Category: experiential focusing therapy

MIND/BODY HEALING: FOCUSING-ORIENTED BODY WORK

By , May 25, 2009 9:26 pm

Gendlin’s Focusing (Bantam, 1981, 2007; www.focusing.org ), and McGuire’s Intuitive Focusing, are premiere techniques for mind/body healing. Focusing happens exactly at the edge between conscious and unconscious, the “preconscious” that is immediately available as a “bodily felt sense.” McGuire’s calls it  “intuitive feel,” the “something-more-than-words,”  The Creative Edge, the source of creativity, innovation, and problem solving.

Michael Mayer has years of experience working at the interface between mind and body, and between conscious/unconscious/preconscious. He has worked extensively combining body-centered practices like Tai Chi and Qigong with Focusing-Oriented Psychotherapy. Below he reviews his past work and announces his new book, Energy Psychology: Self Healing methods For Bodymind Health, which integrates energy therapies, meridian tapping methods like Emotional Freedom Techniques (www.emofree.com)  as well as Qigong and many others, with Focusing for mind/body self-healing. Quoted from Dr. Mayer on The Focusing Discussion e-list at www.focusing.org (subscribe in Category “Felt Community”, then e-lists): 

I was the Focusing training coordinator for the San Francisco East Bay area from around 1978 to 1988, and Focusing has been close to my heart and an important part of my professional  life for many years.

Over the years I have integrated Focusing with many other traditions: In the 1980’s I  combined Focusing with psychomythology with my “Mythic Journey Process” (Mayer, Focusing Folio 1982);  in the 1990’s I integrated Focusing with  Qigong and Chronic Pain (Mayer, “Qigong and Behavioral Medicine, An Integrated approach to Chronic Pain,” Qi Journal, 1986). Then I brought Focusing together with many facets of Qigong and other traditions of postural initiation (Mayer, Bodymind Healing Psychotherapy, 2007). Now with my latest book I’m hoping to show the importance of Focusing to bring out the inner energetic dimensions of Energy Psychology.
I wanted to let the Focusing community know that I have a new book , Energy Psychology: Self Healing Methods for Bodymind Health (North Atlantic/Random House, 2009) that will be released tomorrow April 28th. Here’s an excerpt:
“In order to bring the healing abilities of a comprehensive energy psychology to the public, I believe that in addition to the well-known energy psychology methods such as EFT, the field of energy psychology (EP) would be well served by expanding its terrain to include Qigong and methods of energy cultivation from other traditions of meditation and postural initiation (Goodman, 1990), depth psychology, Gendlin’s Focusing, symbolic process traditions, Kabalistic methods, etc…

…The internal process of psychological change, as Gendlin (1978) rightly pointed out, has energy activation  (Qigong) as an inextricable part of it, as a patient’s energetic “felt shift” emerges along with a patient’s discovering new meaning. //bolding by Dr. McGuire//

Also symbolic process methods, such as my Mythic Journey Process (Mayer, 1994) and River of Life Process (Mayer 2007, 2009), create an internal energy (Jung, Vol. VIII) that helps a person find a meaningful life path, and helps patients to find a new life stance (Goodman, 1990, Mayer, 2004). As related to EP, this expands the field to include both internal and external methods of energetic change. ..My newest book, Energy Psychology: Self-Healing Practices for Bodymind Health is written to help accomplish these aims (Mayer, 2009)….”

If you are interested in getting a copy of Energy Psychology, on April 28th,  tomorrow, the book will be  available on Amazon.com(direct link to Mayer’s book), and all major books stores, or you can order Energy Psychology or any of my other books from my website www.bodymindhealing.com.
I’ll look forward to hearing more about what other Focusers are up to nowadays from this list, and feel free to email me [email protected].
Warm regards,
Michael Mayer

Claudia Conza also announces the Second International “Focusing in the body-oriented professions” residential workshop, Sept. 22-26, 2009, Maennedorf, Switzerland (also from the Focusing Discussion e-list):

 
Dear all, Guten Tag
 
Finally I am happy to announce our 2. International residential workshop “Meeting at the Edge”2009 in Switzerland
After the big success in Ischia, Italy in 2007 we are ready to introduce the next location for:
 
“MEETING AT THE EDGE”
Focusing in the body-oriented professions
A 4 day residential workshop
September 22 – 26, 2009
Boldern, conference center, Maennedorf, (Zurich) Switzerland.
 
The event will be in English with translation in to German and Italian. Please check our webpage: www.mae2009.org where with time we will ad more and more information, photos and answers to the FAQ.
Attached to print I am sending our flyer in pdf format to print our flyer.
 
I am looking forward to meeting you in September 2009 here in Switzerland to share and explore on our topic and to show you the lovely site with the view down to the lake of Zurich and our mountains.
 
Claudia
In the name of the organising board, Francesca, Nicoletta, Mathias, Larry, Steve, Jack

CREATIVE EDGE FOCUSING(tm):  SELF-HELP SKILLS FOR HOME AND WORK

Free Downloads:

Complete Focusing Instructions Manual (17 pages)

“Ajas” Instantaneos Mini-Manual

Creative Edge Focusing (www.cefocusing.com ) teaches two basic self-help skills, Intuitive Focusing and Focused Listening, which can be applied at home and at work through The Creative Edge Focusing Pyramid.

Based upon Gendlin’s Experiential Focusing (www.focusing.org ) and Rogers’ Empathic Listening, our website is packed with Free Resources and instructions in these basic self-help skills. Learn how to build Support Groups, Conscious Relationships, and Creative Edge Organizations based upon these basic skills of emotional intelligence.

You can try out    “Focusing: Find Out What Is Bothering You.”

Click here to subscribe to Creative Edge Focusing(TM)’s  Instant “Ahah!” e-newsletter and get the latest exercises first!!! 

Click here for a free Intuitive Focusing Mini-Course

Click here for a free Focused Listening Mini-Course

 See  Core Concept: Conflict Resolution to find a complete mini-course on Interpersonal Focusing and Conflict Resolution, including Rosenberg’s Non-Violent Communication, Blanchard’s “One Minute Apology,” Patricia Evan’s books on Verbally Abuse and Controlling Relationships, McMahon’s Beyond The Myth Of Dominance, and much more.

See  Core Concept: Intimate Relationship to find a complete mini-course on increasing intimacy and sexuality, including the “Sharing Your Day” exercise, Listening/Focusing Partnerships for The Way of Relationship, untangling and equalizing desire, tantric sexuality, and much more.

Download complete Instant “Ahah!” Mini-Manual, in English and Spanish, from CEF Website, or download from links at top of this blog.

Find links to free articles, personality tests, multi-media Self-Help training, Classes and workshops

Dr. Kathy McGuire, Director

Creative Edge Focusing (TM)

www.cefocusing.com

INTUITIVE FOCUSING: THE ONE MINUTE PAUSE — REFLECTING, NOT REACTING

By , April 10, 2009 5:02 pm
Self-Reflection

Self-Reflection

We like to think of ourselves as free. But, most of the time, we are actually simply reacting to the stimuli around us. Something happens, and we REACT. We do not usually STOP, even for a moment, to REFLECT upon what is happening. We are not “free” but quite controlled by the situations around us. And, most importantly, we are also controlled by the residue left by our past experiences in similar situations.

