Shadow Work and How it Helps Heal Your Inner Child

Nov 3
If you’ve been looking to jump-start your healing journey, we have you covered. Shadow work is a vital part of healing your inner child. Arguably, you can’t truly heal your inner child without doing shadow work. We all have an inner child living within us that wants to feel understood, heard, and loved. An inner child is a representation of you as a child, and it subconsciously absorbs information and emotions from the moment we are born. Often, we enter adulthood with inner children that are wounded and traumatized.
Are you ready to heal your inner child and live a life that is more aligned with your authentic self? Join us as we discuss how to practice shadow work.
What is shadow work?
Shadow work is the act of uncovering and exploring our shadow selves. Psychologist Carl Jung popularized the idea of the inner shadow and defines it as the parts of you that you subconsciously reject and suppress. The shadow archetype of our personalities includes the dark and emotional side of ourselves. Like our inner child, our shadow self lies dormant within us until we put in the work to bring it to light.

Practicing shadow work is working with your subconscious mind to uncover the parts of yourself that you suppress. This can include trauma, negative personality traits, and more. Keep in mind that there is nothing wrong with your shadow self, and it doesn’t need to be hidden; it needs to be understood. Practicing shadow work allows us to develop further self-awareness, self-acceptance, and compassion.

How shadow work helps heal your inner child
Shadow work is a crucial part of healing our inner child. As we mentioned, our inner shadow and inner child are pretty similar. They are both pieces of ourselves that we’ve kept locked away for years. Shadow work’s focus is on uncovering, while inner child work is focused on healing. Practicing the two together will feel effortless as they easily play off of each other. Shadow work helps prepare you to do the inner child work, as you cannot heal wounds you’re unaware of. 

Putting in the work to uncover your shadow will bring awareness to the parts of your inner child that need healing. It helps connect us to our most authentic selves and promotes self-awareness. On top of that, shadow work promotes confidence, creativity, and self-acceptance. It helps us see ourselves as the sum of our parts - as one whole being.
How to practice shadow work
Feeling motivated to do your shadow work and heal your inner child? Let’s get into practice. Grab a journal because it’s time to get writing! Journaling is the easiest way to practice shadow work because it allows us to get all of our thoughts onto paper. If therapy is accessible to you, we recommend taking this journey with a therapist to help you organize and make sense of your emotions. If you can’t attend therapy, or if you don’t want to, don’t worry. You can successfully practice shadow work on your own.

If you’re not sure where to start, try using these inner child healing journal prompts:
  • Describe your best and worst childhood memory
  • What emotions bring out the worst in you and why
  • List your parent’s best and worst traits - and compare them to yourself
  • What makes you feel self-conscious, ashamed, or embarrassed
  • What are you the most afraid of and why
  • What makes you feel the most valued
  • What traits do you wish you didn’t have
  • Are there any emotions you avoid feeling and why
  • How do you think people view you and how that makes you feel

These are just examples to help you get started - you can start wherever you feel pulled to the most. While practicing shadow work, it’s crucial to practice patience, compassion, and love towards yourself. This journey won’t be an easy one, but it will be worth it and your inner child will thank you.

For more advice on shadow work, check out Youtuber Candace van Dell’s Why doing shadow work is a must!