If you are on the path to improve your Inner Child healing, I’ve found it helpful to understand the three classic mistakes that get people into trouble when working to heal their Inner Child relationship.
First, I will define these mistakes by giving you some background and examples about what they look like. This will help you to recognise them in your own life. Then I will compare and contrast them to an outer relationship example that everyone can relate to.
Healing the relationship with your Inner Child is certainly more subtle and tricky to achieve than you might realise at first. Understanding these classic pitfalls will help you, as the Inner Parent, to increase the love and joy with your Inner Child.
Here are the Three Classic Mistakes, which you are advised to avoid:
- You don’t even know you have an Inner Child in the first place.
- You don’t listen to your Inner Child.
- You don’t respond appropriately to your Inner Child.
Any one or a combination of these three mistakes typically creates every difficulty that most people will need to work through to heal their Inner Child relationship.
Classic Inner Child Healing Mistake #1:
Not Knowing You Have an Inner Child in The First Place
Think about it! You can’t really heal your Inner Child if you don’t know you have one or don’t really believe there is such as a thing as an “Inner Child.” So, let me be clear about this point.
Everyone has an Inner Child! This means YOU, even if you don’t think you have one, or even if you’ve never in your life even heard of the “Inner Child” concept.
In case this is a new for you, the way you would learn to recognise you Inner Child is as one-half of the ongoing inner dialogue that occurs inside your mind, which I call your Inner Conversations. These inner conversations take place inside your mind from morning until night, and no, you are not crazy.
Every normal person has these inner conversations and you can actually learn to slow them down and work with them directly. If you listen to your thoughts carefully, you will hear two distinct voices interacting with each other.
One voice, I call the Inner Parent. This comes from the style of parenting you received as a child. The way that your parents parented you, becomes copied and installed in your mind just like a computer program and this becomes the basis of the way you think and interact with the world. Traditional psychology would call this the ego.
The other side of your inner conversations, the voice we call the Inner Child, comes from who you were as a child, even though now you may be an adult. For most people, this is more of an important aspect to your total being than you could possibly realise.
Just like outer children have different moods and personalities, so does your Inner Child. Your Inner Child may present its voice as a small quiet whisper; or it may be the loud boisterous part of you that everyone knows.
Most people could also identify their Inner Child as their “feelings” or as the “intuitive” part of their inner conversations taking place constantly inside their mind. Another description often used by writers’ and artists to represent the Inner Child is a person’s heart.
Sometimes in the mainstream media, you can hear sceptics refer in a derogatory manner or comedians make jokes about people blaming their character defects on the “inner child” as if this were inconsequential.
This tends to diminish the importance and value of this inner voice, which is a big mistake because if your Inner Child is not happy, then you cannot be happy as a person, which is why one would want to engage in Inner Child healing in the first place. You’ll just have to trust me on this one.
Classic Inner Child Healing Mistake #2:
Not Listening to Your Inner Child
Let’s assume you may be someone who is aware that you have a personality called the Inner Child inside you. You’ve heard about it, read some books, or even attended some seminars or training’s on the topic. With the second classic mistake these people are simply not listening to this precious and important side of themselves even when they know this voice exists!
Your Inner Child is the intuitive self. It attempts to warn you when you are about to make a gigantic mistake in a life choice or perhaps in an outer relationship. Part of its function may show as the hairs that stand up on the back of your neck or a deep feeling of impending doom which you totally ignore at your peril. After “not listening” to such a communication, a person will often say, “I knew I shouldn’t have done that” Or “I just didn’t listen to myself.”
Another aspect of your Inner Child is that it provides the keys to your deep inner needs, so it’s often communicating directly about what would make you happy. Alternatively, perhaps it is providing you some clues that will move your life forward in a positive direction.
So when you get a clear and direct message from your Inner Child and you just plain aren’t listening, you are ignoring the advice and counsel of the best friend you have. Not paying close attention to these inner messages provided for your well-being; gee, that is plain crazy!
Classic Inner Child Healing Mistake #3:
Not Responding Appropriately to Your Inner Child
Many people know they have an Inner Child, and some are even listening and hearing what it has to say. Therefore, it truly is a shame when these same people make the third major mistake of not responding appropriately.
Why does this get them into trouble? Let me give you an easy-to-understand example using an outer relationship that will illustrate all three mistakes. Then it will be up to you to start doing the work needed to begin healing your Inner Child relationship.
Let’s use the familiar example of the Friend/Friend relationship” for comparison. Since it’s an “outer relationship”, it will be easier for you to relate.
Suppose your best friend makes the suggestion, “Let’s go to a movie.” Mistake 1 would mean that you didn’t even know you had a best friend. This might seem silly for you, to not know you have a best friend, but some people aren’t aware they have an Inner Child so, which one is worse?
Mistake 2 in this outer situation would be not even hearing your friend’s suggestion. You know you have a friend. Perhaps you just weren’t paying attention at the time or were distracted by another situation. Even though your friend has made a clear communication to you, for some reason you just don’t hear what he or she says.
There could be many reasons for this of course, but the end result is the same. What your friend has said or asked is just not been received in the awareness of your Inner Parent mind. In addition, your friend will feel hurt that you weren’t paying attention to him or her.
To illustrate the third mistake, lets start with what WOULD BE an appropriate response to your friend. How about something like, “Okay, what movie would you like to see?” or “Okay, what day were you thinking?” This appropriate response shows that:
- You were aware that you had a friend and he/she was speaking to you.
- You were paying attention to what your friend had to say.
- You cared enough about your friend to respond appropriately by asking a question or making a comment of perhaps just listening in an accepting manner.
Now, let’s illustrate an inappropriate response. Suppose you heard what your friend said, but then you didn’t respond at all? This would be hurtful to your friend because they would feel ignored.
Say you told your friend, “I’m too busy to hang out with you wasting time going to a movie.” This certainly wouldn’t feel too good either. What if you responded with something even more hurtful such as, “You idiot, I wouldn’t be caught dead going to a movie with you if you were the last person on earth.”
To put a simple take on these last communications, responding inappropriately to your Inner Child (and yes, even your outer friend) would be something that comes under the two categories of Neglect or Abuse.
I’m sure you’ve experienced your own variations of neglect and abuse in your outer relationships, so you KNOW how it feels to be on the receiving end of these kinds of behaviours. So why would you want to be doing this to your precious Inner Child? How do you think it feels about being neglected or abused?
Think about this “outer relationship” example (Friend/Friend) and then see if you can reinterpret this into the “inner relationship” between your Inner Parent and Inner Child. You will begin to see the many ways that you might be making these three classic mistakes without even realising it.
You could learn a lot more about this topic, and indeed, I’ve spent over 30 years researching and presenting ways to become more conscious as an Inner Parent so that YOU TOO can avoid these three classic mistakes in your self-parenting relationship.
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