Posts in Mental Health
Why Self Care Isn't About Feeling Good All The Time - by Chelsey Luren

Self care doesn’t always mean bubble baths or walks on the beach. Self care is doing the things you don’t necessarily want to do, because they’re actually good for you.

How do I know that this is the truth?

For 9 months of 2014-2015 I carried a big secret…

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How to Feel Confident Without Going on a Diet - by Chelsey Luren

Confidence, self love, and body positivity are incredible tools.

Telling women they are good enough, worthy of what they desire, and that they are allowed to love themselves as they are is 100% fact. I am a huge advocate of this, and stand firmly behind this message.

The entire movement of body positivity is one that was invaluable to me when I was first beginning my recovery from anorexia over 8 years ago.

But here’s the thing that’s not really being talked about in it…

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Today I Rise | Vancouver Life Coach + Body Image Coach + Boudoir Photographer

Through body image coaching and boudoir photography, I help women heal body image issues, and their relationship with themselves so that they can live a life they dream of and feel worthy of it all.

Before deciding to move in that direction, and being able to have the capacity of holding space + help others, there was a lot of healing to take place within myself. 

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The Free Tigress Tribe is For Women Who... | Vancouver Boudoir Photographer Body Image Coach

Did you know that for the past 2 years I have had a private Facebook community for women to come together to celebrate their self love journeys, body positivity, and their own personal growth?

The Tigress Tribe is for women who:

✓ Are not satisfied with the status quo in their level of personal development, self love journey, and relationship with themselves.

✓ Want to have a better, more healthy, more loving relationship with themselves and their bodies.

✓ Are willing to lean into their fears in order to heal their body image + their self relationship.

✓ Want more than the cards they have been dealt and they are ready to create their reality regardless of where they now stand.

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Why Healing the Relationship With Ourselves is a Privilege | Vancouver Boudoir Photographer + Body Image Coach

Healing our body image issues and the relationship we have with ourselves is not work, but a privilege.

This realm of personal development - where we heal the relationship with ourselves, mend our body image woes and shift from low self esteem into radiant confidence - there are a lot of time, effort, energy, and resources are involved.  

To dive in and shift our lives takes a willingness to be uncomfortable, to face truths we may have ignored, to stand in places of our shame in order to heal.

More often than not, this is…

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Why I Became a Boudoir Photographer and Body Image Coach | Vancouver, Canada

For so long I have shied away from sharing the truth of my soul and the path I have walked. I have muted the calling to be more, do more, give more to the world. I have tried to hide away, to disown, to ignore, and deny parts of myself. 

I love the work I do as a boudoir photographer and body image coach - it sets my soul ablaze.

But the fear in being seen while in my truth is one that runs deep. “What will people say? What if they hate me? What if I offend someone? What if nobody gets it and I’m alone in this world?” The thoughts sting and make me want to retreat into myself and hide away from the light.

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Here's the real love you need in your life | Vancouver Boudoir Photographer + Body Image Coach

Ahh, February 14th.

The day of the year that people shift their focus to love. 

...Queue eye roll.

Now don’t get me wrong, I love love.

The butterflies in your stomach. The rose coloured glasses. The way time slips away when you're spending time with that special someone. The sighs and fluttering eyes.

All those feel good feelings that circulate, keep you awake at night, and get the blood pumping are amazing.

But the fact of the matter is this:

We can only love another to the extent that we love ourselves first.

In order to really love another person, we need to love ourselves first.

How can that be?

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Eating Disorder Recovery Session | Carissa's Testimonial

Eating disorders have the highest mortality rate of ANY mental illness. In order to help those who are struggling to seek help, we need to lift the stigma that surrounds them.

For myself, it took me years into my own recovery from anorexia to really open up to those around me about my journey. I've made it my mission to help lower the stigma surrounding eating disorders and shift into celebration of the recovery journey instead. Also knowing how much courage it takes to open up about the struggles that go hand in hand with eating disorders and body image issues, I am so moved by Carissa.

Carissa Shaul is a disordered eating coach and yoga instructor who took the time to roadtrip from Olympia, Washington, all the way up here to us in Vancouver, Canada. Her courage, strength and transformation throughout her recovery experience and straight on into her boudoir photoshoot was such a honour to witness and to share with all of you now in this interview!

Can you tell us a bit about your eating disorder (E.D.) history?

