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CHILD System

The CHILD System
Section 2: Tools for Recovery

from Low Self-Esteem
Self-Esteem Seekers Anonymous -

The SEA's Program of Recovery
By: James J. Messina, Ph.D.

The CHILD System - For self-healing when feeling alone, forgotten or abandoned
In order to grow stronger in self-esteem, you will need to "parent'' your inner child who is nurture needy. This inner child lacks the experience of being freely accepted and loved in an unconditional manner. The SEA's CHILD System is a way in which you can gain some inner healing and increase in the strength needed to pursue ongoing recovery when feeling lonely, forgotten, or abandoned. The SEA's CHILD System is:

 C Calm
H Heal
  I Inform
L Love
  D Direct


C - Calm
When you are feeling ill at ease, depressed, lost, hopeless, or ready to give up on yourself, you first need to calm yourself down. Utilize the TEA, ALERT, ANGER, or LET GO system to help you gain a healthy, rational, and more realistic perspective about what is happening to you.

H - Heal
Second, you need to heal your spirit by placing yourself into a relaxed, quiet, and reflective mood and getting in touch with the inner child who needs nurturing, affirmation, and comforting. Visualize holding this child in your arms as your Higher Power embraces you both. Healing comes from the recognition that your inner child is not alone in this life struggle. There is the adult "you'' and your Higher Power ready to embrace, care for, and support your inner child. Growing Down: Tools for Healing the Inner Child, Tools for Personal Growth and Tools for Handling Loss by Jim Messina, Ph.D. and the SEA's Twelve Steps are sources of spirituality and inner child growth.

I - Inform
Third, you need to inform your inner child of the positive attributes, competencies, skills and abilities which you possess to enable your inner child to prevail and succeed in any crisis, challenge, or tribulation currently causing the pressure, anxiety, and tension. Positively reinforcing and affirming your inner child is giving yourself the "self-talk'' necessary to believe in: I am, I can, and I will statements of encouragement, deservedness, and self-confidence to prevail in your recovery process.

L - Love

Fourth, you need to love your inner child in an unconditional way. You need to embrace your inner child for just being you rather than for what you can do or accomplish in life. Loving your inner child, for being who you are, will continue the healing within necessary to prevail against any current sense of failure, disappointment or setback you may have been experiencing.

D -Direct
Fifth, you need to direct your inner child to take care of you by being there for you when you need it. Direct your inner child to be the beacon of your spirituality and your link with your Higher Power. Direct yourself to remember that you are never alone, abandoned, or forgotten when your inner child and your Higher Power are with you. Your inner child is a source of strength and hope for you when the struggles become overwhelming.