What is shifting on TikTok? The meaning behind the desired reality trend

8 October 2020, 12:33

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Jazmin Duribe

By Jazmin Duribe

Here's the meaning behind the viral shifting trend on TikTok.

Everyday it seems like there's a new trend on TikTok. Whether it's the term Heather or the whole Gen-Z tattoo mess, it's sometimes hard to keep up with what's going on. But today let's talk about shifting. It's the latest trend on the platform and the hashtag #shifting has almost 300 million views. But what does it even mean and how to you do it? Here's all we know…

What is shifting on TikTok?

Apparently, shifting (sometimes called reality shifting) is just a way of training your mind to enter a new reality. It's nothing new, though, the whole thing actually started on Reddit a while ago but it's been picked up on TikTok recently thanks to the internet's obsession with Draco Malfoy.

As you know, TikTok have basically reclaimed Harry Potter, so shifting allows members of the fandom to transport themselves to Hogwarts, Hagrid's Hut or… Draco's bedroom. Yep, people are actually transporting themselves to realities where Draco is their boyfriend.

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There are so many methods to try if you would like to become a shifter but the two most popular seem to be the raven and Alice in Wonderland methods. For the raven method, you'll need to lie down in the starfish position when you're half asleep and count down from 100. You then have to imagine your desired reality, or if you have a prewritten script about how you want your shifted reality experience to pan out prepared, recite it.

Meanwhile, if you fancy trying the Alice in Wonderland method, the shifter needs to visualise themselves running after a person from their desired reality (for example, Draco) and jumping down a rabbit hole with them. The results are said to feel like an extremely realistic and vivid dream.

So far, it all kind of sounds like a mixture between meditation, manifestation and lucid dreaming (when the dreamer is aware that they're dreaming). But scientifically speaking, is it actually a thing? Well in an interview with VICE UK Grace Warwick, a therapist with expertise in anomalous experiences, confirmed that shifting is a "transliminal experience".

"Transliminal experiences occur when awake and are most common when the mind is in a soothed state – for example, upon waking and before falling asleep," she explained. "The 'instructions' [for shifting] that abound on social media include being half asleep as a start point. They then introduce repetitive music [or] counting backwards slowly. All these factors would induce a state conducive to a transliminal experience. An interesting aspect of the techniques is the central part that a prepared 'script' plays – I would liken the role of the script to creating a guided meditation or working with active imagination."

So, there you have it. Shifting is real. Time to transport myself to the my desired reality – the bank.

QUIZ: Which Harry Potter character would be your boyfriend?