How to Be Seen, Really Seen, in Front of a Camera

    —
August 26, 2019

Feeling vulnerable, exposed, or uncomfortable in front of a camera is perfectly normal. While we might pose confidently, it isn’t uncommon to be wondering what others will see about us. Why are we so frightened?

Underneath our fear of being criticized, we are afraid of truly emanating from our cores—of sharing our brilliant and unique essence.

The problem is that we don’t know how to be seen.

WHAT ARE YOU HIDING?

The first thought that comes to my mind when considering this question is the well-known passage from Marianne Williamson entitled, “Our Deepest Fear.”’

“Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate.
 Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. It is our light, not our darkness, that most frightens us. We ask ourselves, Who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, handsome, talented and fabulous? Actually, who are you not to be?
 You are a child of God.
 Your playing small does not serve the world.
 There is nothing enlightened about shrinking 
so that other people won’t feel insecure around you. We are all meant to shine, as children do.
 We were born to make manifest the glory of God within us. It is not just in some; it is in everyone.
 And, as we let our own light shine, we consciously give other people permission to do the same.
 As we are liberated from our fear,
 our presence automatically liberates others.”

—Marianne Williamson

Here’s what I take from this: When we let our own unique light shine, we can begin to understand our own truth.

The act of expression gives others permission to release their own inhibitions. Whether I’m in a session with someone, or out in the world, I am constantly reminded of this.


WHAT DOES IT MEAN TO BE SEEN?

Whether we’re pointing it at a person, a landscape or a building, a camera can reveal the truth. So—isn’t it time that you allow the camera to be your friend? What if the camera’s deepest desire is for you to be fully seen as the magnificent, radiant, talented and perfect person that you really are?

Perhaps you’d begin to regard the camera as an opportunity to be seen. Whether it’s by an intimate partner, our boss or the checkout person at the supermarket, being seen can make an entire day brighter. We all wish to be authentically recognized for our uniqueness; we all wish to be loved, just the way that we are.

Imagine how fearless you’d feel if, in every moment and throughout every situation in your life, you knew without a shadow of a doubt that every person you met fully saw your unique gifts, saw your wholeness. The floodgates would open and you’d be unstoppable. There would be no limiting thoughts in your awareness because you’d know that everyone truly sees and supports your grandest expression!

When we are present in our true spirit, nothing can break it. And what better way to practice that than by doing so in front of a camera? Stare at the lens and imagine it’s  reflecting love, praise and devotion back to you. Imagine it’s the inside of your heart, winking at you. That may sound like a stretch, but it sure beats resisting the process every time. Take the exciting opportunity to be seen—really seen—in front of the camera.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR: CARL STUDNA



Author Photo Carl Studna How to Be Seen

Carl Studna is a world-renowned photographer and videographer, inspirational
speaker, teacher and multi-award-winning au
thor of the books CLICK! Choosing Love…One Frame at a Time and Evolution of Loving.

Over the past 30 years, Carl has been assigned all over the world to shoot CD and album covers, book covers, and other publicity platforms for musicians, teachers and authors such as Paul McCartney, George Harrison, James Brown, Jefferson Airplane, Eric Clapton, Elton John, Genesis, Kenny Loggins, His Holiness the Dalai Lama, Deepak Chopra, Tom Robbins, Ram Dass, Marianne Williamson and John Bradshaw, and his work has appeared in many prominent magazines, including Rolling Stone, Musician, Time and USA Today.

Carl received his Bachelor of Arts degree in Expressive Arts from Sonoma State University and his Masters degree in Spiritual Psychology from the University of Santa Monica, and is also a member of the esteemed Transformational Leadership Council, a group of leaders of personal and organizational transformation who support one another in their contributions to the world.

Click here to join a free video event with Carl Studna!

 

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How to Be Seen, Really Seen, in Front of a Camera

Feeling vulnerable, exposed, or uncomfortable in front of a camera is perfectly normal. While we might pose confidently, it isn’t uncommon to be wondering what others will see about us. Why are we so frightened?

Underneath our fear of being criticized, we are afraid of truly emanating from our cores—of sharing our brilliant and unique essence.

The problem is that we don’t know how to be seen.

WHAT ARE YOU HIDING?

The first thought that comes to my mind when considering this question is the well-known passage from Marianne Williamson entitled, “Our Deepest Fear.”’

“Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate.
 Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. It is our light, not our darkness, that most frightens us. We ask ourselves, Who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, handsome, talented and fabulous? Actually, who are you not to be?
 You are a child of God.
 Your playing small does not serve the world.
 There is nothing enlightened about shrinking 
so that other people won’t feel insecure around you. We are all meant to shine, as children do.
 We were born to make manifest the glory of God within us. It is not just in some; it is in everyone.
 And, as we let our own light shine, we consciously give other people permission to do the same.
 As we are liberated from our fear,
 our presence automatically liberates others.”

—Marianne Williamson

Here’s what I take from this: When we let our own unique light shine, we can begin to understand our own truth.

The act of expression gives others permission to release their own inhibitions. Whether I’m in a session with someone, or out in the world, I am constantly reminded of this.


WHAT DOES IT MEAN TO BE SEEN?

Whether we’re pointing it at a person, a landscape or a building, a camera can reveal the truth. So—isn’t it time that you allow the camera to be your friend? What if the camera’s deepest desire is for you to be fully seen as the magnificent, radiant, talented and perfect person that you really are?

Perhaps you’d begin to regard the camera as an opportunity to be seen. Whether it’s by an intimate partner, our boss or the checkout person at the supermarket, being seen can make an entire day brighter. We all wish to be authentically recognized for our uniqueness; we all wish to be loved, just the way that we are.

Imagine how fearless you’d feel if, in every moment and throughout every situation in your life, you knew without a shadow of a doubt that every person you met fully saw your unique gifts, saw your wholeness. The floodgates would open and you’d be unstoppable. There would be no limiting thoughts in your awareness because you’d know that everyone truly sees and supports your grandest expression!

When we are present in our true spirit, nothing can break it. And what better way to practice that than by doing so in front of a camera? Stare at the lens and imagine it’s  reflecting love, praise and devotion back to you. Imagine it’s the inside of your heart, winking at you. That may sound like a stretch, but it sure beats resisting the process every time. Take the exciting opportunity to be seen—really seen—in front of the camera.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR: CARL STUDNA



Author Photo Carl Studna How to Be Seen

Carl Studna is a world-renowned photographer and videographer, inspirational
speaker, teacher and multi-award-winning au
thor of the books CLICK! Choosing Love…One Frame at a Time and Evolution of Loving.

Over the past 30 years, Carl has been assigned all over the world to shoot CD and album covers, book covers, and other publicity platforms for musicians, teachers and authors such as Paul McCartney, George Harrison, James Brown, Jefferson Airplane, Eric Clapton, Elton John, Genesis, Kenny Loggins, His Holiness the Dalai Lama, Deepak Chopra, Tom Robbins, Ram Dass, Marianne Williamson and John Bradshaw, and his work has appeared in many prominent magazines, including Rolling Stone, Musician, Time and USA Today.

Carl received his Bachelor of Arts degree in Expressive Arts from Sonoma State University and his Masters degree in Spiritual Psychology from the University of Santa Monica, and is also a member of the esteemed Transformational Leadership Council, a group of leaders of personal and organizational transformation who support one another in their contributions to the world.

Click here to join a free video event with Carl Studna!

 

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The Trauma-Trigger Cycle

When you are stuck with old unprocessed experiences living inside you, they can create what I call a trauma-trigger cycle because they are still very much alive in our systems.

Here’s my analogy to help you understand how this works and why it causes so much trouble. Imagine that you have a very difficult experience, for example, having to say goodbye to a sick pet. All of the details in the form of individual feelings, smells, images, sounds, and more get bundled up and deposited into a metaphorical glass trauma capsule—which gets stored in the body. It sits there with all of the old feelings we experienced at the time the event happened. While you might not be aware of it constantly, you are likely feeling those emotions at a low level all the time. When any current situation reminds you of any of those details hanging out in the capsule—either consciously or subconsciously—the old trauma gets “poked,” or reactivated. This is how we get triggered. Being triggered can bring up flashes of those memories, including images, feelings, and any sensory stimuli.

For the most part, except in certain cases of post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) from major life events, where sometimes the trigger is known, this trauma-trigger reaction actually happens at a subconscious level, outside of your awareness. Even in obvious situations, you may think you know what the trigger is, and try to avoid it, but it may be something totally different that got stuck in the metaphorical glass trauma capsule. Often, people come to me and say, “Nothing set this off,” “I’m depressed for no reason,” or “I suddenly started feeling terrible but nothing happened.” While this may seem true, I can bet on the fact that while the bad feelings might seem random, they are being triggered in some way that you simply haven’t yet identified. Triggers can be foods, colors, smells,sounds, weather, or anything, really! Finding and resolving triggers can become almost an entertaining game if you let it.