Human beings have the special capacity to be self-reflective. We are able to take a step back and look at what we are doing, ponder, “Why am I acting like this in this situation?”, and change our future actions. But too seldom do we take this “one minute pause”  before reacting. 

The capacity for self-reflection becomes urgently important when our “reactions” are not serving us well. It is then that we seek psychotherapy or other help — to figure out why we act as we do and how we might act differently.

True change comes from INSIDE and cannot be given as advice by another. Change from advice is short-term. Through self-reflection, change becomes lasting.  Internal patterns change, like a kaleidoscope turning. THEN new thoughts, emotions, and action steps become possible.

Before a crisis leads to therapy, self-reflection can be learned as the simple self-help skill, Intuitive Focusing. Based upon Eugene Gendlin’s six-step Focusing process (Focusing, Bantam, 1981, 1984), Intuitive Focusing is the disciplined “practice” of self-reflection. Intuitive Focusing makes productive use of the PAUSE for self-reflection.

During the pause, the Focuser turns inward and pays attention to the “intuitive feel,” the “something-more-than-words”  which underlies thoughts, behaviors, actions. During this quiet inner attention, the Focuser looks for words or images that are “just right” in capturing the “intuitive feel.” When “just right” symbolizations are found, the “bodily-felt sense” opens and shifts, is carried forward to new understandings. The kaleidoscope turns, and a whole new pattern of possibilities arises.

The PRISMS/S PROBLEM SOLVING PROCESS begins with the PAUSE and goes through the Intuitive Focusing steps needed for paradigm shifts, for the kaleidoscope to turn.

While Intuitive Focusing can be practiced alone, the quiet time for self-reflection can be greatly facilitated by the company of a Focused Listener. The Focused Listener says back the Focusers words, with special attention to the “feeling tone,” the “something more than words.” In a Focusing Community, people take turns as the Focuser and Listener, helping each other with problem solving.

Experiential Focusing Therapy also places emphasis upon teaching this self-help skill of productive self-reflection, so that clients can continue to solve their own problems throughout their life.

For application in business settings, see my article, “Creative Edge Organizations: Businesses and Organizations As A ‘Kind’ Of Focusing Community” from The Folio: Thirtieth Anniversity Tribute edition at The Focusing Institute, www.focusing.org .

You can learn all about Intuitive Focusing and Focused Listening with the many resources listed below:

CREATIVE EDGE FOCUSING(tm):  SELF-HELP SKILLS FOR HOME AND WORK

Free Downloads:

Complete Focusing Instructions Manual (17 pages)

“Ajas” Instantaneos Mini-Manual

Creative Edge Focusing (www.cefocusing.com ) teaches two basic self-help skills, Intuitive Focusing and Focused Listening, which can be applied at home and at work through The Creative Edge Focusing Pyramid.

Based upon Gendlin’s Experiential Focusing (www.focusing.org ) and Rogers’ Empathic Listening, our website is packed with Free Resources and instructions in these basic self-help skills. Learn how to build Support Groups, Conscious Relationships, and Creative Edge Organizations based upon these basic skills of emotional intelligence.

You can try out    “Focusing: Find Out What Is Bothering You.”

Click here to subscribe to Creative Edge Focusing(TM)’s  Instant “Ahah!” e-newsletter and get the latest exercises first!!! 

Click here for a free Intuitive Focusing Mini-Course

Click here for a free Focused Listening Mini-Course

 See  Core Concept: Conflict Resolution to find a complete mini-course on Interpersonal Focusing and Conflict Resolution, including Rosenberg’s Non-Violent Communication, Blanchard’s “One Minute Apology,” Patricia Evan’s books on Verbally Abuse and Controlling Relationships, McMahon’s Beyond The Myth Of Dominance, and much more.

See  Core Concept: Intimate Relationship to find a complete mini-course on increasing intimacy and sexuality, including the “Sharing Your Day” exercise, Listening/Focusing Partnerships for The Way of Relationship, untangling and equalizing desire, tantric sexuality, and much more.

Download complete Instant “Ahah!” Mini-Manual, in English and Spanish, from CEF Website, or download from links at top of this blog.

Find links to free articles, personality tests, multi-media Self-Help training, Classes and workshops

Dr. Kathy McGuire, Director

Creative Edge Focusing (TM)

www.cefocusing.com

“WHY CRY?” PART 5: BOOKS AND ARTICLES ON TEARS, CRYING, BEING TOUCHED AND BEING MOVED, INNER CHILD HEALING, ACTIVE GRIEVING, TRANSFORMATION

By , March 4, 2009 6:41 pm

Articles by Dr. Kathy McGuire: Being Touched and Being Moved, The Alchemy of Grieving, Focusing Inner Child Work, Finding The Meaning of Tears
 
Crying and vision, crying and opening the heart, crying and connecting (this is such a profound experience when it happens — as a Listener, I tear up in empathy with a Focuser, who may also be touching on tears, and, in my experience, the walls, the envelopes of flesh separating us simply melt away, and we meet in Buber’s I-Thou space — the two of us and The Something More, The Sacred entering in).
 
In my own journey to understand the place of crying, being touched and being moved, particularly, I have found
 
(a) an early book by William Frey called Crying, which, when first published, was a media event. He collected tears in test tubes from people watching a tear-jerker movie, and compared them, their chemical analysis, with “non-emotional” tears, collected questionnaire data on frequency of crying (women five times as often as men!), etc.
 
(b) The book by Anglican hermit Maggie Ross, The Fountain and The Furnace, cited above.
 
(c) Pema Chodrin’s (Buddhist nun) work on the “way of compassion” as a complement to, for instance, Tolle’s “way of enlightenment.” While much of Eastern philosophy seems to emphasize “detachment,” “objectivity,” Chodrin talks about going DOWN into the morass of human pain and living through it and into it, with other humans, with compassion.
 
(d) William Gaylin, Feelings: Our Vital Signs (Harper & Row Perennial, 1979), where he has chapters that are a phenomenology of many different feelings. He has a chapter on “being touched” as a human to human happening, and one on “being moved” as between a human and The Something Greater.
 
Here are links to some of my articles (all found on my website, www.cefocusing.com , Category Free Resources, then Articles):
 
“On Tears and Focusing,”  a mini-research where Focusers spoke about their experience with tears (I have tons of great quotes!). SHORT BUT SWEET
 
“Being Touched and Being Moved: The Spiritual Value of Tears”,   with lots of quotes about how Focuser value their tears. 
 
“Finding The Meaning of Tears,” a book chapter, with more great quotes about how Focusers use their tears and giving actual Focusing exercises for following the path of tears.
 
“Affect in Focusing and Experiential Therapy”, containing quotes from dialogue between Gene Gendlin and myself about the value and role of what I call “cathartic unfolding” vs. “sheer, repeating emotions.” THEORETICAL WITH EXAMPLES
 
“Medical Change Events Through Experiential Focusing,” including the complete transcript of the 12- minute session (also on my DVD Listening/Focusing Demonstrations) where a woman goes from depression/migraine to felt shift, including joyful releasing teariness, and also including my “Five-Minute Grieving” procedure for helping professionals, immediate application for all physicians and helping professionals.
 
