Focusing Tip #399 – Is it OK to get quick images while Focusing?

Focusing Tip #399 – Is it OK to get quick images while Focusing?
October 8, 2013 Ann Weiser Cornell

“My images change quickly, almost too quickly to describe.”

A Reader writes:
I get a lot of images when I’m Focusing. They change quickly, often too quickly for me to describe to my Focusing partner. And if I do describe an image, it’s already changing by the time my Focusing partner says it back to me…so I start to feel like the reflection is holding me back.

Is it OK to get images while Focusing? (My partners don’t seem to get as many as I do…) And is there a way that images work differently than words?

Dear Reader,
Thanks for this interesting question! First: Yes! It is OK to get images when Focusing, and in fact for a significant number of people, images are the way that Focusing occurs…rather than with body descriptions like “tight” or “heavy.”

Even for people who do get images, there are so many different ways that images can come. For some, images come quickly and change readily as you describe, almost like a story is unfolding. For others, the image stays still or nearly still until there is a felt change in the body.

People who get images quickly might want to say so to a Focusing partner before the session starts. Like this: “I typically get lots of images and I don’t need you to say any of them back until I pause for a while. If things are still changing, just let me go on.”

“Slower” images are easier to feel in the body, and in fact they often come as body-located experiences, as in “I’m seeing a tiny shy mouse in the left side of my belly.” “Faster” images are less likely to be experienced as “in” the body. In my view these are both legitimate ways to do Focusing.

The only thing I would say is that if people who get “faster” images are feeling some doubt about whether they are making the images up, or whether real change is occurring, they might want to experiment with inviting slower, more body-located images.

But if it’s all going well, you can just trust and let the process lead the way!

A great new article on images

There is a fascinating new article on the Focusing Institute website, by Galia Porat and Liora Bar-Natan, about their new concept of the “uniting image.” This is an image that comes later in the session and unifies the felt sense and the sense of a step moving forward.

I think anyone interested in images and Focusing would enjoy this article!

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