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THE RECORDINGS - Focusing Oriented Therapy Conference 2023

 Registration is closed for this event
PAST EVENT (November 2 - 5, 2023 - REGISTRATION FOR RECORDINGS REMAIN OPEN THROUGH JAN 15, 2024. RECORDINGS ACCESSIBLE THROUGH FEB 5, 2024. At this critical time in our history, many of us are sensing a need for action. How does Focusing-Oriented Therapy help us meet the challenges of NOW? What is needed for us to hold the uncertainty of our future? We hope this conference will encourage an exploration of this urgency, how we hold the uncertainty and find ways of moving forward. Recordings of the live conference will be available through February 5, 2024 La fresca urgencia del ahora y el poder transformador de la terapia orientada al Focusing. Traducción al español para la mayoría de las presentaciones


Registration for the Recordings will remain open through January 15, 2024

The Fresh Urgency of Now and the Transformational Power of Focusing-Oriented Therapy

November 2-5, 2023
(Recordings of the live conference will be available through February 5, 2024)

At this critical time in our history, many of us are sensing a need for action.  How does Focusing-Oriented Therapy help us meet the challenges of NOW? What is needed for us to hold the uncertainty of our future? We hope this conference will encourage an exploration of this urgency, how we hold the uncertainty and find ways of moving forward.









Joan Klagsbrun - Acknowledging the Dark and Embracing the Light:  Crossing Focusing and Positive Psychology in Psychotherapy
We live in challenging times, ones that can lead us-- and our clients--to experience increased anxiety and stress. Crossing Focusing with Positive Psychology can help clients move beyond their negativity bias, find more enjoyment in their lives, and discover greater resilience. 
Read more and bio


Akira Ikemi - Crossing with Animals and the Experiencing Model:  On the Freshly Emerging ‘Now’ that Changes ‘What Was’
“Crossing with Animals”, an exercise which I devised in order to highlight how ‘Experiencing’ works, will be demonstrated. I will then critique Gendlin’s Focusing-Oriented Psychotherapy on the grounds that the ‘relationship‘ which he held to be of primary importance is not clearly articulated.  Read more and bio


Mia Leijssen -  Portals of Living Forward in Times of Crisis
Focusing during difficult times and life-changing events makes a world of difference. A call into awakening can be nurtured and inspired by ancient wisdom of mystics and scientific findings about nature and the universe. Read more and bio



Lynn Preston - Evolutionary Conversation:  New Focusing Skills for Groups and Communities
We Focusing therapists continually explore the ideas and skills of facilitating change. We treasure the tiny steps of growth that come as we trust the process of emergence. Many of us have also come to understand the intricacies of the therapeutic relationship in greater depth. Read more and bio.



Isabel Adon and Beatrice Hyacinthe - Transforming Our Grief
This presentation will allow us to dive deeper into our grief spots and recognize the various levels and the root causes of our grief. We will explore the collective and intergenerational nature of grief. We will tap into our ancestral and body’s wisdom to move through wellness. Read bios



Dennis Windego - Anishinaabeg People’s Natural Healing Rites of Passage and The Felt Sense
Anishinaabeg people’s connection to land, elements, and medicines are universal to natural healing processes through rites of passage and the felt sense.  Participants will be introduced to Anishinaabeg teachings, ceremonies, and experiential exercises, and healing to Mino-Biimaadizewin (The Good Life). Read more and bio


Freda Blob - Creative Compassion: Building Relational Empathy through Expressive  Arts Focusing Activities
In this workshop you will be introduced to a practice enhancing a sense of  empathy stretching beyond personal preferences and limitations.
The practice allows exploration of multiple kinds of perceptions, feelings and body sensations within a safe framed setting. Doing the practice you learn to trust  your body to implicitly do relational work for you. Read more and bio


Greg Madison - Focusing-oriented Democracy
What would I really like the world to be like? How would people interact in that ideal world, how would we treat each other, what values would we express? If you imagine that, do you think that any of the political movements of today will get us there?

