SHIFT or SUPPORT
A PORTRAIT & JOURNAL EXERCISE
The “Shift or Support” exercise is simple and (when practiced frequently) can change your reflection...
because it LITERALLY creates new neural pathways and closes old ones!
Excitement. Fear. Peace. Anger. Disgust. Shame. Awe.
When viewing your gallery and portraits, especially for the first time, it is natural for these intense emotions to come up.
These thoughts and words may seem brutal, but then again it is natural as we’ve been conditioned to shame our bodies.
Some people weep and others laugh; allow whatever comes up to come out.
These thoughts (positive and/or negative) can be powerful
embodiment and self-love integration tools if used in the correct way.
This is where the "Shift or Support" exercise comes into play.
What You'll Need:
- Somewhere private that you can be alone
- Your gallery, portraits, or a single image
- 15-20 minutes to browse your gallery image-by-image
- Your journal and something to write with
Step 1: Note It
At the top of your fresh journal page write the title "Shift or Support: Seeing My Embodiment Session For The First Time" followed by the date
- Below your title, write the heading "Noting"
- Open your gallery and select/enlarge the first image (though it is tempting, try not to scroll your entire gallery)
- View/click through your images one-by-one. Take your time!
- ANY TIME a thought, comment, emotion, or sensation (positive or negative) arises write a bullet under "Noting"
- Do NOT dismiss ANY thought or a feeling. Write it down.
Once you have viewed every image, look at the words, thoughts, comments, emotions, and sensations that you noted.
- Are there any words repeated?
- Is there a specific part of your body that you tend to praise or criticize?
- Are there overlapping themes (generally negative, generally positive, etc.)?
Set a timer for 3-5 minutes and journal your overall impression of your list.
Step 2: Shift or Support It
"See It. Send It LOVE. Deny or Grant It Permission. Shift or Support It."
In this section, you will be speaking with your thought(s). Talk to it like it is a person...even if you don’t fully believe your words yet (self-love is a slow process and that is okay).
1. Title this section "Shift or Support."
2. Write the lists below (leaving 1-2 lines of space for you to fill in in a moment):
SEND IT LOVE:
DENY IT PERMISSION:
SEND IT LOVE:
GRANT IT PERMISSION:
3. Look back at your list from your "Noting" section and select one negative & one positive to start with.
a. NEGATIVE: a thought that critiques your body, your expression, or your being
b. POSITIVE: a thought that praises your body, your expression, or your being
4. Following the examples below, fill in your "POSITIVE" and "NEGATIVE" lists using the two notes you've selected.
· please note that you "shift negative thoughts" and "support positive ones"
· NEGATIVE=SHIFT POSITIVE=SUPPORT
5. Speak to each one like it is a person. Even if you don’t fully believe your words yet because self-love is a slow process and that is okay.
NEGATIVE THOUGHT (EXAMPLE)
SEE IT: “I hear you Thought, saying “I hate my stomach, I wish it were flat.”
SEND IT LOVE: "I send you love Thought, I understand why you’d think it’s okay to say that because of how I’ve allowed myself and others to speak to my body in the past.”
DENY IT PERMISSION: “But Thought, you are no longer welcome here.”
SHIFT IT: “I love my stomach and how it is a sign that my body and mind are healthy. It’s amazing that I can allow myself to be so present in a moment that the thought of ‘sucking-it-in’ is nowhere near my mind.”
POSITIVE THOUGHT (EXAMPLE)
SEE IT: "I hear you Thought, saying “I look beautiful, my skin is glowing.”
SEND IT LOVE: "I send you love Thought, thank you for noting my beauty and confidence."
GRANT IT PERMISSION: "Thought, you are welcome anytime.”
SUPPORT IT: "I love that I can feel confident. My skin deserves the investment I make on my self-care routine at Sephora every month.”
6. Select at least three more notes from your "Noting" list and continue the process!
Step 3: Practice!
- After you've finished Steps 1 & 2, return to your gallery/images holding your 'Shifts' and 'Supports' in your mind like a mantra.
- As you did in Step 1, re-open your gallery and select/enlarge the first image. View/click through your images one-by-one.
- Anytime a REPEAT thought comes up (the same thought with the same image from Step 1) say your 'Shift' or 'Support' mantra out loud and move forward.
- if it is a 'positive repeat' hit the heart icon on the image and add it to your favorites list ❤️
- Anytime a NEW thought comes up, practice 'Shift or Support' in your mind!
- Finally, when you have finished clicking through your portraits, set a timer for 3-5 minutes and journal your overall takeaway from your first time practicing the 'Shift or Support'
- Were there more or less negative thoughts your second time looking at your image(s)?
- Is there a specific part of your body that deserves more love and appreciation from you? How so?
- When are there other times that you can use this practice?
- BONUS: bullet 5 things you love about yourself
This practice is NOT just to use with your photoshoot(s).
Whether you're scrolling your phone's photo album or looking in the mirror PRACTICE!
Anytime, in daily life, a thought, comment, emotion, or sensation (that's praising or critiquing your body and/or being) arises...
"Note it. See It. Send It LOVE. Deny or Grant It Permission. Shift or Support It."
How did this go for you? Is anything you'd like to add? Or simply just want to send some love (or constructive criticism)?
Please reach out, I'd LOVE to hear from you!