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Introduction to Focusing

Focusing is a gentle, yet transformative approach to listening to ourselves and others. Asking the question, ‘What wants my attention right now?’ we allow a space to open within us. Into this space, our deeper impulses come more fully into our awareness and begin to find a voice. As we learn Focusing, we discover how to respond to this space creatively, and how to enable fresh directions to open up with the issues and people that concern us, and in our lives in general.

By simply sitting and listening within, without judgement (supported by a Focusing teacher or partner), Focusing gives us a way of under­standing the meaning and implicit wisdom held by our bodies, combined with spontaneous images, metaphors and dreams. We do this by tuning into our felt-sense of a situation — taking in the whole of it, and feeling its effect on our whole being.

What are the benefits of Focusing?

  • Healing past rifts, pain and depression
  • Moving beyond blocks
  • Making clearer choices
  • Fostering self-respect and inner confidence
  • Better relationships with others
  • Increasing health and happiness
  • Improving sleep
  • Benefitting from dreams

More about the benefits of Focusing

Healing past rifts, pain and depression

Our body-and-being has an implicit knowing of what is right for us (although we often experience instead a feeling of what is wrong with us). In focusing, the felt-sense gives us a safe and profound way to be present with our painful feelings, and enables us to discover what it is they are wanting to contribute to our lives.

Moving beyond blocks

Our mind can move across time from past, present to future. But change happens here and now. So when your life is somehow blocked, the first thing to do is to come fully and naturally into the here and now. This is the only place where change is possible. Focusing gives us a way to be fully and naturally present with what is alive in us. As we do this, we can also discover what holds us back. We then find ourselves able to cater to the different sides of ourselves in a way that leaves us free to act as a whole, complete person.

Making clearer choices

Inner conflict (ranging from how we do a small task to major life-decisions) is uncomfortable and, at worst, destructive. Focusing opens up ways for us to hear the wisdom of each part of ourselves, without getting bogged down in confusion, anxiety or fear. As we learn to trust and identify our ‘inner compass’, we can move forward with clarity and confidence.

Fostering self-respect and inner confidence

As we learn to hear the wisdom within our thoughts and feelings, we gain confidence in our own unique path. We learn to greet whatever is within us with an attitude of radical acceptance — with interest and curiosity about what is there, without ‘falling in’ to old, familiar or difficult states.

Better relationships with others

As our attitude to our inner world changes, so does our attitude to what is around us. We begin to greet other people with the same interest and acceptance — recognising the impulses that drive them, and responding with the same natural compassion that we are able to give to ourselves in the Focusing space.

Increasing health and happiness

As our innate happiness begins to be felt more tangibly in our lives, we naturally want to orientate our lifestyles in a more healthy and compatible manner. The sense of freshness and aliveness that comes from experiencing the shifts in Focusing also pervades our physical being. There is much anecdotal evidence, not just of radical shifts towards better health, but of healing major sickness.

Improving sleep and understanding dreams

We also teach applications of Focusing for finding better quality sleep, and ways of dealing with insomnia (see: In addition, by finding our felt-sense of a dream, we can explore and open up the language and symbolism of dreams, so that the beneficial message of a dream is understood and felt in our body and being.

Who learns Focusing?

While used by many counsellors and therapists, Focusing is also learned and practised by non-professionals worldwide. It provides a safe and confidential environment to explore our inner worlds, and to experience the felt-shifts within us. Focusing is supported by a long series of operational research studies conducted first at the University of Chicago and now internationally (see ).

Learning Outcomes:

  • How to locate, find and create space for a felt-sense
  • Exquisite listening that allows the felt-sense to move and shift
  • ‘Clearing a space’ to cope with over-loaded and busy life-styles
  • Subtle approaches which bring semi-conscious and unconscious impulses into awareness
  • Freeing up core beliefs that cause stuckness and block creativity
  • Ways to tune into our ‘inner compass’ within a hectic working day
  • Applications of Focusing to sleep and our dream life
  • Focusing partnership work, to sustain future development and learning



‘There is no negative energy

because what is negative, what is blocked, bears the solution implicitly in itself.’

Eugene Gendlin



Download Information

PDF Introduction to Focusing



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