Sentence completion was developed by a psychotherapist named Nathaniel Branden. It is based on the premise that we know more then we think we know. Sentence-completion can let us tap into our “hidden” resources we didn’t even know we had. The act of noticing our responses within sentence completion exercises can lead to healing and personal growth.
When you listen to yourself and act on what you know, you build your self-esteem.
Sentence completion is used to (1) uncover unconscious material (self-awareness), (2) as a means to accepting and integrating this material (self-acceptance) and, (3) as a method to generate action plans (self-responsibility).
What is the Process?
You will be given a variety of sentence stems (sentence beginnings), that you finish in a spontaneous and grammatically correct manner. Do not place expectations on your answers, don’t worry if the statement is true. You want to finish the sentences quickly, almost without thought.
Try to create at least six endings for each sentence stem, but no more then ten. Make sure you say or read the stem every time.
Say or read the sentence stem, write down your ending, say the same sentence stem, write down another ending…etc. Keep doing this until you have at least six endings.
I have created the following sentence stems myself, basing them on ones that Nathaniel Branden uses, but gearing them towards birth preparation.
The Sentence Stems
- If I bring 5% more awareness to my body today –
- If I were to fully accept my body right now –
- If I were to fully trust my body –
- Sometimes, when I feel pain I –
- Sometimes, when I feel pleasure I –
- Giving birth to me means –
- Sometimes, when I think about birth, I –
- One thing that scares me about birth is –
- If I deny or disown my fears about birth –
- If I am more accepting of my fears about birth –
- An effective way to handle my fear might be to –
- One thing that excites me about birth is –
- If I deny or disown my excitement about birth –
- If I am more accepting of my excitement about birth –
- If I were to deny or disown my pain during labor –
- If I were to accept my pain during labor –
- If I were willing to experience birth as pleasurable –
- Self-assertiveness to me means –
- Sometimes, when I assert myself –
- Sometimes, when I don’t assert myself –
- If I lived 5% more assertive today –
- If I were more accepting of my need to assert myself –
- For a good birth I need –
- If I am not clear about what I need –
- As I learn to fully accept my needs –
- When I think about voicing my needs to others –
- Sometimes, when I speak my mind –
Thoughts and Feelings
- If I treat my thoughts and feelings with respect today –
- As I grow more comfortable with my full range of emotions –
- If I bring more awareness to all parts of me –
- If I learn to accept all of who I am –
- If I were willing to breathe deeply and experience my feelings fully –
- Relaxation to me feels like –
- If I were to take more time to relax –
- If I ignore my need to relax –
- Sometimes, when I want to relax –
- Holding tension in my body feels like –
- When I constrict my muscles –
- If I were to bring 5% more relaxation into my life –
- Trust to me means –
- If I were to bring 5% more trust in to my life –
- If I were to fully trust my body to give birth –
- If I were to distrust my body to give birth –
- As I learn to fully trust my body and it’s ability to birth –
There you have it 🙂 I hope that these sentence stems help you connect with your deep inner knowing. It is my wish for you to have an empowered, happy birth.
Thanks for reading.