Posts tagged: depression

MICHAEL JACKSON: CREATIVITY AND BIPOLAR DISORDER

By , August 24, 2009 4:26 pm

In her book, Touched With Fire: Manic-Depressive Illness and The Artistic Temperament , Kay Redfield Jamison researched the relationship between creativity and madness. Looking at Poet Laureats of England, and their family histories, she found that, yes, there was a statistically significant greater incidence of institutionalization for mental illness and suicide in these highly creative people and their ancestors.

Jamison concluded that manic-depressive disorder, unless treated with medication and/or psychotherapy, was a TERMINAL ILLNESS — e.g., highly likely to end in death from direct suicide or the slower suicide of alcoholism and other addictions.

In her next book, An Unquiet Mind: A Memoir of Moods and Madness, Jamison, a neuro-psychiatrist, presented herself as suffering from manic-depressive disorder (recently renamed as “bipolar disorder”) of an extreme form, including psychotic hallucinations. When depressed, she saw blood streaming down her windows; when manic, she bought all the snake bite kits in her city, fearing an overrun of snakes.

Jamison describes the difficulty in giving up the manic state, giving up the poetic, mysterious, depressive boyfriends, the heightened sense of aliveness. But she also describes the final pleasures of stable relationship and stable moods. She also sees psychotherapy as a viable option to long-term medication.

I did not know Michael Jackson. I cannot diagnose him. But I wonder when I see “super-human” people, many of them performers, crash and burn. Jamison says, “Manic-depressive disorder is a terminal illness.”

Manic-depressive, or bipolar, disorder comes on a continuum of severity, from the mild ups and downs of mood to more pronounced cycles of mood to the extremes of psychotic hallucination. It is not uncommon for great artists to wake up with a whole symphony written in their head, to stay awake for several days writing it all down, to be bursting with energy. This can be a manifestation of mania.

Does that mean the person is mentally ill, and not creative? Not at all. The creations stand as authentic. It is only the ravages of such creativity on the physical body, and the effect of its cyclical aftermath of depression upon the creator that is of concern.

I hope that, using Jamison’s wisdom and research and personal experience, we can help our “super-humans,” those with monstrous creativity, to receive help that might stabilize their lives and help them stop self-medicating with addiction and STAY ALIVE,  without putting out their mighty creative spark.

Creative Edge Focusing (TM) teaches self-help skills, Intuitive Focusing, which can be used for centering and unfolding one’s creativity by “listening” to the inner self, and Focused Listening, helping another to articulate their creative ideas and heal emotional stuckness and overwhelm.

Find free instructions and downloads as well as classes and Focusing-Oriented therapy 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

 

 

 

FOCUSING AND CHILDREN: PRESERVING AND RECLAIMING TRANSPARENCY

By , May 30, 2009 4:12 pm

Toddlers, before learning words, can be so transparent, their whole body beaming out their emotions and needs.

First trips to the park, 16-months old, my steadily-walking toddler grandson simply sits down, in shock and awe, many times as he sees other people his size, all kinds of dogs, people stretched out on the grass. He simply cannot stand up and take in all this new information at the same time.

Almost choking on a piece of orange, as soon as recovered from the emotional upset, he “asks” (by pointing) for another piece of orange. He tastes it, chews it carefully, a quizzical look on his face. He simply MUST determine what went wrong, master this scary and unexpected experience.

First day in day care, he carries his jacket with him all day long, beaming out “I am reminding myself of home, I am holding on to home, I will be going home.”

Uneasy about leaving his home with Dad and Great-Grandparents to spend the day with me, he insists upon taking Great-Grandpa’s hats, and wearing them for hours.

As we develop more cognitively, our capacity to “symbolize” intervenes between our sheer emotional experiences and what we “choose” to express.

But, still, at age seven, I could read my son’s inner experience from outer symbols. Adopted at birth, having just received his first letter and photo of his birthmom, showing her with her “new” family, husband and child, he runs from the room angrily. I find him in his room a little later, where he has unravelled several hundred feet of fishing line from the spool, creating a huge tangle all around him (this image brings tears to me now, 15 years later). Using Roger’s Empathic Listening, I can reflect him to himself: “Seems like you are feeling all tangled up inside.”

As we get older and older, and through painful life experiences saying “Don’t show yourself here. Don’t cry. Don’t show fear. Don’t even show awe and joy,” we lose “touch” with ourselves, with that transparency, so that we cannot even name our own experience to ourselves, much less authentically express it to others.