“Active Grieving Part One,”  a perspective on grieving as an alchemical, tranformative process
 
“Active Grieving Part Two,”  an actual protocol for active grieving of a loss.
 
“Focusing Inner Child Work With Abused Clients”, which is not about tears directly but about the extreme attitude of awareness toward subtle nuances of word or body gesture which can indicate repressed memories of emotional/sexual/physical abuse in childhood and the extreme attitude of gentleness needed to allow clients to “be with” and work through, “carry forward,” these painful experiences.
 
It was enlightening to me to see how much of my work has this emphasis upon a kind of “going deeper” and “connection” that is associated with even a slight SHEEN OF TEARS in the eyes (sobbing not necessary but welcome!)
 
GREAT BOOK: WHY GOOD THINGS HAPPEN TO GOOD PEOPLE
 
By Stephen Post and Jill Neimark, Why Good Things Happen To Good People: The Exciting New Research That Proves The Link Between Doing Good And Living A Longer, Healthier, Happier Life, Broadway Books, 2007. Read about the Ways of Celebration, Generativity, Forgiveness, Courage, Humor, Respect, Compassion, Loyalty, Creativity , and
 
Chapter 11: The Way of Listening: Offer Deep Presence
 
See more at the author’s organization site,
Unlimited Love Institute. 

CREATIVE EDGE FOCUSING(tm):  SELF-HELP SKILLS FOR HOME AND WORK

Free Downloads:

Complete Focusing Instructions Manual (17 pages)

“Ajas” Instantaneos Mini-Manual

Creative Edge Focusing (www.cefocusing.com ) teaches two basic self-help skills, Intuitive Focusing and Focused Listening, which can be applied at home and at work through The Creative Edge Focusing Pyramid.

Based upon Gendlin’s Experiential Focusing (www.focusing.org ) and Rogers’ Empathic Listening, our website is packed with Free Resources and instructions in these basic self-help skills. Learn how to build Support Groups, Conscious Relationships, and Creative Edge Organizations based upon these basic skills of emotional intelligence.

You can try out    “Focusing: Find Out What Is Bothering You.”

Click here to subscribe to Creative Edge Focusing(TM)’s  Instant “Ahah!” e-newsletter and get the latest exercises first!!! 

Click here for a free Intuitive Focusing Mini-Course

Click here for a free Focused Listening Mini-Course

 See  Core Concept: Conflict Resolution to find a complete mini-course on Interpersonal Focusing and Conflict Resolution, including Rosenberg’s Non-Violent Communication, Blanchard’s “One Minute Apology,” Patricia Evan’s books on Verbally Abuse and Controlling Relationships, McMahon’s Beyond The Myth Of Dominance, and much more.

See  Core Concept: Intimate Relationship to find a complete mini-course on increasing intimacy and sexuality, including the “Sharing Your Day” exercise, Listening/Focusing Partnerships for The Way of Relationship, untangling and equalizing desire, tantric sexuality, and much more.

Download complete Instant “Ahah!” Mini-Manual, in English and Spanish, from CEF Website, or download from links at top of this blog.

Find links to free articles, personality tests, multi-media Self-Help training, Classes and workshops

Dr. Kathy McGuire, Director

Creative Edge Focusing (TM)

www.cefocusing.com

INTEREST AREA: EXPERIENTIAL FOCUSING THERAPY

By , June 25, 2008 9:38 am

INTEREST AREAS: SEVEN DIFFERENT PLACES TO START LISTENING/FOCUSING PRACTICE GROUPS!!! 

The Interest Areas under “Is This You” at The Creative Edge Focusing website (www.cefocusing.com ) give the First Ten Steps you might take to bring the model of Listening/Focusing into seven whole different areas of living: Organizations, Support Groups and Communities, Relationships, Parenting, Education, Spiritual Communities, and Helping Professions (psychotherapy, counselling, medicine, body work, etc.).

In the e-newsletters, I am introducing you to each of these Interest Areas and possible First Steps so that you might start a Listening/Focusing practice group in any of these areas. See BLOGS BELOW THIS ONE IN ARCHIVES FOR JUNE, 2008

Week One Interest Area: Creative Edge Organizations,
Week Two Interest Area: The Way of Relationship,
Week Three Interest Area: Building Community — Support Groups Everywhere,
Week Four Interest Area: Creative Edge Education —Every Gift Awakened (Especially for ADHD) .

INTEREST AREA: EXPERIENTIAL FOCUSING THERAPY (FOT)

Experiential (EXP) Focusing Therapy is Dr. McGuire’s version of Gendlin’s Focusing-Oriented Therapy (Gendlin, E.T. Focusing-Oriented Therapy: A Manual of the Experiential Method, Guilford, 1996).The core skills of Experiential Focusing Therapy, Intuitive Focusing and Focused Listening,integrate into all other approaches to counseling and therapy, including body-centered work, spiritual direction, and medical interviews as well as psychotherapy.

The counselor keeps his/her attention upon the client/patient’s Creative Edge, the “intuitive feel” from which new solutions and creative ideas can arise. S/he also pays attention to the Relational Edge (term created by Glenn Fleisch), her own experience of the interactional “intuitive feel” created between herself and the client.

The counselor uses Focused Listening, including Focusing Invitations, to encourage Intuitive Focusing by the client. However, the counselor can also incorporate all other techniques which might enable the client/patient to step out of fixed, static patterns. This can include body work, Gestalt and other experiential interventions, psychoanalytic and Self Psychology, interpretations of the therapeutic relationship, cognitive/behavioral analysis, Emotion-Focused Therapy, whatever the counselor has in his or her tool bag.

But the goal of interventions is always the same: allowing the client/patient to experience and pay attention to the “intuitive feel” underlying “stuck” patterns, the Creative Edge of change, and to articulate Paradigm Shifts out of this fresh, felt experiencing, using the PRISMS/S Problem Solving Method.

The following articles indicate Dr. McGuire’s specific emphases (you can find them all at www.cefocusing.com under Free Resources: Articles, http://cefocusing.com/freedownloads/index.php:

Affect in Focusing and Experiential Therapy (PDF)
Focusing Inner Child work With Abused Clients (PDF)
Caring Confrontation In Experiential Therapy (PDF)
The “sheen of tears”(“Being Touched and Being Moved” (PDF) as an indicator of areas of profound personal meaning as well as of possible unresolved childhood issues
Experiential Focusing as a method of brief therapy (PDF) and brief therapy from a humanistic standpoint (PDF)
Psychotherapy training through peer counseling (PDF)
Integrating Listening/Focusing moments into medical interviews (PDF), throughout hospitals, and other helping/counseling situations

 For a short description of Experiential Focusing Therapy, see PDF download Experiential Focusing Therapy
See also:
Experiential Focusing Therapy: For Clients
Experiential Focusing Therapy: For Therapists

All Helping Professionals Can “Experientialize” Their Work

Helping professionals include all whose work focus is on helping other human beings, rather than creating solely material or intellectual products. Helping professionals include dentists, physicians, psychologists, social workers, counselors, teachers, nurses, medical technicians, chiropractors, acupuncturists, holistic health practitioners, massage therapists, etc.

