Global Forum


Here are the announcements that got made at the end of the conference - or that wanted to be made but we ran out of time for them! For more information on any of the topics, please contact the person who wrote the announcement directly.

Using social media to bring Focusing to the wider world

Sarah Sacks

Part of our role as focusing practitioners is to help share the benefits of Focusing beyond the Focusing community. The language of the day is changing quickly, and most recently it has become a world of quick visual bites transferred over social media. This video is a demonstration of what is possible when we bring these two incredible worlds of Focusing and social media together. Feel free to use this video as you see fit. Please note, if you would like to share this video in a language other than English, please submit your translation for review via the YouTube ‘Community Contributions’ tab.

www.thegrovecounselling.com/blog/2016/7/21/reconnecting-to-life-with-wholebody-focusing
Existential Well-being Counselling MOOC

Mia Leijssen

A MOOC is a ‘massive open online course’, and this one is on Existential Well-being Counselling: a person-centred experiential approach:

www.edx.org/course/existential-well-being-counseling-person-kuleuvenx-ewbcx

The emphasis is on exploring existential challenges and developing strengths to enhance well-being and meaning in life. And on developing therapeutic attitudes and counselling skills based on person-centred and experiential therapy.

We are convinced that our course can be beneficial for anybody who cares about well-being and meaningful living.

This course has particular value for counsellors and therapists who want to deepen their therapeutic approach and explore an existential, a person-centred and an experiential perspective.

We will bring complex skills within your reach by means of simple exercises. Through examples and video-demonstrations we will illustrate how you can apply our approach in your personal life and in a variety of helping contexts.

This course is taught by instructors with decades of experience in the field. You can follow your own rhythm in studying and practicing what is offered in each section.

This course is free of charge.

We do offer the possibility of receiving a certificate. You can earn it by passing all the assessments. The price of the certificate is US$49.
European Focusing Association (EFA)

Fiona Parr, Hejo Feuerstein, Judy Moore & Pavlos Zaragonis

We were delighted to announce the launch of the European Focusing Association at the Cambridge conference.

EFA is a European network for Focusers, Focusing professionals and Focusing practitioners who wish to develop Focusing and the Experiential Approach through collaboration, openness and mutual support.

The Association embraces diversity and multiplicity. All members share the common ground of Focusing. It does not favour any particular understanding of Focusing.

The aim of EFA is to provide a European-wide network for those Focusers and Focusing Professionals engaged in research and practice who:

· Have a commitment to the primary importance of the philosophy of Focusing, its attitude and ethics.

· Recognise the centrality of the ‘felt sense’ in their practice.

· Embody in their work those Focusing attitudes as first postulated by Eugene Gendlin.

· Have an openness to the future development of Focusing in the light of research and evolving practice.

The goals of EFA include:

· To promote continuing dialogue and good practice between the European Focusers and Focusing Professionals.

· To be a network for exploring different ways of teaching, researching and using Focusing.

· To provide ongoing support and professional development opportunities to individuals trained in Focusing and to European local and national Focusing organisations.

· To develop training programmes that are appropriate to the multi-cultural and multi-lingual European context.

We invite you to join us in this collaborative venture. Please send us an email to get the full text of the Vision Statement, and to join.

Fiona Parr (UK) fiona@fionaparr-focusing.co.uk

Hejo Feuerstein (Germany) h.feuerstein@focusing.de

Judy Moore (UK) moore.judy@hotmail.com

Pavlos Zaragonis (Greece) pavloszar@yahoo.com
Community Focusing programme in El Salvador

Beatrice Blake

In Cambridge I showed photos of the community Focusing programme in El Salvador with quotes from participants:

www.possibility-space.com/community-wellness-focusing/
Nonviolent Communication as a doorway to Focusing

Beatrice Blake

Teaching Nonviolent Communication can put people in Level 4 or 5 of the Experiencing scale, thus helping to create the conditions conducive to felt-sensing. This can be useful for people who are not used to introspection.

www.possibility-space.com/nonviolent-communication-as-a-doorway-to-focusing/

The future of the Focusing community

Marcella Calabi

Good stuff, bad stuff, an appeal, and an invitation: about the future of the Focusing community…

Good stuff: the fabulous enrichment of Focusing by the second- and third-generation thinkers who bring us particular modalities such as Inner Relationship, Domain, Wholebody Relational, etc., each with its own priorities, structures, and jargons.

