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A Short Guide for the Focusing 'Coach'

Chapter 6

This chapter was mainly written for professionals or those who intend to be so, of the wide domain of services to the souls and bodies of people. It is specially intended for those among them, who would like to become professional or semi-professional trainers in the General Sensate Focusing Technique. However, if you are a new or even an experienced focuser, a reader who has exercised steps and tactics of the previous chapter or only a curious reader, you can still profit from the reading of this chapter.

Though focusing training can be done by following this book alone, the company of a more experienced focuser or a professional one can help considerably. Their contribution is most valuable for one on his first steps to acquire the strange habits of attending systematically to the felt sensations of the body.

When the coach is himself a novice to the technique but is experienced in one of the care-giving vocations, he can still help a lot. The contributions he can provide in the first stages of training, and later, to advancement in the implementation of the new knowledge are many. Even if the other person himself is a novice to focusing, he can put to good use his general knowledge and experience in guiding, counseling, training etc. If the new coach is experienced in treating the emotional system of clients - physically or mentally - it would be easier for him and his trainees if he combined the old and the new knowledge.

The focusing technique does not render psychology obsolete, nor does it make professional psychologists and other professionals dealing with the emotional system redundant. There are many conventional professions, non-conventional ones (especially of the "alternative methods and treatments") and others where their professionalism is in doubt, which influence the trashy programs of the other, even if they do not know that they are doing so, or how they do it. Each has its own approach, techniques and purposes, and each has its own belief, theory, rationale and rationalizations in which their truth value is not a precondition to partial successes.


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There is still good use to be made of the professional knowledge and experience of all of these, even when a focuser can do things for himself or help others as a layman. The help of these experts can be carried out even when the professional's knowledge and practice are not up-to-date. The more orthodox professional and the less orthodox practitioner of the "alternative" treatments could both do their things better if they would only integrate the focusing approach and tactics with their older practice.

In this chapter, we will explain the most important ways in which the new focuser may be helped by others. Before introducing the guidelines and recommendations to the "pure focusing coach" (who does not have to be a professional or semi-professional) here are the essential recommendations for the various specialists.

I. General recommendations for professionals

  1. Do not try to sell to others a commodity you have never tried yourself. If the focusing approach or part of its technique appeals to you, try them first on yourself (with or without a coach). It is easier to teach someone something you know, even if the knowledge is slight. Even if you believe - like us - that the best way to learn is by teaching, it is still better and easier to do this after having had some practical experience. Even the most naive trainee will discern if your knowledge is merely theoretical.
  2. Do not feel obliged to implement more than is convenient for you or more than your specific role allows, permits or requires. Even if it does not seem to you as appropriate to explain to your client the rationale of the focusing or to advise him to practice it as a whole, there are still many options available.

    For instance, the reflexologist, the masseuse, the physiotherapist, the teacher of "gymnastics for health", and all those that are involved with the physical side or aspects of the body, can adhere to the old role, and only add some aspects of the focusing technique. For instance, one can content oneself with a suggestion given to the client to focus on specific bodily sensations of physical origin or on other related felt sensations, in specific instances, all through the sessions or even in between sessions. (Adhering to a level that parallels the practical side of the first few steps for the beginner, without any theoretical or other explanation.)

    As a professional you can integrate the directives of focusing into your old role and techniques, keeping them relatively intact without the need of the client to be wise to it. One can start with the systematic suggestions of elements of the focusing technique to those one treats. Highest on the list for those who apply physical treatments is the suggestion to concentrate on the feelings and sensations aroused in the relevant muscles or organs, at various points, during their sessions.

    This elementary level - with minor adaptations - is applicable to all the other professionals who deal with the mind. The psychiatrists, the psychologists, the social workers, various kinds of counselors, teachers, nurses, specialists of interpersonal relations... and all those who deal with shaping the "soul" of the individual. They could merely suggest to their clients (or patients) to pay close attention to their own felt sensations, aroused there and then during the session.

    An additional suggestion may be added by both kinds of professionals to the first one, without changing their noncommittal level of implementation of the focusing technique. The professional could suggest to his clients that they pay attention to the same focused or hazy felt sensations, of muscles, of organs or of other locations, first experienced within the treatment, outside it too. He could suggest doing this in specific situations or whenever they are felt in life generally.

Last Updated: 22 July 2014
Reviewed by Harry Croft, MD

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