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Nevermind Your Inner Child; Tame Your Outer Child

June 9, 2011 2 comments

Getting ready for summer, I am doing daily dialogues with my outer child.  I’m wondering if using this self awareness tool (outer child) might help some of you also.

What is outer child, you ask?

Well, you’ve already met your inner child.  But whereas your inner child is all about feelings, Outer is all about behavior.  Outer is the self-sabotaging nemesis of your personality – the part that breaks your diet and gets attracted to all the wrong people.

I use outer child when I know I’m going to be tempted to do some self-defeating things.  In my case,  this means overeating (and gaining weight that is very hard to loose).

In keeping tabs on my outer child, I’ve learned how overcome many other self-defeating patterns over the years.  I’ve managed to improve my relationships and become (or act like) the self-possessed adult I’ve always wanted to become.

I’ve written extensively about outer child in Journey from Abandonment to Healing or Journey from Heartbreak to Connection.  I’ve taught people to perform their own “outer child work” during my intensive abandonment recovery workshops.

To help you get in touch with your own outer child, let me explain:  Outer is the impulsive, obstinate, self-centered nine-year old within all of us.  Outer wants what Outer wants now, and isn’t particular about how it goes about getting it – and that includes taking out bad moods on innocent bystanders in your life, drinking too much, spending too much money, or binging on fattening food when you, the adult, is steadfastly sticking to a diet (or so you thought).

Outer child wreaks havoc in our relationships, because it’s born of unresolved abandonment.  Outer acts out our inner child’s fear of abandonment.  For example, it aims its emotional suction cups at our prospective partners and scares them away.

Another thing about Outer is that it fights change – especially change initiated by you, the adult.  Outer balks at doing the right thing and only wants things that are bad for your health, figure, or bank account.

In my case, I’m hoping that by once again, dragging Outer out of the bunkers and into the daylight, I can get to subvert its mission, rather than letting it subvert mine (which is to maintain my figure, my relationships, and my self-respect).  I hope the same for you.

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