Gendlin’s Focusing (www.focusing.org ) and McGuire’s Intuitive Focusing can help you refind and reclaim your inner experiencing, allowing you to find the clarity needed to move forward in life situations

Using Intuitive Focusing and Empathic, Reflective, Focused Listening with children can help them stay in tune with themselves and be able to express their inner experience, their emotions, wants, needs, creative ideas. See The Children’s Corner at The Focusing Institute.

Read a book review of Stapert and Verleifde’s Focusing With Children: The Art of Communication with Children At School and Home , UK: PCCS Books, 2008 and order the book from The Focusing Institute bookstore or from Amazon.

Also see Edwin M. McMahon’s Beyond The Myth Of Dominance for stories of taking a Focusing attitude with children, and McMahon’s The Little Bird Who Found Herself, a colorful and simple story book for children (and adults) about “sitting with” instead of “running away from” feelings and other felt-sensing in the body.

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

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

INTUITIVE FOCUSING: FROM INTUITION TO CREATIVITY, TRANSFORMATION, PARADIGM SHIFTS.PHOTOS OF CHILD’S FIRST CHRISTMAS PRESENT ILLUSTRATE CLICK!

By , March 25, 2009 7:15 pm

Malcolm Gladwell, in Blink: The Power of Thinking Without Thinking (Little, Brown, 2005) shows that, contrary to popular belief, the majority of decisions are not made through careful listing of pros and cons but through following a “gut instinct” or an “intuition.” Intuitive Focusing , often accompanied by Focused Listening, is a predictable self-help skill for “unpacking” these “intuitive feels,” “bodily-felt senses” into usable insights and action steps, for personal growth, creativity, spirituality, intimacy, parenting, innovative decision making and problem solving at home and at work.

A child’s wonder at discovering a first Christmas present at the bottom of a deep bag provides a good symbol for the wonder and transformation to be found by using Focusing for “sitting with” and “going deeper into” the vague, preverbal information constantly offered up by the body/mind, the deeper psyche.

Working with Flavia Cymbalista, Focusing Teacher at www.marketfocusing.com , George Soros and other financial managers explored the use of Focusing in relation to “gut instincts” amidst the uncertainty of financial markets.

Over the last 30+ years, thousands of people have used Focusing for emotional, spiritual, and creative problem solving.

The six steps of the Focusing Process, from Eugene Gendlin’s self-help book, Focusing (Bantam, 1981, 1984):

Step One: Clearing A Space

Deciding to stop and take the time to sit down and pay attention to what is going on inside, the “preverbal” feel of your living, problems, decision making.

Step Two: Getting A Felt Sense

Setting aside all of your already-known intellectual answers and waiting quietly, as long as a minute, for the “bodily felt sense” of “this whole question” to arise.

Step Three: Finding A Handle

Carefully looking for words/images/gestures that can begin to describe the “bodily-felt sense” : “jumpy,” “like a whirly-gig, going round and round,” ” wanting to scrunch down into a tiny ball, disappear,” etc.

Step Four: Resonating And Checking

Taking any symbols (words/images/gestures) that come, and carefully going back and forth between the symbols and the “intuitive feel,” until the body-sense says, “Yes! That is exactly right! That fits perfectly!”

Step Five: Asking

Going deeper by asking the “intuitive feel” open-ended questions like, “And what is so important about that?” or “And what is the crux of that whole thing?” or “And why does that make me feel sad?”, and, instead of answering from the “head,” waiting each time, again at least for a minute, for the “bodily-felt sense,” the vague, preverbal knowing, to arise in the middle of the body, around the chest/heart area, and only then carefully looking for a Handle word/image/gesture, and Resonating and Checking until the body says “Yes! That is it!”. Continuing this Asking as long as you like or until you experience a “felt shift”:  “Yes, that is exactly it. Now I understand what is going on and what I need to do to act on this information.

Step Six: Receiving

Taking a moment to “live into” this new knowing, let it sink into the cellular level of the body. Taking a moment to be grateful to the “body/mind” for offering you this information. Taking a moment to receive any new insights that have come before going into action.

You can read a more thorough description of Dr. McGuire’s version, The PRISMS/S Problem Solving Process.

You can read applications Including Focusing Alone, Focusing Partnerships, Interpersonal Focusing for Conflict Resolution, Creative Edge Meetings, Creative Edge Organizations in The Creative Edge Pyramid.

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

INTUITIVE FOCUSING: FROM MUD POTS TO GEISERS AND TECHTONIC SHIFTS PHOTOS YELLOWSTONE CLICK!