One of the most important things I want to offer is an approach that comes from the open space that you naturally are. This is different from trying to be compassionate, or trying to do good, or enforcing a set of rules or wanting to appear caring – those all begin with an agenda. Read more and bio

Carolyn Tongco - Self-Compassion Themed Focusing-Oriented Expressive Arts for Primary Caregivers of Pediatric Thalassemia Patients
Primary caregivers of pediatric thalassemia patients endure caregiving stress while fulfilling their sick children's needs. Self-compassion approaches and Focusing-Oriented Expressive Arts (FOAT®) have been used in various populations to help increase self-compassion and resilience. Integrating the works of Laury Rappaport’s Focusing-Oriented Expressive Arts (FOAT®) and Kristin Neff’s Self-Compassion approaches, a six-session Self-Compassion Themed Focusing-Oriented Expressive Arts (SC-FOAT) Program was developed to help address the stress of the primary caregivers. In this presentation, participants will also be able to try out SC-FOAT exercises for their self-care. Participants are invited to bring paper and writing or coloring materials for the workshop. Read more and bio

Biliana Dearly - Transforming Inner Criticism in the Process of FOT
One of the most painful and debilitating human experiences is the activation of the harsh self-criticising aspect. It can produce feelings of shame, deficiency, self-doubt, low self-esteem, lack of self-confidence, worthlessness, exhaustion and can be persistent. This presentation will acknowledge and highlight the helpful guidelines given by Gendlin, Cornell and others in working with the inner criticising process. It will address some complex situations when more is needed, such as working with “relentless” or severe inner criticism with contempt (abuse) and interpersonally enacted inner criticism. Read more and bio


Salvador Moreno-López - How the Music of Speech empowers communication/relationship in Focusing Oriented Psychotherapy: demonstration
(Spanish with simultaneous translation to English in a separate audio channel)

The Music of Speech: that is to say, the tones, timbres, volumes, pauses, rhythms and silences when speaking can be attended to and understood from the metaphor of the Music of Speech. Through various activities, the participants will be able to broaden their embodied awareness in relation to how the music of speech is present in psychotherapeutic dialogues, and to understand the important role that such music plays in experiential empathic understanding and in the precise symbolization of experiencing. Read more and bio


 Harriet Teeuw & Rene Veugelers - Down to earth!  A Dynamic Expressive process with children and teenagers
Working as an FOT with children and teenagers, is a dynamic expressive process, in which you need to be unconditionally present in the now; with your own process, with the interaction and with the FS of the client. We call this, listening in three directions. From this basic attitude and holding, something fresh will always unfold from an unknown deeper layer, through Emerging Body Language, in a metaphor, in symbolization or something else.  Read more and bio


Jim Iberg - Three phases of Focusing Often Seen in a One-hour Therapy Session
In this presentation, Jim will describe the three phases, talk about how they present, and take responses and questions from participants.
It is when a client/Focuser moves from the first phase to the second that their issue comes alive in their body, and the urgency of finding new and better ways to proceed is felt, and the potential to find these new ways is activated.
Jim finds that the most effective way to bring the client to the second phase is classical client centered listening. In the second phase, our knowledge of Focusing sharpens our ability to respond in facilitative ways. Read more and bio

Jan Winhall - Revolutionizing Trauma and Addiction Treatment with the Felt Sense  Polyvagal Model™ Jan Winhall M.S.W. F.O.T. 
Our current model of understanding addiction as a brain disease is failing. The Felt  Sense Polyvagal Model™ (FSPM) shifts the current pathologizing paradigm to a  strength-based approach. Through the lens of Polyvagal theory, addictive behaviors  are seen as the bodies adaptive attempt to regulate by acting as propellers that  facilitate neurophysiological shifts in our nervous system. Read more and bio