As you can imagine, this entire trauma-trigger dynamic is very unsettling and unpredictable—which can feel like danger to your system and keep you stuck in that freakout response. Not only that, but in this state, you can actually be excessively tuned in to your trauma, seeing reminders of it everywhere, which further traumatizes you.

I had an experience after going through a loved one’s difficult health crisis where every single place I looked, I saw reminders of the experience. And for someone who wonders if everything is some greater “sign from the Universe” (fact: not every single thing is) or my intuition is trying to get my attention because another loved one might be in danger (second fact: trauma and fear clouds intuition), it felt like torture to me. I kept meeting people who had the same illness that my loved one had had, saw posters and billboards advertising medications for the condition, and more. As a distraction while on vacation, I had deliberately picked out several seemingly lighthearted books to take—and it turned out a character in every single book had that same medical condition! I was constantly on edge and further traumatized by all of these things. This is a perfect example of what happens to us in a traumatized state: we become highly attuned to the world around us, perhaps subconsciously scanning for danger, but in the process, we see and get triggered by everyday things we’ve probably passed by a million times before. I realized that had I been tuned in to any other single thing out in the world, like peaches, I likely would have seen that everywhere. This recognition actually led to a funny mantra I used during that time to keep things light while I did the deeper healing work: Look for the peaches! But in all seriousness, what happened as I worked to release the trauma, just like you’ll be doing in this chapter, was that I stopped seeing reminders of it. I have to be honest in that this took months of using energy therapy in different ways to overcome the trauma I had experienced, like you’ll be learning soon—but it worked. Did all the people with this condition go away? Did all the billboards get taken down? No. The less traumatized I became, the less heightened my sensitivity to it was. This is a perfect example of why it’s essential to work with unprocessed experiences.

Emotional memory is stored throughout the entire body. Thanks to the work of Candace Pert, we know that “unexpressed emotions from experiences can get stuck in the body at the level of cellular memory.” This is such a simple explanation for why we feel bad when we haven’t resolved our past experiences. We are still quite literally feeling them. And even if it’s at a subtle level, it may only take a “trigger” from that metaphorical glass capsule to awaken it.

While your own unprocessed experiences may not disrupt your life in the way that clinically diagnosed PTSD does, you may relate to what it feels like to have PTSD, when one or a few memories from life takes over all of it. This is, again, why we must deal effectively and consistently with our emotions instead of suppressing them. Otherwise, we are at risk of our emotions becoming part of future unresolved experiences.

Even knowing all of this, there’s no need to panic. Again, not all experiences traumatize you. And, not all traumas will need to be dealt with in order to get you feeling better. But the ones that do need careful attention. I want you to understand that by working with trauma, we are not trying to force a positive perspective on it or make you be okay with something bad that happened to you. Not at all. What we want to do is release the stress it’s causing you, even if that stress is undetected consciously. We don’t want these traumas taking up space and energy in your body anymore or triggering you without your knowledge.

Working with unprocessed experiences will help empty the metaphorical glass trauma capsule so we stop becoming triggered by the world around us. In other words, you’ll be seeing peaches more easily instead of trauma triggers.

This is an excerpt from How to Heal Yourself From Depression When No One Else Can: A Self-Guided Program to Stop Feeling Like Sh*t by Amy B. Scher.

 

amy b scherAmy B. Scher is an energy therapist, expert in mind-body healing, and the bestselling author of How to Heal Yourself When No One Else Can and How to Heal Yourself from Anxiety When No One Else Can. She has been featured in the Times of India, CNN, HuffPost, CBS, the Washington Post, Cosmopolitan, the Los Angeles Review of Books, Curve magazine, and San Francisco Book Review. Scher was also named one of the Advocate’s “40 Under 40.” She lives in New York City. For more, visit amybscher.com.

 

 

how to heal

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The Importance of Being Vulnerable

Emotions are the primary way we connect with others. In fact, for all the ways we perceive that sharing our emotions causes trouble, it’s actually worse for us not to. Sharing our truest, most vulnerable selves actually prevents us from the isolation that occurs when we miss out on the deep connection that only comes from this type of transparency. While social media can be a place of great support, it’s also caused a huge challenge. Because we’ve created a world in which we are addicted to showing our curated emotions, social media posts rarely tell the entire story. We’ve gotten accustomed to holding back our real selves—so much, in fact, that we have a totally distorted view of what’s “real.”