Bad stuff, namely things we risk: (1) …that we could fail to appreciate “in each modality, what is Focusing and what is particular?” - in order to spread Focusing effectively, we need to be clear about what it is. (2) …that relationships in the Focusing community could be derailed when people encounter confusingly foreign ways of Focusing. (3) …worse, that the community could splinter over who is doing it ‘right’. (4) …or perhaps only that the community could wander apart, the way adult siblings see less and less of each other when their parents are gone and they no longer gather for holidays.

Appeal: In fact, it is utterly common, human and normal for these things to happen, as seen in other communities (academic, religious) which start with a single concept or theme and then develop. Therefore it takes consciousness and commitment to prevent such losses. Can we please do this?

Invitation: I have personally committed to cross-training in as many of the modalities as I can, so that I can articulate commonalities, translate between jargons and help keep pathways open. If you are interested in connecting with me about this, I’m at mc@focusingchoices.com

Thanks.
Experiencing well-being in-place

Ram Eisenberg

Experiencing Well-Being In-Place

This is a call and invitation to the international Focusing Community to take part in a fun way in a pioneering Focusing research on the experience of well-being in place. Based on the observation that experiencing well-being is universal and deeply connected to the environments we're in, this study is intended to explore this universality by collecting cross-cultural descriptions of experiencing natural, urban and country settings.

Any focuser at any level can participate. The protocol is simple, a lot of fun, and a great Focusing exercise; like going on a polar expedition right outside one's doorstep.

Focusing teachers in particular may find it useful as an exercise in one of their classes: a Focusing partnership goes outdoors, alternating roles, looking for a place ‘that feels right’ and documenting each other's session. The experience of Focusing both ‘inwards’ and ‘outwards’ at the same time is very rich, and the simultaneous or post-focusing writing exercise provides a way of deepening the learning experience, and an introduction to the meticulousness of Focusing in a TAE way.

This is also an open invitation to any likeminded focusers interested to explore the subject of sensing well-being or ‘rightness’ in place, to read the abstract of ‘The Goodness Feeling in Nature’ presented at the conference, and to collaborate in research, correspondence, or any other way that presents itself.

I'll be delighted to receive any thoughts and responses: ram@rameisenberg.com

A detailed protocol of the exercise is available HERE.
Focusing Initiatives International

Pat Omidian & Melinda Darer

Focusing Initiatives International (www.focusinginternational.org) is a new kind of organisation. Community wellness is our mission, and our values are collaboration, mutual respect, and creating a culture of kindness. We are non-hierarchical - everyone who works with us is part of our team. Our approach is grounded in the philosophy and experience of Community Wellness Focusing. We promote social change by supporting people and communities as they move towards wellness, seek inner healing, and discover creative solutions to local problems. This work is based on a deep vision of how human beings thrive when they are physically and emotionally safe, free to secure their needs and shape their communities in ways that hold meaning and significance for them.

In less than three years of existence, we have had programmes and projects in Belgium, Italy, Japan, Liberia, Mexico, Pakistan, and the United States.

www.focusinginternational.org
Online video classes to make Focusing more accessible

Ruth Hirsch

The internet is not only a tool for sharing information. It also offers a way for us to listen deeply to each other and to ourselves. To learn and to teach Focusing. To practice the art of embodiment, and to share this experience with someone who lives in a different continent, time zone, culture.

Through TIFI sponsored and private classes, Focusers from many, many areas that don’t yet have Focusing trainers have joined together to learn Focusing. Many have continued to Focus together for years afterwards.

Asked whether it really works to learn and practice Focusing online, I answer that as for everything, there are pros and cons. While there is much to be said for in-person teaching, there are many advantages to online classes as well. Some of these are cost – no travel expenses or time needed to commute to classes; safety and convenience – there is much to be said for being able to learn and practice Focusing from the comfort of one’s home or office - and, as has happened, from the airport while waiting for a flight, or a café when one’s rural office internet went down during a snow storm; and the substantial benefit of being able to share a learning and practice environment with others from very different backgrounds and cultures. For example, how likely would it be for a psychotherapist in rural Thailand to learn Focusing with an executive coach in Switzerland and a philosopher in rural Indiana?

For more information about classes or about online teaching, please be in touch.

www.ruthhirsch.com

www.focusing.org/fb

www.focusing.org/aft

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