Focusing facilitates a more intimate, friendly, and alive contact with oneself and others.
When facing issues in which one feels unclear and stuck – perhaps caught in repetitive mental or emotional loops – in a tremendously gentle way, Focusing brings about a broader perspective from which unexpected and surprising insights emerge.
However, it is often practiced without any specific theme, simply to curiously be with oneself (and another) and the ongoing unpredictable process that life is.
The actual Focusing process begins after the Focuser has told the Companion what they want from them, and how they would like to be listened to. After a moment to become fully present, the Focuser comes in contact with a felt sense of whatever he or she feels drawn to stay with. A felt sense includes physical sensations, images, thoughts, emotions, qualities and atmospheres, memories, and inner voices, that arise naturally and spontaneously as the Focuser silently ‘listens’ into the ‘body’.
From time to time, the Focuser expresses what comes to his or her attention, which is then reflected by the Companion. Both the Companion and the Focuser allow plenty of time, space, and silence. From an initially fuzzy sense of a situation, the felt sense slowly comes into focus. What is familiar arises quickly, and what is yet unknown is subtler and makes its way more slowly into the Focuser’s awareness.
When a shift happens, something like a deep breath, a relief, a sense of lightness, a hidden knowing or understanding becomes available, energetically and to the conscious mind.
Join my Focusing course. It enables you to have Focusing Partnerships:
Book an (online) Focusing session, no prior experience is needed
No experience with Zoom? Instructions are at the bottom of this page.
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Focusing can be done with a Focusing Professional, but also with friends, in groups, as well as alone.
In the beginning, it is very helpful to be guided by a Focusing Professional who has many years of experience with the process. To learn Focusing for oneself, books explain Focusing in detail, workshops are offered all over the world, locally as well as online, there are free Focusing groups (Changes Groups) in many major cities, and Focusing.org offers the possibility to find a regular Focusing Partner anywhere in the world.
Finally, it becomes second nature to attend to oneself, others, and all the varied daily happenings with the Focusing attitude.
Within the framework of client-centered psychotherapy, Focusing has been developed since the 1960s by Eugene T. Gendlin, professor of philosophy and psychology at the University of Chicago.
Under the supervision of Carl Rogers, Gene Gendlin initiated an extensive research study to find out why therapy was life-changing for some people but not for others. He discovered that the missing piece for those who remained stuck was the lacking capacity to get in touch with their inner felt sense. As a consequence of his findings, he committed the rest of his life to developing Focusing through which contacting the felt sense is learned.
Focusing can be used as a sole ‘technique’ but is often combined with other self-exploring practices.
3 Minute-Video about Focusing:
The Liking Exercise
The total time frame of a Focusing session is typically one hour, sometimes 1.5 hours. In a 1-hour session, the actual Focusing process takes about 40 to 50 min. This leaves 10 to 20 minutes to arrive, possibly clarifying the content of your session, and for us to take time for any questions, curiosities, or insights you may want to share.
Using Zoom, the meeting is almost as if we were sitting in the same room. The session takes place seated, facing the camera and microphone, and proceeds just as it would if we were sharing the same space.
You need a Mac or PC, or a cell phone. You’ll the zoom link which I email you once we have scheduled a meeting, and then just follow the prompts. When using a cell phone, you need to download the Zoom App before our meeting.
It is best to have a headset at hand, as the built-in microphone may not be strong enough to allow for a relaxed, quiet conversation.
Also, please ensure that you create a comfortable, undisturbed environment for yourself, so you are not interrupted in your inner listening. Optimally, plan some alone time after the session, as you may encounter vulnerable spaces that want your undivided attention.