By , March 21, 2009 2:34 pm

Stagnant and sterile: Stuck!

The psyche, like Yellowstone Park, is a seething cauldron, brewing and steaming, shrouded in mist, ever ready to throw up a bubble or a blast of something new, and capable of deep change, techtonic shifts.

Intuitive Focusing, based upon Eugene Gendlin’s six-step Focusing Process (Focusing   www.focusing.org ) is a simple, predictable self-help method for “sitting with” the mist, the bubbling, the cauldron, and finding words and images which bring the depths into consciousness.  Undercurrents  can become “techtonic shifts,” Instant “Ahah!”s of creativity, emotional problem solving, innovation, spirituality.

The PRISMS/S Problem Solving Process begins with the pregnant Pause and uses Intuitive Focusing to find words and images which lead to paradigm shifts.

The Creative Edge Focusing Pyramid of applications allows use of Intuitive Focusing at home and at work,  alone, in partnerships, in groups/teams, for interpersonal conflict resolution, for Creative Edge Meetings, and Creative Edge Organizations.

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

INTUITIVE FOCUSING: THE GIFT IN EMOTIONAL DEPRESSION, ECONOMIC RECESSION, AND OTHER TIMES OF “IMPRISONMENT”

By , March 13, 2009 12:03 pm

Times of grief, depression, economic recession, imprisonment, in the external world or internally self-imposed, can give the time needed to go deeply, “fish up” new energies and creativities from the bottom feeders, and come out renewed.

Intuitive Focusing, especially in the company of Focused Listening from an empathic friend or support group, is a simple self-help tool for doing this fishing, providing predictable steps for “Ahah!” experiences, at home, work, and in the community, while avoiding getting drowned in the process!

A friend posted this on the Focusing Discussion e-list (subscribe at www.focusing.org under “Felt Community”) and, with his permission, I share it with you:

“(A blog about innovation prompts the following thoughts, which takes form together with what comes for me)

On reflecting on these dark and unprecedented times, amidst gathering clouds and raging storms… it occurs that our predicament is not without parallel (I do not mean 1929), and that it is only that we have not just yet recognised the edges of our cell. By way of locating ourselves, a we-ing of us in this, an Eskimo proverb says that in the storm is the time to fish…

So I’d like to tell you a story… but first, what are the similarities in the lives of Mahatma Gandhi, Martin Luther King, and Nelson Mandela? Each made a personal and social contribution to equality that was far-reaching, upset a status quo, and has sustained beyond their lives. Each recognised the energy of truth and non-violence. And each spent a lot of time in jail, and each found it to be productive time for reflecting and writing, re-editing and re-imagining the world as-it-was-known.

Ibn Al-Haitham is less known but no different. Ab? Al? al-Hasan ibn ibn al-Haytham (also known as Al hazen) is considered as the first ‘scientist’, a pioneer of the scientific method and a ‘father’ of optics. He headed a project to regulate the flow of the Nile in Egypt. Once he decided it was impossible, he escaped severe punishment from the Fatimid caliph in Cairo only by pretending to be mad. So instead of a death sentence, he was kept under house arrest until Hakim’s death in 1021.

There, in-house (as more than a few of us are about to be), he spent his time experimenting with light and physics, and made the discovery of light travelling in a straight line (instead of light beaming out of eyes as it was known) by making holes in the prison’s wall and seeing how buildings outside were depicted upside down on the other wall. Ibn al-Haitham gave the first clear description, illustration, and correct analysis of the camera obscura. The word ‘camera’ comes from the Arabic (qamara), which means dark or private room.

During this time in prison, he wrote the influential Book of Optics and scores of other important treatises on physics, medicine, science and mathematics problems (among which he explored the squaring of the circle). More than 200 works he wrote on all these topics, and in particular published a seven-volume treatise on optics which had great celebrity and influenced western thought, notably that of Bacon and Kepler. His time in prison gave him time to open himself to new theories, and elaborate the gift of a deeper science of optics some 6 centuries before Isaac Newton’s studies.

So in thinking about  ‘our time in prison’, and considering the evolving impacts that the decline-of-empire inevitably bring, this might also just be our opportunity to explore new ways of being-before-doing in a global self-righting-and-redistribution. Seeking new ways to see and know, even when the images are unfamiliar, upsidedown, senseless, or without a pattern that can be quickly picked.

