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A Powerful Tool for Inner Awareness and Healing

Developed by philosopher and psychotherapist Eugene Gendlin, Focusing is a mind-body practice that helps individuals cultivate a deeper connection with their inner experiences, emotions, and bodily felt senses. This transformative technique has been embraced by therapists, counselors, and individuals seeking personal growth and self-understanding.

What is Focusing?

Focusing is a gentle yet profound process of turning inward and tuning into the subtleties of one's bodily sensations, emotions, and intuitive knowledge. It involves creating a welcoming, non-judgmental space to acknowledge and explore the "felt sense" – the vague, holistic feeling that often accompanies our experiences but may be difficult to articulate.

Through the Focusing process, individuals learn to:

  1. Cultivate a friendly, compassionate inner relationship with themselves.
  2. Identify and articulate their felt senses and bodily resonances.
  3. Engage in an empathic dialogue with these inner experiences.
  4. Uncover deeper layers of meaning, insight, and potential for positive change.

The Benefits of Focusing:

  1. Increased self-awareness and emotional intelligence.
  2. Relief from emotional and physical tensions.
  3. Clarity and insight into personal challenges and life decisions.
  4. Enhanced capacity for self-acceptance and self-compassion.
  5. A deeper sense of inner freedom, wholeness, and authenticity.

Focusing can be practiced as a standalone process or integrated into various therapeutic modalities. It is a gentle yet powerful tool for personal exploration, emotional healing, and unlocking one's innate wisdom and resources for positive transformation.

By fostering a compassionate inner relationship and honoring the wisdom of the body, Focusing empowers individuals to navigate life's challenges with greater resilience, self-trust, and a profound sense of embodied presence.

“The greater the role played by experiencing during the thera- py hours, the greater will be the therapeutic change and [the more likely] the successful outcome of therapy” (1961, pp. 240-243). To test this hypothesis, Gendlin and his colleagues developed and tested the experiencing scale, which measures the level of experiencing in a segment of therapy. More than 30 studies now show that a higher experiencing level correlates with more successful therapy (Hendricks, 2002)."

Please see this article for more information on Focsuing in psychotherapy:

“Emotions are loudspeakers. They amplify the strength of signals reaching us from outside or inside our bodies. They exclaim: Pay attention! The stronger your emotions become, the harder they are to ignore. And that is as it should be, because bad things happen when you fail to attend to your emotional messages.” (Potter-Efron)

A sample of going deeper:

"FOCUSER [1]: “She needs this and she needs that and no matter what I do for her it isn’t enough. All her family are like that. It makes me angry. Her father was like that, too, when he was sick, which went on for years. They’re always negative and grumpy and down on each other.”LISTENER [1]: “It makes you angry the way she is, the way they are.”FOCUSER [2]: “Yes. I’m angry. Damn right. It’s a poor climate. Living in a poor climate. Always gray. Always down on something. The other day, when I—”LISTENER [2] (interrupts): “Wait. Be a minute with your angry feeling. Just feel it for a minute. See what more is in it. Don’t think anything. . . .” (Gendlin, 1981, p. 124)

Listening; A poem

When someone deeply listens to youit is like holding out a dented cupyou've had since childhoodand watching it fill up withcold, fresh water.When it balances on top of the brim,you are understood.When it overflows and touches your skin,you are loved.

When someone deeply listens to youthe room where you staystarts a new lifeand the place where you wroteyour first poembegins to glow in your mind's eye.It is as if gold has been discovered!

When someone deeply listens to youyour bare feet are on the earthand a beloved land that seemed distantis now at home within you.

~ by John Fox