Conscious Relationships

Interest Area: Conscious Relationships

Focusing Friendships

Think about who you turn to when you are really down, when you need a helping a hand, a listening ear. This person is probably a natural “empathic listener,” and someone who might be interested in learning more so that the two of you (or more) can become even better supporters of each other.
By yourself or with your friend(s) for company,  read about the Core Skills, Focused Listening and Intuitive Focusing on this website, and try out some of the Instant “Ahah!”s in the sidebar of the homepage.

Then, if you want to try building your own listening/focusing support group, buy the Self-Help Package with the  Focusing In Community: How To Start A Listening/Focusing Support Group manual, and read through the first four chapters.  

Watch the DVD Listening/Focusing Demonstration sessions. This will give you a good sense of the core skills needed for Focusing Partnerships and starting a Focusing Group. If you want some additional training before trying to introduce the skills to a friend or two, then go to our Free Resources section for books, tapes, phone sessions or workshops and classes in your area.

But, otherwise, just choose a friend who is a good listener and show her the book, talk about the idea a little and what draws you to it, then, just ask your friend if she is willing to try it out. Start out by seeing if she will be the Focuser and, if so, ask her to close her eyes and be comfortable while you read the Instant “Ahah!” Focusing: Find Out What’s Bothering You instructions to her, pausing one full minute between instructions. Then, after she has spent this quiet time inside, offer to do Focused Listening with her on whatever came up during her Focusing turn.

And, if she has gone this far and is intrigued and willing, ask her if she will reverse the process for you – first, reading you the Focusing instructions, pausing one minute between instructions, then try giving you Focused Listening responses while you try to spend time with and make words for whatever came up in your Focusing turn.

And there you have it – the beginning of a Listening/Focusing Partnership. Bring in another friend or two in the same way, and you will have the beginnings of a Changes Listening/Focusing Support Group, a supportive community.

Once you have gotten them interested, you and your friends can pursue further training together using the Resources available, including classes or workshops and phone or email supervision on your experience.


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These materials are offered purely as self-help skills. In providing them, Dr. McGuire is not engaged in rendering psychological, financial, legal, or other professional services. If expert assistance or counseling is needed, the services of a competent professional should be sought.