Focusing Tip #811 – “There are no enemies inside.”
What is Inner Relationship Focusing and where did it come from? Read on…
Fifty years ago, in the fall of 1972, I met Eugene Gendlin and began a lifelong practice of Focusing. At that time, I was so unaware of my feelings that it was easier for me to tell how other people felt than how I felt. Not surprisingly, my emotional life was a mess. I was filled with impulses, longings, addictions, and blocks. Immediately, Focusing began to help.
At first, Focusing was just something my friends and I did with each other. Something that saved my life. But I didn’t think of it as a possible profession.
Fast forward 10 years, and I was helping Gene Gendlin teach Focusing workshops. A few years later, I was a Focusing teacher myself, part of a growing worldwide movement.
Then I began to change what Gene had taught me. My colleague Barbara McGavin and I started to emphasize “inner relationship” in Focusing, helping people have an inner relationship of acceptance, allowing, compassion, and empathy while Focusing and in their lives. And we saw the positive changes deepen and multiply.
Barbara and I started using Inner Relationship Focusing with our most challenging life issues, and experienced remarkable transformation.
The most important thing we learned?
There are no enemies inside you. Everything in you is trying to save your life.
Working with hundreds and hundreds of people over the last 40 years, we’ve found no exceptions to this. What seems to be something in us that’s self-destructive or trying to hurt us or damage us always turns out to be something that—in a way that’s perhaps not very successful—is trying to protect us or save us. And this can shift.
Do you want to hear more of my story of developing Inner Relationship Focusing? I’ve just been interviewed by Larry Letich on my life with Focusing! You can watch the interview or read the transcript here.
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