Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Healing the Inner Child Part 3

This is the third in a series of articles by Robert Najemy of Holistic Harmony on Healing the Inner child (Clarity issue 168).  I will be sharing the rest of the articles with you as well!

Note:
The work described in this article usually requires
Guidance and support by a person experienced in this work.

LIST OF CHILDHOOD EXPERIENCES
Wherever the questions below refer to our parents or other persons of our childhood, we must also think of stepmothers, stepfathers, grandparents, uncles, aunts, brothers and sisters, cousins, teachers and any other persons who existed in our lives as a child up to the age of 18.
Remember in each case to ask yourself, which beliefs and childhood assumptions were developed as a result of that experience?
1. Was there someone who became angry with you, scolded you, rejected you or accused you? Who and when?
2. Were there people in your family or surroundings who fought among themselves or rejected or hurt one another? Who and when?
3. Have you ever experienced the feeling of abandonment? Were you ever left alone? Have you ever felt that others didn't understand you, or that you received no support?
4. Did you ever feel the need for more affection, tenderness or expression of love? During which periods of your life?
5. Were there persons in your environment who were often ill or who often spoke of illness? Did they ever blame you for their illness or did you ever feel guilty concerning their illness?
6. Did you ever experience the feeling of humiliation in the presence of others or in relationship with others?
7. Were you ever compared to others as to whether you were less or more capable or worthy? To whom, in which instances, and in connection with which abilities or character traits?
8. Have you ever lost a loved one? Who and when?
9. Did anyone ever approach you sexually without your consent? Who, when, and how did you feel?
10. Were you ever aware of your parents or anyone else making love? Who and when? How did you feel and what did you think?
11. Did your parents ever state that you were the only reason they stayed together, and that this had been a big sacrifice on their part? Did they ever tell you they had sacrificed a great deal for your sake, and that you were indebted to them? What exactly do they believe you owe them?
12. Did anyone ever accuse you of being the cause of his or her unhappiness, illness or problems? Who accused you and about what exactly? What did they mean by saying that it was your fault? What does this statement mean to you? According to them, what should you have done or be doing now?
13. Did anyone ever say you would never achieve anything in your life, that you are lazy, incompetent, or unintelligent?
14. Were you ever caught playing with your genitals (alone or with others), and did anyone make you feel guilty about that?
15. Did anyone speak about guilt and punishment from a person, a parent, the police or God? About what types of guilt and what type of punishment?
16. Did any teacher ever make you feel humiliated in front of other children?
17. Did you ever feel rejection or inferior in the company of other children? By whom? Inferior by what criteria?
18. Were you ever told you were responsible for the general well being of your siblings or others, and that whatever happened to them was your responsibility? Concerning what matters were you "responsible"?
19. Were you ever made to understand in some way (negative or positive) that in order for someone to be acceptable and lovable, one must:
___a. Be better than the others?
___b. Be first at everything?
___c. Be perfect, without faults?
___d. Be intelligent and clever?
___e. Be handsome / beautiful?
___f. Have perfect order and cleanliness at home?
___g. Have great success in his/her love life?
___h. Be financially and socially successful?
___i. Be accepted by everyone?
___j. Be active in many ways? Achieve many things?
___k. Always satisfy the other's needs?
___l. Never say "no" to others?
___m. Never express his/her personal needs?
20. Did anyone ever make you believe in some way that you were incapable of thinking, making decisions, or achieving things by yourself, and that you would always need to depend on others? Who passed on this message to you? About what matters were you supposedly "incapable" of making decisions or handling life properly?
21. Did you ever have role models (parents, older siblings or others) who were, or still are, so dynamic and competent that you felt:
a. The need to reach their level of achievement?
b. The need to prove your self-worth in some way?
c. Despair, self-rejection, abandonment of effort, self-destructive tendencies (possibly subconscious), because you believed you could never measure up to them?
22. Has there ever been in your environment someone with unexpected, unpredictable, nervous or even schizophrenic behavior (possibly alcohol or drug induced) making it difficult for you to anticipate what he or she might do next? Have they engaged in violent behavior (physical or psychological)? By whom, and what was the behavior like?
23. Have you felt rejection towards or shame concerning one of your parents? For whom and why?
24. Did you ever discover that one of your parents had an extra-marital affair? When and under what circumstances? How did you feel about that?
25. Did anyone speak to you about a vengeful, punishing God or about the "Devil?"
26. Did you ever feel that they told you one thing but did another, that there was no consistency in their words, that they had a double standard - one for themselves and another for others - or that they were hypocritical, false and deceptive?
27. Upon what was your parents' security based?
___a) on money?
___b) on the others' opinions?
___c) on education?
___d) on personal power?
___e) on family unity?
___f) on property?
___g) on one's spouse?
___h) other? _________________________
28. Were you a spoiled child who always got whatever you wanted, and to whom no one ever refused a favor?
29. Did anyone suppress your freedom of movement and expression? Did they force you to do things you did not want to do? (study, visits, dress). Did they forbid you to do things you wanted to do? What were you forced to do or prevented from doing?
30. (FOR WOMEN). Did anyone in some way try to make you believe that since you are a "girl":
a. You are worth less than a man?
b. You are not safe without a man?
c. Sex is dirty (a sin)?
d. You must be married in order to be socially accepted?
e. You are less competent than men?
f. Your only mission is to serve others?
g. You must not express your needs, feelings or opinions?
h. You must submit yourself to your husband?
i. You must be attractive to be acceptable?
j. You must compete with men.
k. You must never trust men.
l. Men want you for sex only.
m. You are in danger of being suppressed by men.
31. (FOR MEN). Did anyone in some way try to make you believe that since you are a "boy":
a. You must be strong?
b. You must be superior, more competent, stronger and more intelligent than your wife?
c. Your self-worth is measured according to the success of your love life or the number of your sexual conquests?
d. Your worth is measured according to your professional (financial) success?
e. You must compare yourself with other men?
f. You are in danger of being controlled by women.

