“A felt sense is not a mental experience but a physical one. Physical. A bodily awareness of a situation or person or event.
An internal aura that encompasses everything you feel and know about a given subject at a given time—encompasses it and communicates it to you all at once, rather than detail by detail.”
~ Eugene Gendlin, creator of Focusing
COMING SOON! Focusing-Oriented Psychotherapy comes from the pioneering work of American philosopher and psychologist Eugene Gendlin who studied what helped people improve in psychotherapy. He and his colleagues found that it was what the client was doing internally; clients who were regularly checking inside themselves for a whole bodily felt sense of their situation were noticing benefits in their overall wellbeing.
In our busy lives, we are not always in touch with what we are experiencing internally and often no one takes the time to really listen to us. In fact, often we don't even listen to ourselves at a deep level. In Focusing-Oriented Psychotherapy the therapist knows how to listen in a way that will help you find your own intricate and nuanced bodily sensed experience. When you feel the therapist's sincere intention to understand, without judgment and evaluation, your attention turns inside to a level of awareness called the felt sense. In a way, your body speaks and we both listen to it.
You might think I am talking about emotions here, but a felt sense is actually not an emotion. The felt sense of a situation or problem, when it first forms, is typically vague and unclear. You can sense that something is there, but it is hard to put it into exact words. The felt sense is holistic in nature and contains within it much more than we can easily think or emotionally know about our situation. As we spend time with your felt-sense, new and clearer meanings will emerge. I would call it an inner wisdom - something that speaks to us and reveals certain truths. I would also liken it to a "numinous" experience - like when you see a piece of art or a wonder of nature which speaks to you and you "get it" through all of your senses.
The felt sense, on its own, brings the exact word, image, memory, understanding, new idea, or action step that is needed to solve whatever issue or problem is ailing you. The physical body, in response, will experience some "processing"; easing or release of tension as it registers the "rightness" of what comes from the felt sense. This easing of tension is what tells us that we have made contact with this deeper level of awareness and that we are on the right path. It is a means of processing the experiences we carry on a somatic-sensory level.
I wish to acknowledge that I live, play and conduct my work on the stolen ancestral lands of the xʷməθkwəy̓əm (Musqueam), Skwxwú7mesh (Squamish), Səl̓ílwətaʔ/Selilwitulh (Tsleil-Waututh) and Shíshálh First Nations.
I welcome your questions and offer free 15 minute meet & greets to see if we're a good fit!