dog- Sam in the centre of the bubbles. My guardian angel behind me. The bubbles are my aura, which is gold and purple- protective colours. Protective angels surround.

Little Me with my childhood dog- Sam in the centre of the bubbles. My guardian angel behind me. The bubbles are my aura, which is gold and purple- protective colours. Protective angels surround.

Close-up of Little Me and my Guardian Angel.

Close-up of Little Me and my Guardian Angel.