Working With My Inner Child
This month I’m reflecting on the fact that I’m feeling pretty proud of myself. That may sound a bit arrogant, but it’s really just good ol’ self-nurturing. This past week my inner child has taken some big emotional risks. She and I are both pleased that she had the courage to do it, and are even more pleased that it turned out well.
That probably sounds weird, so I’ll explain. I believe that even though I am a grown, capable, competent adult, I still have inside myself an inner child who is representative of who I was when I was young. My inner child is about five years old, and usually feels scared, lonely, incompetent and vulnerable.
Most of the time my inner Sandy stays quiet and lets the adult Sandy make decisions and go about the day. However, when I’m in a new situation where I’m uncertain about what I’m doing or how to proceed, my inner child feels vulnerable and becomes huge and loud. This is because her old fears and anxieties begin to take over.
In those situations my challenge is to quiet the inner child and reassure her that Sandy-the-adult has things under control. That all she (the child) has to do is relax and let me (the adult) handle the situation. When I’m able to do that, I can move ahead, stretch my comfort zone, and grow and learn new things.
That is what I did last weekend, which is why I’m feeling proud of myself.
In order to market my new book, Moving Up To Management: Leadership and Management Skills for New Supervisors, I attended a conference as a presenter and also an exhibitor in the Trade Show. This was a new experience for me, and it was a bit daunting. However, it needed to happen, so my inner child and I had to work on the fact that we could do it and still survive.
She agreed that as a five-year-old she had no clue how to talk in front of a group or market a book, but she thought that maybe the adult I am now could do it. So, she sat back, let the adult part of me handle it, and it turned out well.
I believe that we all have an inner child who is afraid, and occasionally wants to be in control in order to keep us emotionally and/or physically safe. The challenge is for the adult you are now to work with that child (with inner dialogue) and help him/her understand that you will make sure all turns out well.
You do this the same as you would if you had a small child by the hand and s/he was feeling afraid. Using positive, reassuring statements such as “It’ll be fine”, “We can do this”, and “I have it under control”, will help to reassure your inner child that all will be well.
So, you might want to ask yourself, how old is my inner child? What are his/her fears? In what situations does s/he become large and try to run the show? What does s/he need to know, hear, and understand, in order to feel safe and secure?
If you meet the needs of your inner child by being strong, in charge, and letting him/her know it’s safe, you will be able to face and walk through your fears, stretch your comfort zone, grow, and feel proud of yourself.
Please comment so others can benefit from your wisdom and experience.
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