Not a story directly related to Focusing, but when I hear ‘try Focusing with anything’, I want also to try it with contemporary apprehension, with uncertainty and suburban dread, with this wintering and these icy currents, with what works at all anywhere in this we-ing across the world, in our qamaras and private connections, in my living, seeking wild hybridisations and simpler, quieter approaches – much like in remembering how to fish… in a storm.
Mmm … what might that feel like…”

My friend includes a link to a beautiful short video, A Father’s Tools and The Tears of Things, by Tim Wilson, who includes many more “deep fishing” videos at www.personamedia.com .

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

“WHY CRY?” PART ONE: ARE WOMEN BETTER AT CRYING THAN MEN?

By , February 22, 2009 6:06 pm
TAKING TEARS SERIOUSLY: WOMEN CRY FIVE TIMES AS OFTEN AS MEN!
 
William Frey, in his book Crying,  states research which found that women cry five times as often as men. Certainly, there is a difference, and perhaps a skill, worth exploring here, if we take the value of tears and crying in a positive way.
 
TEARS OF WONDER/JOY, BEING TOUCHED AND BEING MOVED, AS POSITIVE, TRANSFORMATIVE EXPERIENCES
 
In a recent discussion about the many photos of “tears of joy” throughout the world which appeared in conjunction with Obama’s inauguration, I started a discussion about such “tears of joy,” “tears of ‘being touched’ and ‘being moved’ on The Focusing Discussion e-list (join at www.focusing.org under Felt Communities and read the archives for November/December, 2008 —). Fellow list members came back with some wonderful articles and multi-media on the positive place of tears.
 
I have had an ongoing debate with Eugene Gendlin, creator of Focusing, and others about the place and value of tears in change processes using Focusing and Focusing-Oriented Psychotherapy.
 
Gendlin’s position is that some tears are simply repetitive, “sheer” emotion, and change will not happen unless the Focuser pays attention to the wider, deeper, “felt sensing” under the tears: “What are these tears about for me?” and pausing for a “felt sense” of “the whole thing” to form.
 
I agree with Gendlin about this, tears and crying that seem repetitive, stuck, often cried from a helpless, “victim” stance.
 
But there is another kind of tears and crying which I experience as deeply transformative, as part of Gendlin’s “felt shift,” the crux of change within the Focusing model. I call these tears “cathartic unfolding”: tears and crying accompanying a deep shifting and opening and “carrying forward” at the bodily level. I experience these kind of “tearful felt shifts” as among the deepest in terms of true, lasting transformation of the psyche.
 
Gendlin tends to say, “Yes, receive these tears, value them, but they are a ‘side product,’ not an essential aspect of the ‘felt shift’ through Focusing.” I agree that ALL “felt shifts” do not have to include tears, in fact, most do not. But I think I disagree with Gendlin and others on what I see as the ADDITIONAL significance of felt-shifts accompanied by “cathartic unfolding.”
 
I also see more subtle “tearing up,” the slight sheen of tears in the eye, as an indication of places of deep meaning. So, when being a Listener for a Focuser, or a Focusing-Oriented Therapist, I am likely to ask the Focuser if it would make sense to stop and “sense into” the place of tears, as a pathway to profound personal meanings.
 
I have approached this difference with Gendlin as a difference between “masculine” and “feminine” in the Jungian sense, as a difference between being a strong Thinker (T) and a strong Feeler (F) on the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator (MBTI). On the MBTI, 60-70% of men score as Thinkers, leaving 30-40% male Feelers, and vice versa for women, 60-70% Feelers but also 30-40% Thinkers. So, there are many men for whom tears come easily, and many women who are not so close to their tears. See my articles, “Jung, MBTI, and Experiential Theory,” “The Body As A Source Of Knowledge,”  and “Existential Phenomenology: A Philosophy Articulating Feminine Experience,” .

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: TRANSFORMATION = PHOTOS OF LOTUS FLOWER OPENING

By , February 6, 2009 11:48 pm
Lotus bud potential
Lotus bud potential
Lotus bud unfurls like Focusing attention

Lotus bud unfurls like Focusing attention

Potential Becoming Whole: "Felt Sense" opening

Potential Becoming Whole: "Felt Sense" opening

Lotus Fully Open, Potential Fulfilled

Lotus Fully Open, Potential Fulfilled

And we begin another cycle, bud to flower

And we begin another cycle, bud to flower

Intuitive Focusing is a meditation-like self-help skill that allows you to set aside pre-formed “intellectualizations” and find the fresh, experiential, immediate “bodily felt sense” of problems and creative ideas. Steps of Focusing allow you to find words and images for this “intuitive feel,” letting totally new solutions, ideas, and action steps unfold.

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

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