Helping professionals can integrate the basic Focused Listening and Intuitive Focusing skills into their work in many ways. They can use them to aid patients and clients, for their own personal growth, and for burnout prevention, an important area for all helping professionals. See More on Focusing and Helping Professionals.

Purchase Dr. McGuire’s manaul, The Experiential Dimension In Therapy.

Ten First Steps To Take To Add Focusing and Listening To Healing

Go to Interest Area: Experiential Focusing Therapy and scroll to the bottom to find the Ten First Steps To Take  to bring Focusing into therapy practice and other helping professions.

Tell me what you think at [email protected] or comment on this blog below !

Click here to subscribe to our Instant “Ahah!” e-newsletter and get the latest exercises first!!!

 See Core Concept: Conflict Resolution to find a complete mini-course on Interpersonal Focusing and Conflict Resolution, including Rosenberg’s Non-Violent Communication, Blanchard’s “One Minute Apology,” Patricia Evan’s books on Verbally Abuse and Controlling Relationships, McMahon’s Beyond The Myth Of Dominance, and much more.

See Core Concept: Intimate Relationship to find a complete mini-course on increasing intimacy and sexuality, including the “Sharing Your Day” exercise, Listening/Focusing Partnerships for The Way of Relationship, untangling and equalizing desire, tantric sexuality, and much more.

Download complete Instant “Ahah!” Mini-Manual, in English and Spanish, from CEF Website

Find links to free articles, personality tests, multi-media Self-Help training, Classes and workshops

Dr. Kathy McGuire, Director

Creative Edge Focusing (TM)

www.cefocusing.com

COMPLETE FOCUSING SESSION: “HOW AM I TODAY?” — NOTICING CRITICS AND CONFLICTS INSIDE

By , January 26, 2008 5:21 pm

Caring Feeling Presence Inside
 
This four weeks, while practicing a Complete Focusing Session, we are learning about turning a Caring Feeling Presence, the Focusing Attitude of friendly, curious, non-judgmental, gentle attention to whatever arises inside. We practiced finding Inner Nurturers and Inner Woundedness (Week 1), Reestablishing Trust With Exiled, “Unpleasant” Inner Aspects (Week 2), and Dealing With Critical Voices and Conflicts (Week 3).
 
Just Acknowledge Critical Voices, Say “I’ll be back later to spend time with you”
 
Today, when you practice the Complete Focusing Session #1: “How Am I Today?”, pay special attention to any Critical Voices which arise. In general, seeing a Critical Voice as an Inner Worrier or Inner Protector, you can simply notice it :” Okay, there is something saying ‘You’re no good at this; nothing is happening; Focusing is stupid” and, simply by noticing it, acknowledging it (saying “Hello,” Ann Weiser Cornell says), you can often just set it aside for the moment and go back to your steps of Focusing.
 
At a later point, you might go back to that Critical Voice as part of your Focusing process: “Okay, now I would like to spend some time with the part that says “This is ridiculous; you are failing like always,” etc., and ask yourself, “Okay, what is that all about?”, and wait for the “feel of that whole thing” to form, and continue with the Focusing Steps:looking for words, images, symbols that capture the “intuitive feel,” resonating and checking until you find symbols that are “just right” and experience a release, a small or large “felt shift” or “paradigm shift.”
 
Articulate “Conflicts” Into “Two Sides” and Spend Time With Each….(Read on here and find the Complete Focusing Instructions to practice )

Download Dr. McGuire’s article, Focusing Inner Child Work

Find links to free articles, personality tests, multi-media Self-Help training, Classes and workshops

Dr. Kathy McGuire, Director

Creative Edge Focusing (TM)

www.cefocusing.com

The site of new insights and creative solutions is at the edge of what is already known. This edge, The Creative Edge, holds implicit within it all past and future knowing about the problem, more than could ever be put into words in a linear way 

FOCUSING: Dealing With Inner Critics, Inner Abusers

By , January 25, 2008 6:42 pm

DIFFERENT FORMS OF INNER CRITICAL VOICES AND DIFFERENT APPROACHES TO THEM
 
For this four weeks, we are working on perhaps the most essential aspect for successful Intuitive Focusing, creating a positive attitude, inside of yourself, for whatever might arise during a Focusing turn.This is The Focusing Attitude.In Week One, I talked about turning a Caring Feeling Presence toward your inner experiencing, finding an Inner Nurturer and an Inner Woundedness. In Week Two, I talked about establishing an inner, trusting relationship between “parts” of the Self that had perhaps been at war for years and didn’t really like each other.
 
Now, we take on Inner Critical Voices: recognizing them and dealing with them.  These, too, will each have an “intuitive feel” to them, a “felt sense” holding a lot more information, if you can take time to separate out the various aspects and “sit with” the “intuitive feel,” the “felt sense,” the “something more” about each of them.
 
The Inner Abusive Relationship: “I Hate Myself, I’m So Stupid, I’m So Worthless”
 
Actually, we are going to start with the most difficult Inner Critical Voice, and that is the one you don’t recognize and you don’t have a “felt sense” for. When you are having the most negative feelings about yourself, you are actually suffering as the Victim of an Inner Abuser…only, instead of hearing the Inner Abuser saying, “You are hateful! You are so stupid! You are so worthless!,” you are saying these words to yourself: “I am hateful, I am so stupid, I am so worthless.”
 
So, here the first step is just separating out these two things. You need to begin to hear the voice of the Inner Abuser saying”You are so…!” and, separately, experience the “felt sense” of your Inner Victim —  feeling afraid, beaten down, overpowered, overwhelmed. And, then, the Inner Victim, with the help of Inner and Outer Listeners/Nurturers/Anchors, needs to be able to stand up to the Inner Abuser and say, sometimes very strongly, “Shut up!”, “Go sit over there!” “I’m putting you behind this brick wall and locking the gate!” Or the Inner Nurturer can join with the Inner Victim and stand together, saying, “We are not going to let this go on!” or “I am not going to let you talk to her that way.”Read the rest of the Focusing approach to Inner Abusers and Inner Critics

Download Dr. McGuire’s article, Focusing Inner Child Work

Find links to free articles, personality tests, multi-media Self-Help training, Classes and workshops

Dr. Kathy McGuire, Director

Creative Edge Focusing (TM)

www.cefocusing.com

The site of new insights and creative solutions is at the edge of what is already known. This edge, The Creative Edge, holds implicit within it all past and future knowing about the problem, more than could ever be put into words in a linear way 

HAVING A PARADIGM SHIFT: COMPLETE FOCUSING SESSION INSTRUCTIONS

By , January 14, 2008 5:35 pm

Gendlin’s Six-Step Focusing Process: McGuire’s PRISMS/S
 
      In Intuitive Focusing, first, you relax and find a felt sense, an “intuitive feel” that is before words and more than words. Then, you go back and forth bween open-ended questions (“Why is this hard for me?”, “What’s the meaning for me?”, “How is this related to that other decision?”) and the “intuitive feel,” looking for words or images that exactly capture “the feel of the whole thing,”resolution, of knowing the meaning.
 
