with Eugene Gendlin & Ann Weiser Cornell
People sometimes ask Gene and Ann, “What do I do if I feel stuck? If nothing helps? If I’ve tried everything you suggest in your books, and still my life doesn’t move forward?” We know that Focusing should help us toward a flowing kind of action. But how?
New Ways to Go Forward with Focusing is a course created out of the new practices that Gene Gendlin had recently developed to help people get past stuck places. In this course, Gene and Ann explore four interrelated specific new ways in which Focusing can carry life forward. These are exciting new twists on the usual ways of approaching decisions, actions, therapy, meditation… and they can get us moving and expanding.
In the process, Gene and Ann go deeply into the idea that we are all part of “the Bigger System,” and this has exciting and inspiring implications for how we can move forward from being stuck in our lives. Witness the process unfold as Gene works one-on-one with participants from the live, recorded class. Listen in on the debriefing conversation that happens afterward where Gene talks about his choice points along the way and participants are able to ask questions about the process.
“I think that I’m a very small person, and I’m riding on a very large thing that goes down down down down… it goes down all the way to the felt sense and then it goes under that. The ‘I’ is the whole thing that goes all the way down and has the Bigger System over and under it…” -Gene in class 4
Digital Download Product (MP3s)
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What You’ll Learn:
1: Not Getting Caught Up
We try not to get caught up in emotions and stories. But in the usual way of not getting caught up we step back, get distance, get detached. That may be hard to do, and it may also put us out of touch with the richness and detail of the emotions and stories. With Focusing awareness, we can go “down” into the feeling and have the un-caught-up kind of attention there, in the body. We’ll demonstrate this, practice it together, and talk about why it helps.
2. “Let It Develop”
Often when we’re faced with a problem, especially one involving other people (and don’t they all?), we think we have to come up with a big complete idea of what to do, some action plan that will change everything. Or when we have a big project, something we want to do but have never done, we think we have to have the whole plan in advance. But actually, we don’t yet have to be the person who can handle it or do it. “Let it develop” suggests that we do something small, see what happens, and then know the next step. We’ll practice this, explore some examples, and talk about why something in us finds “let it develop” a hard concept to take on.
3. Having a Hard Decision Means Neither Way is Right
Being faced with a decision that is hard to make means that neither option is right. Trying to push one side, we’ll end up forcing something we’ll feel bad about. Gene and Ann demonstrate how to start with a hard decision and go to the underlying life energy, and then forward to a new option from there. We’ll practice this and talk about what it means.
4. Listening for Life-Forward Direction
Sometimes we can see what we need, but all we feel is that it is lacking. If we invite the body feeling that we would get from what we need if we had it, that will create a new context that can guide us there. We keep a place to hear from the hard thing, but we go on to ask: What would come in your body if that would be just right? We’ll demonstrate, discuss examples, and show how to give responses that point to and support this life energy, whenever it shows itself.
For each week there is a Focusing practice that you can do on your own or with a partner, and along with the audio course you receive a PDF of each week’s exercise.
Available as MP3s (CD set version not available). Includes supplemental reading list, provided digitally after purchase.
Total Length: 6 hours 18 minutes
File Size: 425.4 MB
Note: Audio files were recorded during an actual phone seminar and have been edited. Sound quality may vary.
About Digital Downloads
When you purchase the digital download of this audio course, you’ll receive an email after checkout with a link to download the MP3s, which you can then save to your computer. *Please Note: Each purchased digital copy is licensed to one individual for personal use only.
The Focusing and Thinking Series is a series of phone seminars offered by Gene Gendlin and Ann Weiser Cornell that explore the implications of Gene Gendlin’s Philosophy of the Implicit and the Focusing process to a broad range of topics including relationships, creativity, social change, psychotherapy, dreams, and thinking.
Ann Weiser Cornell was getting her PhD in Linguistics at the University of Chicago when she met and learned Focusing from Eugene Gendlin. In 1980, Gene invited Ann to assist with his Focusing workshops. This started her on a path to become a Focusing teacher, and in 1990, Ann became the first person to support herself full-time as a Focusing teacher. Today, Ann is internationally recognized as one of the leading innovators and theoreticians of Focusing. She is the author of The Power of Focusing, The Radical Acceptance of Everything and Focusing in Clinical Practice: The Essence of Change.
Eugene T. Gendlin was a groundbreaking philosopher and psychotherapist who has been honored 4 times by the American Psychological Association for his development of Experiential Psychotherapy. He received his Ph.D. in philosophy from the University of Chicago and taught there from 1963 to 1995. His book, Focusing, has sold over 500,000 copies and is in 17 languages. His other books include Let Your Body Interpret Your Dreams, Focusing-Oriented Psychotherapy, A Process Model, and Experiencing & the Creation of Meaning. He was also a warm brilliant man who lit up a room with the quality of his listening.