The Self Portrait is an exercise that can help open up dialogue about who people are. It can be a useful way of engaging with staff, residents and visitors.
For 20 minutes create your own self portrait based on the ten points listed here. Share only that which you wish to share.
The 10 points of the portrait
- A significant date. e.g. birth, marriage, first house, job, divorce, celebration, event.
- A place of importance. e.g. birth place, present home, holiday place, place of peace.
- A learning experience. e.g. at school, college or training event or an event that had crucial and significant effect upon how you saw/see the world i.e. a critical experience as well as a possible structured event.
- A heroine/hero living or dead – historical, fact or fiction. A role model, or source of inspiration.
- Two significant people – to whom I am now close, who are important to me.
- An example of unresolved conflict – a personal issue in present experience, as yet unresolved, at home or at work .
- A present job focus/concern – not a full job description, but a specific part of present work, which is a source of opportunity, difficulty or particular interest.
- Symbol or picture – some visual representation of myself: character, interest, present commitment.
- Bits of personal history – up to six selected items of personal history that represent your life to date e.g. birthplace, school, children, significant people, jobs, travel etc.
- An example of good support network – some place where I felt or feel understood and supported.
Resource to download
Taken from ‘Introducing Ourselves – a self portrait’ McGill and Brockbank The Action Learning Handbook (2004)