     At this moment of “Ahah!” you are experiencing a “felt shift,” a Paradigm shift. The kaleidoscope turns, and the whole situation is new. New ideas, emotions, and action steps suddenly become possible.
 
     Eugene Gendlin (Focusing, 1981, 1984) was the first to describe Focusing as a series of steps which could be practiced as a self-help, problem solving method. Please see Intuitive Focusing for a full explanation of Gendlin’s six-steps of the Focusing process.
 
     Also review the PRISMS/S Problem Solving Process for Dr. McGuire’s version of the steps leading from Pausing to Paradigm Shifts.
 
      Below is a set of instructions taking you through the complete Intuitive Focusing process.  If you purchase Creative Edge Focusing ™’s Self-help Package , you  can listen to audio CD Intuitive Focusing Instructions, Disc 2, Track 1: Relaxation, Then Focusing. Read Sample Chapter.
 
Be Gentle With Yourself
 
      At all times, please remember the Focusing Attitude, the Caring Feeling Presence inside which we are also practicing these four weeks! Having a Caring Feeling attitude toward whatever arises inside is the best insurance for a wonderful quiet time with your own inner experiencing.
 
      Try these long instructions only as long as you feel comfortable. Don’t be judgmental of yourself if nothing huge seems to be happening. It can take a long time to learn to recognize a felt sense, the “intuitive feel,” amidst all of the other things going on inside of your body (thoughts, images, muscular sensations, etc.). If you’ve recently joined this e-newsletter, later exercises will take you back to practicing separate steps of Focusing, like Relaxation, Clearing A Space, and Getting A Felt Sense. Impatient? You can check earlier e-newsletters about these exercises at the Creative Edge Focusing E-Newsletter Archives. And/or you can start at the beginning of Intuitive Focusing, Disc 1, and try each exercise in sequence.
 
     Don’t force yourself to stay quietly inside longer than is pleasurable for your. Remember, many people learn the basics of Intuitive Focusing and having “felt shifts,” or Paradigm Shifts better if they can be in interaction with a Listening partner. Start your own self-help group, using the Focusing In Community (Focusing en Comunidad) manual from the Self-Help package, or seek individual Coaching or a class/workshop with a Creative Edge Focusing Consultant or Certified Focusing Trainer
 
      If any tears arise during Intuitive Focusing, let them come.  Be very gentle and curious with the place the tears come from, asking “What are these tears all about?”, “Why does this move me?”, “What’s the meaning of these tears?”
 
Three Different Approaches To A Complete Focusing Session
 
     Each of the three sets of complete Focusing instructions we will try in the next lessons  emphasizes a different way of getting a “felt sense” or “intuitive feel.” 
1.             “How Am I Today?”: You simply ask yourself, “How am I today?” and wait and see what comes as a felt sense.
2.             “Clearing A Space”: You clear a space inside, making a  list  of  all the issues you find, positive and negative, then choose the one thing from the list you would like to focus on.
3.             “Focusing On A Situation” You think of a specific situation or issue about which you want to learn more, and find the “bodily sense” of how that whole thing feels.
 
     Try each set. You may find that one way works consistently better for you, or you may find that you like to use different instructions to work on different kinds of issues. But, for the next four weeks, we will practice #1:
 
     1. “How am I today?”-Allow 20-30 minutes  (click to access e-newsletter archive with the complete Focusing Session exercise)
 

Learn more about Intuitive Focusing and Focused Listening  at Creative Edge Focusing’s website, filled with free downloads on creativity, spirituality, collaborative thinking, parenting, innovation in business, and many other aspects of application of Focusing and Listening skills at home, at work, in your community, and globally.

Download our Instant “Ahah!”s Mini-Manual (”Ajas” Instantaneos en espanol) for ten exercises bringing Listening and Focusing into your everyday life starting today.

Download our complete Intuitive Focusing Instructions to start practicing Relaxation, Getting a Felt Sense, and Intuitive Focusing today!

See actual demonstrations of Listening/Focusing in our Self-Help package, a manual in English or Spanish, four CDs of Focusing Instructions, and a DVD with four demonstrations of actual listening/focusing sessions — everything you need to start your own Listening/Focusing Partnership or Support Group or to incorporate these basic self-help skills into existing support groups.

In the side bar at Creative Edge Focusing, subscribe to our free e-newsletter for weekly reminders to practice Relaxation and Focusing exercises and join our free yahoo group, Creative Edge Practice, for ongoing demonstrations, practice, and support.

Find classes/workshops/phone coaching in our Listings section or Coaching/Classes/Consulting with Dr. McGuire in the Store.

Dr. Kathy McGuire, Director

Creative Edge Focusing (TM)

www.cefocusing.com

The site of new insights and creative solutions is at the edge of what is already known. This edge, The Creative Edge, holds implicit within it all past and future knowing about the problem, more than could ever be put into words in a linear way.

THE FOCUSING ATTITUDE: CARING FEELING PRESENCE INSIDE

By , January 12, 2008 5:18 pm

THE FOCUSING ATTITUDE: CREATING A CARING FEELING PRESENCE INSIDE AND AS A FOCUSED LISTENER
 
For the next four weeks, we will work on perhaps the most essential aspect for successful Intuitive Focusing, creating a positive attitude, inside of yourself, for whatever might arise during a Focusing turn.This is The Focusing Attitude.

Free Downloads:

Complete Focusing Instructions Manual (17 pages)

“Ajas” Instantaneos Mini-Manual

Empathy, Congruence, and Unconditional Positive Regard

Caring Feeling Presence is also the essential attitude which you convey to a Focuser when you are being a Focused Listener:
“I am here for you, without judgment. I am happy to receive anything that comes up inside of you, without criticism. I will set aside my own reactions, judgments, own experiences and be here as a Caring Feeling Presence simply to listen to and to give back to you your own experiencing.” It is a necessary component of the “empathy, congruence, and unconditional positive regard” which Carl Rogers defined as the crux ingredients for the healing relationship.
 
Leaning in with Tenderness: A Caring Feeling Presence
 
Once I was having a prolonged argument with another Focusing Trainer at a workshop I was teaching. I kept emphasizing, going with the tears and anger, letting them be experienced. He said it was sufficient to work his feelings through in his imagination, that he did not have to say them out loud, that he did not need to feel them.  Then, in a Focusing turn, the Listener used his name: “So, H, you are saying—” “So, H, what mattered was”  My friend reported to me that just hearing his name created an intimacy that allowed him to feel his tears, and the deeper meanings in his experience, and how valuable that was to him—
 
Another time, I was the Focuser, being Listened to accurately but—well, it felt distant, too objective—I didn’t feel “safe” becoming vulnerable in front of that distance. I asked the Listener to “lean in toward me more—be tender toward me—” When she did this, I was able to feel compassion for myself, and to touch into the place of tears, the deeper meanings for me, the part of me that needed to be comforted in order to grow forward.
 
The Real “First Step” of Focusing: Self-Empathy, Self-Love
 
Pete Campbell and Ed McMahon, creators of the Biospiritual Focusing approach, always started their workshops by teaching The Focusing Attitude, which they called “A Caring Feeling Presence.” They did not think anyone should begin to try out Focusing Instructions without first learning how to be kind and gentle with everything that arises inside.
 
