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  • Miriam Gilmore

Why we Revisit your Childhood in Therapy

Worried to start therapy because you think you will have to revisit your childhood?

I'm here to tell you, yes, you will likely be encouraged to revisit your childhood in therapy...

Revisiting your childhood in therapy: Why it is important to look back first

Embarking on a journey of healing often involves delving into our past, especially our childhood experiences. While it may seem counterintuitive to look backward, this process plays a pivotal role in therapy and counselling. In this blog post, we'll explore why revisiting childhood experiences is a crucial aspect of personal growth, how our early years shape us as adults, and why embracing this process can lead to positive transformation.

Childhood: The Root Cause of Our Present

I like to think of the mind as a tree, with the roots being our childhood development. All the foundations for who we are today lay under the surface, like roots of a tree, unseen but pivotal in shaping who we are.

Our beliefs, perceptions, and coping mechanisms take root in our childhood. However, because we don't see the roots of the tree we presume we only consist of the parts we do see, the trunk, the branches, the leaves, etc. Examining these deep-rooted experiences therefore can be challenging and should be practiced with a qualified therapist or counsellor.

Our childhood experiences: The root cause (tree)

The Power of Looking Below the Surface

Recognising how childhood experiences have shaped us is a powerful process. It empowers us to break free from limiting patterns, make conscious choices, and build healthier relationships.

Imagine a rock underground, and the impact it would have on the root system of the tree. Suppose that rock is large enough to cause the tree to be weakened in a particular area, or perhaps it just changes the direction of growth. The rock could be likened to a moment in your childhood that had a knock-on affect. Now, I'm not suggesting we dig harshly into the soil and remove the rock, but

by identifying and recognising it, we take action to notice its impact on new growth and have the insight to grow differently in the future.

By addressing unresolved childhood traumas, we can release emotional burdens and foster resilience. This self-awareness is a crucial step towards growing into the person you want to become.

Why does my Therapist use Psychodynamic Theory?

Psychodynamic theory (a psychological approach) suggests that early experiences shape the development of our personality and behaviour. Our interactions with caregivers, family dynamics, and pivotal events form the building blocks of who we become as adults.

This theory, and those that practice it, believe that our unconscious mind holds onto emotions, desires, and unresolved conflicts from childhood. These unconscious influences, i.e. the rock in the root system, can manifest in adulthood, impacting our choices, relationships, and emotional well-being. Revisiting childhood experiences in therapy illuminates the origins of our thought patterns, emotional responses, and relationship dynamics, allowing you to access and process these hidden aspects.

Embracing the Therapeutic Process and Positive Transformation

Initiating therapy to heal childhood experiences and traumas is a courageous step toward self-discovery and healing. A skilled therapist provides a safe space to explore these sensitive topics, guiding us through the process of understanding and integrating past experiences into our present lives. Being open to self-reflection encourages emotional growth, enhances self-compassion, and paves the way for a more fulfilling life.

Revisiting childhood experiences can be daunting, but it is also an opportunity for liberation. By understanding the root causes of our behaviours, we gain the ability to make intentional changes. This awareness enables us to transform negative cycles into positive ones, improve self-esteem, and foster emotional well-being. Ultimately, recognising how our past has shaped us empowers us to shape our future.

By discussing childhood experiences in therapy we unlock the mysteries of our behaviours, emotions, and relationships. Embracing this journey with a trained therapist empowers us to heal, release, and evolve.

If you're ready to embark on this journey of self-discovery, consider starting therapy as a meaningful step towards becoming the person you want to be.

Arrange your FREE 20 minute call today with FIR Counselling and Psychotherapy

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