7 Ways to Reconnect with Your Inner Child

Experience the simple joy and wonder of living again.

Nov 26, 2020

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There is a child in everyone. But sometimes, people forget to enjoy the playful, lighthearted side of life. Reconnecting with your inner child means taking life a little less seriously. It means allowing yourself time to play, explore, laugh, and see the world with both joy and awe.

Play!

Adult responsibilities, like paying the bills or running errands, can make you take life too seriously sometimes. Everyone needs to break out of their shell every once and a while. Dance with friends. Run around in a field. Have a water balloon fight. Have a good laugh. When you approach life with a playful attitude, everyday situations become exciting, entertaining, and fun! 

Even when you deal with difficult situations, like in the workplace or during social interactions, you can use playfulness to resolve tension. This free spirited, lighthearted nature gives you a more positive outlook so you can cope with life in positive, healthy ways. 

Research published in Frontiers of Psychology explores how adult playfulness has a whole host of benefits, such as improved work and academic performance and increased creativity and motivation. People who remain playful and young at heart actually live longer! 

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Express yourself openly and honestly

Children seem to fearlessly express themselves by dancing, laughing, and playing! They certainly know how to tell it like it is, too and sometimes they are brutally honest!

As you grow older, societal norms tend to influence your behaviors. You may become shy or afraid to express yourself. You may speak out less, perhaps out of fear of rejection. 

Your authentic self deserves to shine! When you hold back on expressing your true feelings, you miss out on valuable connections and experiences. Channel your inner child again by learning to communicate openly and honestly. Not everyone may like what you have to say, and that’s okay! When you express yourself, you offer your unique perspective to the world and ultimately attract people that genuinely like you.

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Spend time with children

What better way to bring out your inner child than to spend more time with kids? Whether you are telling jokes, running around, or playing games, making time to spend with your kids helps tap into your inner playfulness and youthful expression. You also get to share your own knowledge to help young ones learn and grow. If you don’t have children, you might spend time with children of your friends or relatives. 

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Embrace learning

Adults tend to focus on problem solving and getting things done. Children live with an openness to learn and explore the world with all of its possibilities. You can connect to your inner child by letting go of the need to fix and control all the time. Instead, keep an open mind and see the learning opportunities around you each day.

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Look up!

Sometimes people see life in a tunnel vision, looking down at their phone screens or rushing to the next meeting. Take a moment to pause and look up at the sky. The sun, the clouds, the moon, and the stars will remind you to pause once and in a while, to appreciate your surroundings like a child.

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Get creative

Kids love to learn through arts and crafts, movement, coloring, singing, you name it! You can bring out your inner child, too, through creative activityand get lots of bonus health benefits.  

According to Medical News Today, artistic self-expression helps cope with trauma, manage emotions, and promotes overall wellbeing.

Need some inspiration? You can find plenty of adult coloring books to get your creative juices flowing. Or,  start some DIY projects for decorating your home or workspace. 

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Heal the wounded inner child

Much of your personality and habits develop during early stages of life. As you get older, you may continue to act out patterns learned from childhood without realizing it.

When you find yourself stuck in life, you may need to heal the wounded inner child. According to The American Journal of Psychotherapy, cognitive behavioral therapists often have patients reconnect to the inner child in order to heal themselves of maladaptive emotional and behavioral patterns formed while growing up. In order to release negative cycles, it requires healing those wounds of the past. 

Close your eyes. Imagine yourself as a small child again. What would you say to that child to comfort them? You can even write a letter to guide your inner child. This practice will help heal from wounds from the past and develop self-compassion. You’ll have an easier time forgiving yourself of mistakes you hold onto when you see yourself as an innocent child. 

True adulthood means to nurture and listen to that inner child. It means to listen to the wounds of the past, to respond to those needs, and heal. When you reconnect with your inner child, you become more aware of the motivations behind your behaviors, emotions, and relationships. Through that process of inner awareness,

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ALLISON MICHELLE DIENSTMAN, CONTRIBUTOR
Working from her laptop as a freelance writer, Allison lives as a digital nomad, exploring the world while sharing positivity and laughter. She is a lover of language, travel, music, and creativity with a degree in Chinese language and literature.