And they knew that Focusers had to have this experience in a bodily-felt way, not just as an intellectual idea. Learning to take this Focusing Attitude toward oneself is a life-long learning for anyone wanting to “make peace” with all the different “parts” or “aspects” of themself.
 
Please try out their introductory exercise for finding a “felt sense,” an “intuitive feel” for this kind of inner caring. It involves learning how it feels, in your body, when you are trying to show complete love and safety to someone. Then, turning that same loving attention, that Caring Feeling Presence, toward your own inner experiences:
 
A CARING FEELING PRESENCE INSIDE
 
“Take a moment to find a comfortable sitting position—
Loosen any clothing that is too tight—
And begin to come quietly inside by closing your eyes and starting to just notice your breathing—
Just noticing your breathing—going in—and out—in—and out—Let any sighs or deeper breathing arise naturally—
(one minute)
Now, notice your body, how it feels in the chair —
Massage any spots that feel sore—
Massage your head—
Wrinkle up your face and stretch your jaw—and relax!!!!!
Make a few circles with your shoulders, bringing them up to your ears, around toward the back, and dropping them down—and repeating four or five times—
(one minute)
And now bring your attention inside, to the place where you find a “felt sense” or an “intuitive feel” when you are using Focusing, often in the center of your body, around the chest/heart area—-
(one minute)
And now, imagine that you work in a hospital—
An infant has been left on the hospital steps—
Let yourself feel the impact of this situation in your body—
It is your job to pick up that infant and to convey to it, through your body, your way of holding it, that it is safe, that it is perfectly and truly wanted in this world. Imagine picking up that infant—
Now, imagine what you would do in your body to convey to that infant that it is prefectly safe, that it is truly wanted in this world—
(one minute)
Notice what you do in your body to convey this loving attention, without words—
(one minute)
Now, imagine turning that same kind of Caring Feeling Presence toward your own inner places, whatever they may be—
(one minute)
Bring to your mind times in your life went you felt loved and valued in this way. Look for particular places or people or animals or situations where you felt completely safe, completely wanted, basking in the warmth of loving attention—
(one to three minutes)
Choose one of these images/places/people/situations that could stand as such a strong symbol of this kind of safety that you could use the memory of it as an anchor or talisman to bring you to that sense of Caring Feeling Presence to your own inside experiences. We’ll call that your Inner Nurturer—
(one to three minutes)
Now, look through your life and store of memories and images and see if you can find an image of a part of yourself that is now or was at some point very much in need of that kind of Caring Feeling Presence. It could be an Inner Child, yourself at a certain age or time of life. But it could be another kind of image: like “a wounded animal” or “a butterfly with a crumpled wing” or “a gangrenous leg—I just want to cut it off” or a particular physical tension (headache, tight jaw, stomach knot) that you often suffer from. We’ll call that your Inner Woundedness—
(one to three minutes)
Now, imagine taking your Inner Nurturer and turning that Caring Feeling Presence toward your Inner Woundedness—
(one to three minutes)
Just spend some time seeing if you can touch your Inner Woundedness with that Inner Nurturing—
(one to three minutes)
And come back into the room when you are ready.
 
Things That Get In The Way of This Inner Attitude
 
This exercise is just a first step. You might have found that Inner Critical Voices arose while you tried this exercise (“This is silly!” “I don’t have any weaknesses!” “It’s too late. The past is the past,” etc. In the next weeks, we will continue working with establishing a Caring Feeling Presence inside, and the things that can get in the way of that. Turning toward oneself, and others, with love and self-love, is a life-long learning! But we are starting today.

Sign up for RSS feed to receive a continuation of this lesson over several weeks.

Learn more about Intuitive Focusing and Focused Listening  at Creative Edge Focusing’s website, filled with free downloads on creativity, spirituality, collaborative thinking, parenting, innovation in business, and many other aspects of application of Focusing and Listening skills at home, at work, in your community, and globally.

Download our Instant “Ahah!”s Mini-Manual (”Ajas” Instantaneos en espanol) for ten exercises bringing Listening and Focusing into your everyday life starting today.

Download our complete Intuitive Focusing Instructions to start practicing Relaxation, Getting a Felt Sense, and Intuitive Focusing today!

See actual demonstrations of Listening/Focusing in our Self-Help package, a manual in English or Spanish, four CDs of Focusing Instructions, and a DVD with four demonstrations of actual listening/focusing sessions — everything you need to start your own Listening/Focusing Partnership or Support Group or to incorporate these basic self-help skills into existing support groups.

In the side bar at Creative Edge Focusing, subscribe to our free e-newsletter for weekly reminders to practice Relaxation and Focusing exercises and join our free yahoo group, Creative Edge Practice, for ongoing demonstrations, practice, and support.

Find classes/workshops/phone coaching in our Listings section or Coaching/Classes/Consulting with Dr. McGuire in the Store.

Dr. Kathy McGuire, Director

Creative Edge Focusing (TM)

www.cefocusing.com

The site of new insights and creative solutions is at the edge of what is already known. This edge, The Creative Edge, holds implicit within it all past and future knowing about the problem, more than could ever be put into words in a linear way

EVENTO DE CAMBIO MEDICO: DE UNA MIGRAÑA A LAGRIMAS DE SIGNIFICADO

By , January 8, 2008 3:28 pm

Mientras que el Ajá Instantáneo # 4 Cinco-Minutos de Dolor se dirige  específicamente a qué hacer si un paciente, amigo o compañero de trabajo comienza a llorar, el resumen de abajo muestra cómo el usar Focusing Intuitivo para “permanecer con” el “sentir intuitivo” de un síntoma físico puede permitir que ese síntoma se abra a un Ajá de significado más profundo, con un brillo de lágrimas en los ojos como una señal del cuerpo de que es un lugar seguro para detenerse e ir más profundamente dentro del “sentir de toda la cosa”.El resumen muestra una pequeña porción de la sesión de Pareja de Focusing.  La Focalizadora es una persona experimentada en el uso de Focusing Intuitivo.  Al principio, cuando la Focalizadora habla acerca de levantarse con lo que parece ser el inicio de una migraña y los asuntos relacionados con ella, la Escuchadora se da cuenta de una leve presencia de lágrimas.

Ella sugiere que la Focalizadora se detenga y “sienta adentro” en el lugar de las lágrimas.   Hacia el final de la sesión, la Focalizadora se ha movilizado desde un profundo sollozo acerca de la carga pesada de la depresión que ella ha tenido “por tanto tiempo” y el experimentar la animación de un “cambio sentido”, “sentirse más liviana”, “¡querer bailar!”  La Focalizadora señala que la migraña ha cedido.

La sesión se inicia con la Focalizadora y la Escuchadora sentadas frente a frente.  La F., debido a su experiencia previa con el proceso de Focusing Experiencial, escogió mantener los ojos cerrados durante la sesión, prestando atención a su experiencia interna.  La Escuchadora, la Dra. McGuire, comienza:

Escuchadora: “Siéntate cómoda, cerrando los ojos para ir adentro, para estar sintonizada con lo que sea que haya allí  Díme si necesitas alguna ayuda o cuando estés lista para comenzar a hablar”

Focalizadora: (Pausa de 10′) “Esta mañana cuando me desperté tenía un dolor en la parte izquierda de la cabeza y pensé: “Oh, es la migraña que viene”… así que estaba tratando de sentir acerca de lo que se trataba, humm, como que mi cuerpo está lleno de toxinas, como si quisiera sacudirme de esas toxinas”.