Serge Prengel - Sunflower Mind demonstration: The embodied & relational edge of Focusing-oriented therapy
This is a demonstration of working at the edge of Focusing: it involves working with the bodily processes that are underlying the felt sense. The name "Sunflower Mind" builds upon Gendlin's observation that we have "plant bodies." The metaphor highlights the physicality of the body's organizing movement, like a sunflower moving with the sun. In this demonstration, we will see how tracking the body's implicit movements allows us to enter the process in a deeper way. As we free up the natural unfolding of the organism's response, meaning emerges freshly, urgently, and leads to change from the inside out. Read more and bio

Lisa Banu -How to Appear in Dark Times 
Hannah Arendt and Eugene Gendlin on Making Space

Responding to the question, “How can designer’s (re)act in dark times?” editors Staszowski and  Tassinari, offer an insightful possibility linking individual experience and public action  suggesting,  Acting politically as well as acting through designing in these times means thus moving  in this space of possibilities, where one can experience a freedom and creativity that can  never happen in private. Read more and bio

Tete Brandam - The contribution of Focusing to the salutogenic model
(Spanish with simultaneous translation to English in a separate audio channel)

Positive opportunity towards health. The crucial role of FOT in the generation of tranquility and well-being. Its participation in client's moving forward. Read more and bio

Susan Lennox,  Julie Ramsey, Mary Anne Schleinich - Psychotherapy In This Time of Existential Threat: How Can FOTs Meet Today’s Challenges?

We are living in a time of great danger and uncertainty, affecting us in profound ways.  Climate change continues to cause upheaval and unknown challenges. Civil unrest, war and political polarization are global concerns. Questions abound about how we can work together to meet the urgency of now. Read more and bios



Laury Rappaport - Focusing-Oriented Expressive Arts Therapy (FOAT®): Overview and Demonstration
Focusing-Oriented Expressive Arts (FOAT®) Therapy integrates Eugene Gendlin’s Focusing with the expressive arts. Laury will present a brief overview of Focusing-Oriented Expressive Arts Therapy, along with a demonstration of a FOAT Check-in with a “volunteer client.” The FOAT Check-in is a core method in Focusing-Oriented Therapy (FOT) that offers the Focuser an option of using simple art materials (crayons, markers, string, stones, etc.), gesture, movement, or sound (as well as words) to express the felt sense. The demonstration will include a user-friendly approach of teaching the Focuser how simple art materials can be used by anyone. Read more and bio

Roshi Paul Genki Kahn - Focusing as a Zen Way of Being: Navigating HERE-NOW as the Unknowable and Indeterminate Pivot for Non-Linear Dynamic Systems Perspectives
Zen draws upon the philosophy of the syncretic Chinese Buddhist school, Huayen, considered by many scholars as the apogee of Buddhist theory. Huayen philosophy integrates Madhyamika deconstruction and Yogacara’s constructivist world-as-consciousness with tathagatagarbha and Buddha Nature theories. The dynamics described are interactive, co-creative, and inter-affective allowing infinite points of awareness among the one and many, differences and sameness all within a nondual unity. Read more and bio

Agnes Windram - Benefits of FOT and an experiential framework in the treatment of chronic eating disorders. A clinical case study
The presentation will focus on the case of a client in her thirties suffering from eating disorders since early childhood. After being in therapy for the last 20 years, she wanted to try a more experiential approach. After working together weekly using FOT for the last 6 months, she started to develop a new relationship to her body, feelings, senses, as well as creating new ways of interacting with significant others. Read more and bio

Mentxu Martín-Aragón and Josep Santacreu - Working with the “internal character” in deal with unwanted emotions
(Spanish with simultaneous translation to English in a separate audio channel)

From a wide experience in both Focusing training and psychotherapeutic work, we want to contribute some reflections related to the Focusing process, and how the body can help to guide us. We live in uncertain times, where anxiety and stress of our clients, as well as unwanted emotions are a challenge to manage in psychotherapy. Taking into account the fundamentals of the technique proposed by E. Gendlin, we will propose a work with the "parts" is of great importance. Read more and bio

