The Gentle Mind

Cognitive Behavioural Therapy and hypnotherapy for your inner child

“The Inner Child”. It sounds a cliché.

It’s not. It’s an idea that lies close to common sense.

Why? Because inside us there’s a version of all the people we have ever been.

Somewhere in you is a confused teenager, a sad child, a jealous or hungry infant. Someone who saw their parents row, domestic violence.

No version of us entirely disappears, it is merely added to. It’s all in us.

And it can surface when we least expect it.

And the legacy?

Some of our inner children are likely not to be especially well.

You might be dealing with a hurt that you have no idea how to cope with, you might have suffered a loss without any chance to understand who and what is to blame, you might be lonely, distressed or ashamed.

It goes on. No one might have taken proper care of you during a crisis, or bothered to sympathise with your unusual difficulties at school.

So, despite your pain, it isn’t that the inner child’s cries are in any danger of breaking through into the public realm.

And that’s precisely the problem.

Inner children cause distress not because they are too present, but because they are not present enough. And no one knows when they may turn up.

In effect, they have been too effectively locked away. Their cries have been seamlessly forgotten and ignored. They have been pushed into a sound-proof chamber from which no murmur emerges. And yet still they exist.

What we are dealing with unwanted restless ghosts who have not been appeased or understood —  but whose ongoing ignored unhappiness threatens the course of our lives.

This deep-down sobbing undermines your confidence and saps your smiles. To use the metaphor of a house, you’re resting on foundations with ghosts and rot below the ground floor.

The answer? Reparenting. Your inner child needs to be found, the distinctive troubles understood and their pains soothed, becalmed, even taken away.

In a perfect world, it’s your parents who would carry out this work at the time the difficulties arose.

But in the real world, some of the work gets left behind and lingers, or is never done.

This means you need to become parents to the children you once were. We need to gather together our adult capacities for kindness, reassurance, empathy, generosity and warmth and direct these towards the hurting three or five or fifteen-year-olds who still exist in our minds.

We need to take stock of your younger sorrows, trauma and distresses and help them in a way they were not helped at the time.

What we’re doing is helping ourselves right now. Because - back to the house metaphor - you’re standing on that unstable floor in a badly built home. And it could cave in at any moment.

For a sense of what the work of reparenting might look like this is how Cognitive Behavioural Therapy and hypnotherapy can help.

Working together we can go back and see the child. Once we’re there we have several choices. We can ‘talk’ to them and reassure them that it will be alright. The future will be fine. Take away the worry. Alternatively, we can, under hypnosis, go back, visualise the scene, bring it to life and take away the meaning. Accept it happening, but move forward. Take the learnings, leave the meaning behind.

It leaves you richer for the experience and travelling forward in life with less burden.

As they say, life is lived forward but understood backwards.

Now, doesn’t that sound like you’ve been a great parent to yourself?

Feel free to talk to me - I’m James Thomas a Cognitive Behavioural Hypnotherapist.

I use hypnosis, amongst other techniques, to apply CBT to deal with your past. To help you accept it, come to terms with it and move on.

I cover all of Lincolnshire with my rooms in Louth and Lincoln.

You can get in touch with me at or call 07787563099.

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