Escuchadora: “Así que cuando te levantaste, notaste que tenías el comienzo de un dolor de cabeza en la parte izquierda de tu cabeza,  y permaneciste  un momento con ello, tratando de sentirlo. El sentimiento fue el de toxinas en tu cuerpo, y querías simplemente sacudirlas, quitártelas.”

Focalizadora (Pausa de 30 segundos)  “Y noté que mi garganta se cerró esta mañana y eso es algo sobre lo que he estado trabajando – lo hemos estado trabajando juntas – algo emocional, profundo allí, en mi garganta, algo así como “atorado”.

(La Focalizadora está dando el primer paso de Focusing Experiencial “aclarando un espacio”, notando y nombrando los diversos asuntos que ella lleva para poder escoger uno en el cual trabajar).

Escuchadora: “Sí, así que te das cuenta de eso también, tu garganta, atascándose,  eso es algo que hemos trabajado antes, está conectado con cosas emocionales profundas, hasta parece que pude ver un viso de lágrimas mientras lo describías, tal vez solamente estar con eso, permanecer con ese “atascado”…

(La Escuchadora se da cuenta del inicio de lágrimas y da una Instrucción de Focusing Experiencial, sugiriendo el detenerse y prestar atención a la “sensación sentida”)

Focalizadora: (lágrimas visibles bajo los cerrados párpados, enrojecimiento de la cara, voz se torna más ronca)

“Lo que me molesta de ello es que trato de aclarar mi garganta y no se aclara.  Sigo intentándolo y me impide hablar de la manera en que me gusta hacerlo y esto molesta a las personas, creo.

Escuchadora: “Humm”

Focalizadora: “De alguna manera me impide al tratar de proyectar mi voz”

Escuchadora: “Humm”

Focalizadora: “Trato de quitarlo y se mantiene allí, es hum…”

Escuchadora: “Humm – así que lo que te molesta es que intentas aclarar tu garganta y esto no sucede, también piensas que esto es difícil para las otras personas.  Deseas proyectar tu voz y que esta salga.  Esto es difícil para las otras personas también,  en realidad, no puedes hablar”.

Focalizadora: “Eso realmente impide la comunicación”.

Download “Ajas Instantaneos”. Other Spanish Translations at Creative Edge Focusing website. Translations by Agnes Rodriguez of Costa Rica, offering Listening/Focusing Training by phone in English or Spanish .

Ud. puede leer el resumen completo con el comentario, y ver por Ud. mismo el “cambio sentido” en Medical Change Events Through Experiential Focusing.

You can read the entire excerpt, with commentary, and see the “felt shift” for yourself in Medical Change Events Through Experiential Focusing. You can view the entire 12-minute session in the DVD Listening/Focusing Demonstrations, also part of The Self-Help Package. Download “Being Touched and Being Moved: The Spiritual Value of Tears for many examples of how tears and Focusing interrelate.
Download “Finding The Meaning In Tears” for exercises for using Focusing to find the meaning in your tears. Both articles are packed with real-life examples of how tears “touch us” and “move us” in positive ways.

Spend some fun time taking some of the Personality Tests and discovering your “differing gifts,” your Temperaments, your varying Multiple Intelligences, your Shadow Side in the Enneagram.

Learn more about Intuitive Focusing and Focused Listening and Experiential Focusing Therapy at Creative Edge Focusing’s website, filled with free downloads on creativity, spirituality, collaborative thinking, parenting, innovation in business, and many other aspects of application of Focusing and Listening skills at home, at work, in your community, and globally.

Download our Instant “Ahah!”s Mini-Manual (”Ajas” Instantaneos en espanol) for ten exercises bringing Listening and Focusing into your everyday life starting today.

Download our complete Intuitive Focusing Instructions to start practicing Relaxation, Getting a Felt Sense, and Intuitive Focusing today!

See actual demonstrations of Listening/Focusing in our Self-Help package, a manual in English or Spanish, four CDs of Focusing Instructions, and a DVD with four demonstrations of actual listening/focusing sessions — everything you need to start your own Listening/Focusing Partnership or Support Group or to incorporate these basic self-help skills into existing support groups.

In the side bar at Creative Edge Focusing, subscribe to our free e-newsletter for weekly reminders to practice Relaxation and Focusing exercises and join our free yahoo group, Creative Edge Practice, for ongoing demonstrations, practice, and support.

Find classes/workshops/phone coaching in our Listings section or Coaching/Classes/Consulting with Dr. McGuire

Dra. Kathy McGuire

Focusing de Borde Creativo TM

http://www.cefocusing.com

FOCUSING TURN DEMONSTRATION: BIG “FELT SHIFT” IN LIFE-LONG “SCRIPT”

By , December 20, 2007 2:37 pm

This was such a paradigmatic example of Gendlin’s Focusing self-help technique (Focusing, Bantam, 1981,1984) and McGuire’s Intuitive Focusing, that I wanted to share it here. It includes Clearing  A Space, deeper Focusing, and a huge bodily-felt shift, predicted to cause lasting change in “personality,” in how the person lives from then on.

 It also ended up capturing something about this holiday season, the symbol of a young, struggling, “holy” family (Christian or not, it is this symbolism that touches me).
 
The turn happened on the Creative Edge Practice yahoo group where we are developing a model, a safe place for learning about Listening/Focusing directly in an email group. You can join us! Go to the link to read a description of the group.
 
In response to my Focusing turn, three different people offered Listening Reflection, each beautifully, empathically “holding and grasping” my message and giving it back to me, enriched by their own being-there in a Listening way. What an educational experience to be able to compare styles of Reflecting! 
 
Here is the complete turn: it started slowly, me thinking only of Clearing a Space, moving into a deep Focusing, huge felt-shifting experience. The kaleidescope turned, and everything is newly in process:
 
“Okay, I am going to touch base with myself, as this holiday time (for me, my 62nd birthday Dec. 24, then Christmas, Dec. 25, New Years….) by Clearing A Space, just to see what is on my plate.  No desperate issue to use Focusing with, but a sense of wanting to “take an inventory,” see what is there (Clearing A Space is Getting A Felt Sense Exercise #3, p.10 in Complete Focusing Instructions download you received, also on CD Intuitive Focusing Training, Track 10. You can find e-newsletters about it at E-newsletter archive, dates 10/12-11/1 ):
 
Phew!!  All that teaching done, now turning toward myself, just beginning to follow my breathing as a way of coming inside my body—  big breath, big sigh. Ahhhh!
 
