Eugene Gendlin’s Focusing

bullet waves 9  green on green img030_crEugene Gendlin’s Focusing

Focusing is another therapy which I like a lot. It teaches you how to tune into your body and sense how you are feeling. (That’s feeling in the sense “I feel restless” rather than “I feel global warming is a major problem.” ) It is a wonderful therapy.

Normally, we ignore or over-ride our feelings. But life is the life of the body, and feelings are the truth of the body. So as you tune into your feelings, you are tuning into a deep source of wisdom about how to live. And when you attend to feelings respectfully, they automatically flow through in a healing way. Focusing teaches you how to achieve that.

In fact, all effective therapists who work in any depth work with feelings in this way. It’s proved by research to be a core part of any transformative process.  Carl Rogers’ Client-Centred therapy is a first cousin to focusing, and EFT (Emotional Freedom technique) achieves a similar effect. So it’s not unique. But Rogers brings to centre stage the therapist’s understanding of the client, so Rogerian work is not a self-help technique. Focusing is the only therapy school to systematically teach in detail this foundational personal development skill.

Strengths as a stand-alone psychotherapy: An excellent therapy and also a self-help tool which can help you move really deep. In harmony with the natural human emotional healing process. A valuable half-way house between therapy and meditation.

Weaknesses as a stand-alone psychotherapy: Not at all action oriented and weak on challenge and honesty. Entirely concerned with the moment-to-moment feeling process to the exclusion of other aspects of change. Lacks a body of wisdom about how emotions interrelate and how they arise from relationships, and no practical psychology for pragmatic change.

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