Beilah Ross - Ancestors as Allies on the Path of Personal and Collective Liberation 
Just like people, ancestors can be complicated. We have ancestors whose legacies we’re inspired by, and those we recoil from. In this workshop, we will be using the knowing in our bodies to help us identify ancestors that can serve as allies in the work of creating more equity in our therapy rooms and in our communities.
We will also explore how claiming and including problematic ancestors in our lines, can move us from denial, shame, guilt and aversion, to acceptance and the resolve to seek more justice and healing for ourselves, our clients and our world. Read more and bio 

Aaffien de Vries - Finding ground in an unstable and frightening world
War, the threat of war, violence, natural pollution and disasters, earthquakes, flooding’s, cyclones, pandemics – so many threats. So much unsafety around us. And many people have also to deal with internal experienced unsafety. How can we survive and find meaning in our live in the center of so many threats of our existence? How can we deal with so much frightening circumstances? Read more and bio

Charlotte Howorth - The Doing in the Saying
Gene Gendlin was a psychotherapist and talked about how it is 'the doing in the saying’ that is so important in FOT.  Central to his philosophy of the implicit is that we are interaction, what we are made of is interaction.  This means that we as therapists need to be ‘the interaction that makes it better'.  In this respect FOT is relational at is core.
In this presentation Charlotte will talk about Gene’s concept of interaction first, and how as FOT therapists, more importantly than getting our clients to focus, we need to be focusing ourselves into what the interaction is needing. Read more and bio


Theme:  The Urgency of Making Focusing-Oriented Therapy More Findable
(Spanish with simultaneous translation to English in a separate audio channel)





There is growing interest in experiential, embodied, somatic, relational, body centered, spiritual, mindful, and process-oriented therapies. How can we distinguish Focusing-Oriented Therapy from other modalities, help therapists find training programs, and help clients find Focusing-Oriented Therapists? We are seeking panelists who will offer concrete ideas about how FOT’s and TIFI can work together to make Focusing-Oriented Therapy better known and findable. Panelist Bios

Theme: The Urgency of Widening Our Lens of Inclusivity




How do we see our role(s) as agents of change in therapy, community, and wider systems? Do we have a role in change beyond our therapeutic work? Can the Philosophy of the Implicit and Focusing-Oriented Therapy widen our lens and practice of inclusivity, diversity, and equity? If we are interaction with everything, are we not ethically responsible to reflect on how we can be more inclusive of all living beings and systems? Panelist bios

Theme: The Urgency of Teaching the Essence of FOT to a New Generation



What is needed to preserve the uniqueness of Focusing-Oriented Therapy and pass it along to a new generation? How can we share how we teach, mentor, supervise and promote FOT? While we embrace a diversity of approaches, can we also encourage a community of mutual support and development? What needs to occur, so we preserve the wisdom of our elders, bring along new teachers and therapists, and create an “all flourishing is mutual” approach to sharing curriculum, teaching, and learning. Panelist Bios

English with Spanish translation for all (or nearly all depending on translator scheduling) presentations. 

To apply or ask questions email [email protected]
Living room co-hosts - join a committee member holding the space for informal exchange
Administrative help
Zoom host back-up to support main zoom host (minimum 2 workshops)
Bilingual (Spanish/English) written or spoken support based on individual experience


Bios: Jeffrey Morrison -US  ~   Natalia Calviño -Argentina  ~  Rachel Hendron -UK  ~  Agathi Lakioti -Greece  ~  Randi Love -US  ~  Julie Ramsey -US


January 15th, 2024 from 12:00 AM to 11:59 PM
Event Fee(s)
Conference Price $425.00
Modified Price $325.00
Lowest price $150.00
Additional Information
Location Online
Topic Beginners, FOT, Other, The Focusing Institute (TIFI) Events
Language of Instruction English, Spanish
Event Listing Date Information November 2 - 5, 2023
Timezone Eastern NY Time