On a wet fall day as I was researching the negative effects of social media for this book, I noticed that a heavy sense of melancholy had fallen over me. Pushing myself to go out for a short walk in my beloved Central Park, only a block away, took every ounce of energy I had. When I was out, my sadness didn’t fade, but astounded by the colorful change of leaves, I felt inspired to take a handful of photos. They were the kind that Instagram is made of. When I got home, I decided to post them on social media. But earlier that day I had read something that was still with me: what happened when Tracy Clayton, host of the BuzzFeed podcast Another Round, asked people to repost photos they’d previously shared on social media, but this time, with the “real story” behind them. The photos that most of us would have longed for had painful stories behind them. One woman admitted to a terrible anxiety attack that took her all day to overcome, someone else shared the grief over a loss of a loved one stuffed under their smile at a party, and so on. What this shows us is that we are all running after a farce. But what’s worse, it shows that we’re all co-creating it.

So after a brief pause, I posted my gorgeous fall photos from the park with this: Full disclosure: Inspired by research for my next book about how social media posts screw us up by making everything and everyone seem OK even when they are not, I’m adding the truth here. These pictures were taken on a walk I dragged myself on because I felt sad today for no particular reason (except for that life is a lot sometimes).

I am typically not a sad person, nor am I one who shares it on social media when I am. I am very transparent on my author account, but for some reason, I am less so on my personal page. The response that day when I shared how I really felt took me by great surprise. Dozens of people I rarely heard from came out of the blue with comments, texts, and private messages. And what most of them were saying was, “I feel that way too.” In our technological age, we are more connected than ever before, but also lonelier and more isolated than ever before. I wondered that day, What if everyone stopped staying so busy pretending everything was perfect? What if instead of hiding our vulnerabilities to prevent the isolation we fear, we are driving it?

The bottom line is that, over and over again, I’ve learned that emotions are better in every way when they aren’t kept inside and to myself. 

This is an excerpt from How to Heal Yourself From Depression When No One Else Can: A Self-Guided Program to Stop Feeling Like Sh*t by Amy B. Scher.

 

amy scherAmy B. Scher is an energy therapist, expert in mind-body healing, and the bestselling author of How to Heal Yourself When No One Else Can and How to Heal Yourself from Anxiety When No One Else Can. She has been featured in the Times of India, CNN, HuffPost, CBS, the Washington Post, Cosmopolitan, the Los Angeles Review of Books, Curve magazine, and San Francisco Book Review. Scher was also named one of the Advocate’s “40 Under 40.” She lives in New York City. For more, visit amybscher.com.

 

 

Learn More

Sounds True | Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Indiebound | Bookshop

Vegan Salted Caramel

Vegan Salted Caramel

From the book, Whole Girl by Sadie Radinsky

Yield: Serves 10

 

INGREDIENTS:

  • ½ cup coconut sugar
  • ¾ cup full-fat coconut milk 2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 tsp coconut oil
  • ¼ tsp sea salt
  • 2 – 5 apples, sliced, for dipping

 

INSTRUCTIONS:

  1. Whisk together the coconut sugar and coconut milk in a medium saucepan and bring to a boil over medium-high heat.
  2. Once the mixture has started boiling, turn down the heat to medium-low and let the caramel simmer for 20 to 25 minutes, whisking every couple minutes. If it starts to smell very strong, remove from heat; it could be burning. When the caramel appears to have thickened considerably and darkened in color, remove from heat.
  3. Slowly whisk in the vanilla extract, coconut oil, and sea salt. Let the caramel cool for at least 10 minutes, to thicken up more. Pour the caramel into a small jar. I recommend serving it with sliced apples for a healthy snack. Store any leftover caramel in a sealed jar in the refrigerator for up to 2 weeks.

salted caramel

sadie radinsky

Sadie Radinsky is a 19-year-old blogger and recipe creator. For over six years, she has touched the lives of girls and women worldwide with her award-winning website, wholegirl.com, where she shares paleo treat recipes and advice for living an empowered life. She has published articles and recipes in national magazines and other platforms, including Paleo, Shape, Justine, mindbodygreen, and The Primal Kitchen Cookbook. She lives in the mountains of Los Angeles. For more, visit wholegirl.com.

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