YOUR OWN LIST
Having noted the above mentioned possible childhood experiences that may have conditioned your subconscious to react in undesirable ways (fear, hurt, shame, guilt, anger, pain) to certain behaviors, events and situations, the next step is add any other experiences that are not listed here.

Now decide which of these past experiences you would like to free yourself from first. You will move on to work with the others after discharging and transforming the first. It is more effective to work with one experience at a time.

Many get lost and have no success, because they put all of their problems together and get confused and fail to get free. You might complain that there are so many, that it will take years to become free working on them one by one.

There are two answers to this. First of all, years is not a long time. Most people never get free, and those who undergo psychotherapy often take many years to get free. My experience is that if you begin to do this work, preferably with an experienced guide, that you can discharge most singular experiences (perhaps not all), in a few days or at least in a few weeks, with energy psychology.

Some few experiences may take longer to discharge - the main obstacle being our own inner resistance to let go of the pain, resentment, anger or guilt. The techniques work as long as we want them to work. If we are identified with our pain or anger or even guilt and wear them like medals of war for which we are proud and feel our self-worth through them, then we simply do not want to let them go. This is our main obstacle, fear of happiness and fear of actual freedom.

The second answer is that, when we work on a particular experience which is still subconsciously charged with fear, anger, hurt or guilt and resolve those emotional energies with some form of energy psychology, then the energy of those emotions in all of our other similar past experiences is lessened.

When we have worked with around 20% of the these individual experiences the rest of them simply lose their power and do not actually need to be worked on individually. Thus it is important that you now chose one particular past event you would like to get free from.

You could then employ your preferred method of energy psychology or first make the following analysis of that particular experience and then employ your preferred techniques.

Continued in the next issue.

Adapted from the book The Psychology of Happiness by Robert Elias Najemy  http://www.HolisticHarmony.com/ebookscb/index.asp

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