Focusing: A way to deepen experiencing for more effective psychotherapy

Oct 27, 13 Focusing: A way to deepen experiencing for more effective psychotherapy

In the mid 1960s, a philosophy student named Eugene Gendlin started asking some hard questions about the process of psychotherapy: “Why doesn’t therapy succeed more often?… When it does succeed, what is it that those patients and therapists do? What is it that the majority fail to do?”

Over the next 15 years, Gendlin and his colleagues at the University of Chicago (including founder of the client-centered school of therapy, Carl Rogers) conducted a series of studies that concluded something surprising about psychotherapy: the key element to success is not the skill of the therapist, nor their methodology, but the therapy client’s own inner process.

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Women and Depression

Sep 19, 13 Women and Depression

For ten years, Gina suffered in silence with an illness that affects one in four women during the course of a lifetime. The illness affected her eating and sleeping habits, her ability to concentrate, her sense of self-worth, her sex drive and her ability to enjoy life. She felt tired all the time, and while she managed to keep up with her work duties, nothing was accomplished without tremendous effort. At times Gina’s illness was so severe, she felt like killing herself.

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Inspiring stories of transformation through Focusing

chardcloseI was just gathering material for the upcoming Advanced Focusing Course participants, a course that will focus on how to support real and lasting change within our clients. The personal stories from the latest focusing journal, the FOLIO are such inspiring examples of how focusing leads to transformation, I thought you might all be interested. Here is a link to FOLIO editor Paula Nowick’s dramatic story of how focusing helped her to come to terms with her son’s devastating addiction. The story illustrates well how sometimes when you can’t change a situation, the best thing to do is change how you are within it, and the the route to this kind of shift is not through things you might ordinarily try.

If you want to read more stories like this one, the entire issue is available for free on the Focusing Institute web site. Included are 47 personal stories of how focusing led to a major ‘aha’ moment.

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Jul 19, 12 Dreamwork

Why do we dream?

Theories abound, but no one is sure. We do know that everybody dreams, even animals, and that if we are deprived of the REM sleep we need for dreaming, we fare very poorly. (Rats deprived of REM sleep lose the ability to regulate body temperature and die!) So the sleep most often associated with dreaming is necessary for our bodies to function. And dreams are considered necessary as well by many — for emotional regulation, encoding of memory — whether we choose to work with our dreams or not. However, if we do delve more deeply into the fascinating world of our dreams and actively work with them, we are often rewarded.

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Introductory Focusing Courses Now Available

Jul 19, 10 Introductory Focusing Courses Now Available

Leslie Ellis will once again be offering her popular introductory course in the fundamentals of focusing. The next Introduction to Focusing takes place Oct. 1 and 2, 2012 in Vancouver.

There is also a slate of advanced courses for those who have taken the introductory workshop or who are proficient in focusing-oriented therapy. Topics covered include working with complex trauma, dreams and deepening your practice of focusing.

For more information, go to Learning Focusing.

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Depression…What You Can Do About It (plenty)

Jul 17, 10 Depression…What You Can Do About It (plenty)

Depression is a frustrating illness because it doesn’t always get better by itself. In fact, the symptoms that come with depression, such as low self esteem and lack of energy or motivation, are the very things that can make it both seem and get worse. And if you’re depressed, you’re not likely to be optimistic, so you may see taking any action as pointless. DO IT ANYWAY! YOU’LL FEEL BETTER FOR IT!

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