"Eating disorders are unique in that they aren’t like a physical ailment where there is an exact onset date. My journey with food and body issues began in 2009 when I...

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Eating Disorder Recovery Photoshoot | Nicole Testimonial

To anybody that has been following my work for any length of time (and to let those who haven't know), my greatest passion lies in working with women who are healing their relationship to their bodies. Those who have recovered from an eating disorder, have struggled with body image issues, or are shifting their relationship to food hold a special place in my heart.

As someone who spent close to a decade in the throws of an eating disorder before choosing recovery, I have so much empathy for these incredibly beautiful women. 

There is such an intense degree of strength, effort, commitment and a thousand other characteristics needed on the path to healthy self image. Being able to reflect that same strength and beauty back to my Recovery Session clients within their photoshoots here at Chelsey Luren Portraits is overwhelming.

My heart nearly bursts when I reflect on all of the women I have had the opportunity to work with.

This next warrior I am excited to feature is such a gem. 

I am so ecstatic to introduce Nicole Calla to all of you. Now add on being able to include her words about her own Recovery Session, and some of the images we created together... there are simply no words to describe it.

So without further ado, here is the Chelsey Luren Portraits interview with Nicole about her glamour session with us...

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5 Ways to Love Your Body More

Those who know me and have worked with me, know firsthand how much of an advocate for body positivity and self love I am.

Being someone who grew up with a very distorted view of my body and has worked HARD to shift this, I now see how important self love, and body positivity are. Body love and confidence applies to not only the work I do as a boudoir photographer, but it's also an integral aspect of everyday life. If you don't feel good about yourself or your body, how many areas of your life are in turn impacted? (Answer: Every. Single. Aspect.)

There are so many things that can bring us down, leaving us feeling less than stellar about ourselves, and in turn our bodies.

I remember so many different times that I was unduly harsh towards myself. To be honest, this is still something that comes up for me on occasion. But over the years I have come leaps and bounds. I am so proud of that progress, and it's for that reason that I want to share with you all these tips. 

Here are my personal tips on 5 ways to love your body more!

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Give Yourself Permission to Feel Good

"If it's important, you'll find a way. If it isn't, you find an excuse."

I've found from speaking with so many women - from growing up in a household full of women, from working with them daily, and from being one myself - that more often than not, women feel the need to have an excuse to feel good. Justifications and reasons for doing something...

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Project You: Fearless

Recently I had the opportunity to photograph the first full day event from Project You (Thank you Meagan Ayres and the whole Project You team for creating such pure magic!). The focal point of the day was fear and what living a fearless life meant to each of us.

Living a fearless life doesn't mean I don't have fear. Living fearlessly means that...

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How to Navigate Building Confidence | Ruby Roxx Guest Blogger

My name is Ruby Roxx.  I am a plus size model, body positive activist, writer and blogger.  I often am asked “how are you so confident” and the answer is…years of hard work.  Body confidence is not something that comes over night.  It takes a lot of hard work, and It means something different to everyone.  For me...

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How to Realize Your Own Self Worth and Value

“It’s not your job to like me - it’s mine." — Byron Katie

I came across this quote from Byron Katie and it felt so fitting for the entire message I always try to put forward not only as an entrepreneur, but as a woman in this world. 

The honesty of this statement is overwhelming. It can be so easy to put the burden of our self value in the hands...

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Recovery Session Client Testimonial - Sarah

As a women who had eating disorders as a part of my life for over a decade, the Recovery Sessions that I offer are the work that I am most passionate about. Being able to give back and help the women who are where I once stood through my work, is a true privilege and honour.

I am honoured to being to sharing my interview with Sarah with all of you today...

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If You Struggle With Body Image, This is For You

I've been giving a lot of thought to the message I want to put out there to all of my readers on the Chelsey Luren Portraits blog.

"What would my readers like to hear? What do they really care about? What can I give to them?"

It then occurred to me that I had not even properly defined who it was that I wanted to connect with through my blog or through...

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Samantha Skelly Testimonial | Eating Disorder Recovery Photoshoot Review

Samantha Skelly is the owner and founder of Hungry for Happiness, a business that specifically helps women recovering from eating disorders and body image issues. Through her coaching, she is able to help women heal their relationship to food and their bodies. 

The work that she does never ceases to amaze me and I am so honoured to...

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