It can be so easy to get bogged down in the everyday life of being an adult. We are overworked, overwhelmed, and overtired. Activities that we loved as children and in our young adult lives often get pushed aside by responsibilities and what we “have” to do as adults. Living this way can make it challenging to find the fun in life again. This fun that we remember is often referred to as our “inner child.”
As mothers, many of us have a moment where we miss who we used to be. The freedom from that time is something you don’t often experience anymore as a parent. While becoming a mom is a transformative experience, it is still beneficial to remember who you were in your younger days. You are still her, even if it feels like she’s disappeared. Evolution is inevitable, but that doesn’t mean that you can’t tap into this carefree fun that you used to have. There is also the possibility for healing if you’re holding onto something from your childhood that was traumatic.
What is the inner child?
The initial concept of the inner child came from psychiatrist Carl Jung. He linked it to memories and past experiences, which connected with hope for the future, creativity, innocence, and playfulness. According to a study in the International Journal of Qualitative Studies on Health and Well-being, it takes things a bit further and links the inner child as a source of strength since it helped form who you are as an adult.
When you have a healthy inner child, you take on the playfulness and fun of it. If you had more negative experiences, your inner child could be a place of traumatic memories. Connecting with your inner child, whether to remember the good things or heal the bad, is essential in helping you move forward.
Ways to Connect with Your Inner Child
1. Be open to this connection.
When attempting to connect with your inner child, you must keep an open mind. Think of it not as a separate entity but as a part of yourself. Research suggests that your early life experiences are about more than just development. They also play a crucial role in your well-being and health later in life.
2. Really take some time to observe your kids.
If there is anywhere you can witness the inner child in full force, it is with your own children. Kids are experts at living in the moment and closely looking at things around them. We often become desensitized to many things, but kids take joy wherever they can. Playing with your kids can help take you back to this place.
3. Take some time to reflect on your childhood.
Remembering your childhood will help you reconnect with who you used to be. This journey could be through looking at old pictures and your diary. Another great way is to visit your old home and talk to your parents, siblings, and childhood friends.
4. Pick an activity you loved as a child and participate in it now.
We often abandon many things we loved as children when we grow up. Think of some things that you enjoyed doing and bring them back. This could be an art class, dance class, book club, horseback riding lessons, and more. Share these things with your kids, and you will reap so many benefits.
5. Bring back your playfulness.
This could be through playing with your kids or being playful with your partner. By permitting yourself to be fun, you could actually become fun again. Carrying along your stress all of the time is exhausting. Not everything needs to be so serious all of the time.
There is a reason that they say that laughter is the best medicine. Laughing makes us feel good. Be silly with your kids. Tell knock-knock jokes. Have fun with it. It is not just great for bonding and creating fun memories, but for reconnecting with your inner child, who used to think everything was funny.
7. Talk to or write a letter to your inner child.
By talking or writing to your inner child, you can help heal past hurts. Writing is a powerful tool that can help you sort things out. It can also strengthen your bond with your inner child by addressing things in the past.
8. Do some writing about good things you remember.
As we age, we often lose some of our memories. Take some time to write about some happy memories you have. This exercise is great for reconnecting with our inner child and appreciating what we experienced.
9. Do some visualization and meditation.
Our minds are so busy that sometimes we need to pause to reconnect with ourselves. Meditation and visualization are great ways to tap into our thoughts and remember the fun of our childhoods. It’s good for us to be more mindful in motherhood.
10. Talk to a therapist.
Some therapists specialize in inner child therapy. If you have some painful memories that you need to deal with, it would be best to seek professional help. That way, this person can help support you as you confront these memories.
Connecting with your inner child is a great way to revisit yourself. Plus, who doesn’t want to have more fun? Who doesn’t want to play and laugh more? By reconnecting with the core of who you are, you can feel better and have more fun with your kids. Life can be super stressful, but finding the joy where we can is key to enjoying it.