—Got to slow down, give up “teaching” mind set, take time, take those whole “minutes” for finding the felt sense, not try to do this fast—
 
—-(long pause for felt sensing)   Wow! (almost teary feeling) This holiday is almost here, after all these months of build up, and, if I am not careful, I am going to “miss it,” miss the “holiday” time-off, time for relationships, feeling of it ——
 
— Moving into a little Focusing here —- I am not really taking a full break —still doing email, blogging, website about three hours a day —what if I took a total break for the week from Christmas to New Years? —– tension in my shoulders — responsibility — also almost teary : “I would miss my email community — they are a large part of my “family” —-
 
—Many people also experiencing this “holiday,” not wanting a lot of emails — natural slow down?(doing some meridian tapping on sore spots each side of my collar bone: “I carry so much tension, even when I am trying to be on vacation —-TRYING!” (Big sigh, letting go of some tension—)
 
—Leaving further Focusing on that issue for another time. Back to Clearing A Space (I am looking for the peace, the “Except for all of that, I am completely okay!” experience that can come just with Clearing). (Big breath. Sigh. Releasing some tension). Ahhhh!
 
—Next issue that arises: Seeing my son, daughter-in-law, new grandson today— almost teary feeling — they are like Mary and Joseph — too young. They have a home, but not much else in the way of security — the world against them, too, in some way, because of their ADHD way of being (more teary here — pausing to sense into this. More of a sad sigh…)— some actual tears now, some relief in that symbolism — that there will be some angels and shepherds and wise men for them, too — some supports —that it is “not just me” trying to hold them up —WOW!  That is an insight for me. Not to experience only all the hardship side but to see that there is some world-love, some world-support for them also—-NOT JUST ME (more teary feeling there. I will pause to be with that part — the strain I put on me to “hold them up” —)Big sigh—-
 
—My son will be at least yelled at at work, if not fired, because people stole something while he was cashier — it wasn’t totally his fault, but he was crying, stressed out, about it — but also angry about being blamed —
 
—And he is considering joining the military as a way to cope with this young family, all the bills….that is a big “weight” on me (I am drooping under the crush of it)  Big Sigh.  So, there is that. That is a heavy one — but I am reminded of the “support” symbolism above — the weight of that, the decision, whatever happens, it’s not all on my shoulders (ALL??? REally, in some way, none of it is on my shoulders —tears, sobbing, really, here —- I really cannot “remove this cross” from them. It is theirs to bear, not mine—much more sobbing there, nausea —- I would much rather be able to control it, to take it on, take care of it, make it come out alright —- more sobbing—-
 
(Had to get up and walk around. There is a huge physical pain shooting all up the sides of my torso, through my spine/ribcage, and sobbing about how I would rather carry it, even if stressful, than acknowledge that I really can’t control it, I can’t fix it— of course, logically, I know this — but THIS IS DIFFERENT. THIS IS LIKE AN EXPERIENTIAL, BODY-KNOWING THAT I CAN’T CONTROL IT. THIS COULD BE A BIG SHIFT, A BIG CHANGE IN MY MAJOR LIFE PATTERN OF TRYING TO CARRY EVERYTHING— so, I am going to breath into this and walk more, let this body-level shift happen more thoroughly—)
 
—This is big. I can’t even comprehend, really, what would come next as a way-of-being if I put this down, this idea that I am controlling/saving/holding up things, like whether people I love live or die, etc. — I’m thinking “This is what the Freudians mean by ‘secondary gain’ — what is the person gaining by having what looks like an unproductive pattern/behavior?” I’m feeling this experientially, as a body, not just a head, knowing — Big sigh. I need to take more time to “live into” this body-shifting—- Pause again, walking.
 
—  Sitting, just breathing, feeling twinges shooting all through my body, loosenings, stretchings — but also part of me that wants to “crunch back up,” go back to thinking I am controlling things — but, I know that, fortunately, I guess, in real felt-shifting, like this is, there is no going back —-“The kaleidescope turns, and everything is new.” Darn!!! (meridian tapping those sore spots on collarbone again)
 
— A glimmering: “Well, silly, you weren’t really controlling things before either, with all that stress and tension. YOu just thought you were!!!!!!!”” (something in me starts shuttering here, shaking with fear — this is too scary for that part. I will be with that part now, turning compassionate, nurturing attention to it —–) Pause.
 
—I’m looking at a poster I have on the wall. It is a big pool of wavy water. Floating in the middle, a mother cradles her child in her hands. There are larger hands cradling those two. And really large hands cradling “all of that.”  I want to comfort myself there, convince myself, believe that there are “larger hands” holding it all up:”S/he’s got the whole world in his/her hands,” the song says —- Ahhhh! More pausing to “sit with” all of this — the scared part, the letting go, the hope that there is love/support in this world so harsh for these young parents — some teariness there—Ahhhh!
 
—still too scary — thinking of my child going off to Afghanistan or Iraq, him thinking he is going to work on computers and come out getting a job for $120,000!!!!  Too young. Too innocent to face these huge decisions…but also very stubborn. Very much needing to “do it myself.” And, yes, it is his destiny. I cannot do it for him. It ruins the very “thing,” the “selfhood” for him if I try to decide for him. Sigh….
 
—I can’t do anymore with this place now. Need it to rest. Trust the continuing bodily shifting. Ahhh!
 
— Sense that there is this whole “other thing” on my plate. Where I thought I would spend my Focusing time. This whole issue about my work, what new projects I should take on, what leave alone. How be less stressed. I’m not going to go there now. Another time. But I know they are related. Saving my son. Saving the world. It’s all part of that same “life script” :”I can hold it all up. I can change it all. I can save everybody, if I just work hard enough.”  Big sigh!!!
 
I’m stopping here! Another huge post, huge Focusing turn come out of Clearing a Space. I do feel lighter. My spine straighter, my body less hunched over with carrying it all. I am optimistic! I trust this felt-shifting, carrying forward process. I know it is in the “direction of righting,” wholeness.
 
I do feel finished.  I do not need reflection. But, of course, it is always welcome. It is always nice to ALSO be heard, as well as hearing myself. And, of course, this group is a place to practice Reflecting, so I’m game for any person to try it, perhaps with just some small part…or not!  It’s vacation!
 
Warmly, and thanks for Listening, “holding this space.” I would not do this Focusing at all this well or deeply “alone”.
 
Kathy

Learn more about Intuitive Focusing and Focused Listening and Experiential Focusing Therapy at Creative Edge Focusing’s website, filled with free downloads on creativity, spirituality, collaborative thinking, parenting, innovation in business, and many other aspects of application of Focusing and Listening skills at home, at work, in your community, and globally.

See actual demonstrations of Listening/Focusing in our Self-Help package, a manual in English or Spanish, four CDs of Focusing Instructions, and a DVD with four demonstrations of actual listening/focusing sessions — everything you need to start your own Listening/Focusing Partnership or Support Group or to incorporate these basic self-help skills into existing support groups.

In the side bar at Creative Edge Focusing, subscribe to our free e-newsletter for weekly reminders to practice Relaxation and Focusing exercises and join our free yahoo group, Creative Edge Practice, for ongoing demonstrations, practice, and support.

Find classes/workshops/phone coaching in our Listings section or Coaching/Classes/Consulting with Dr. McGuire

Dr. Kathy McGuire, Director

Creative Edge Focusing (TM)

www.cefocusing.com

The site of new insights and creative solutions is at the edge of what is already known. This edge, The Creative Edge, holds implicit within it all past and future knowing about the problem, more than could ever be put into words in a linear way

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