Joel Brodsky was the webmaster for The International Focusing Institute from 2019 through 2023. Ruth Hirsch recently spoke with him to learn a little about his time with TIFI. Their conversation follows.
Ruth Hirsch: How did you come to work with The International Focusing Institute?
Joel Brodsky: I was looking to supplement my work. I’d been working in IT [Information Technology] for 30+ years, and had moved into working as a consultant. I was looking for projects that utilized my skillset and were meaningful to me. My previous experience was working as a software developer for Microsoft.
RH: How was it for you working with TIFI?
JB: I really enjoyed it, specifically the people that I interacted with. Prior to responding to the TIFI ad looking for help, I wasn’t aware of Eugene Gendlin and his work. It spoke to me and perked my interest. It was wonderful to be exposed to so much of the content, some of which I incorporated into my life.
RH: Could you say a bit more about the work that you did with TIFI?
JB: The initial task was to help with the transition to a new website and to stabilize the workflow. Once things were stabilized and working properly and the new website was taken live, I transitioned to being responsible for oversight of the website and the role of webmaster.
RH: What is it you most liked about Focusing?
JB: What really spoke to me was the concept of pausing to clear a space; learning how to pause and listen to my inside voice. It spoke to me and made sense to me. I incorporated it into my day-to-day life.
RH: What aspects of your work with the Focusing Institute did you most enjoy?
JB: I like solving problems in the most efficient manner, which applied specifically during the transition to the new website. What motivated me post-transition was feeling that I was supporting something that was very positive. I believed in, and still believe in, their goals - Focusing improves people’s lives.
RH: If you wouldn’t mind sharing, what have you been doing recently?
JB: My wife and I have been transitioning into a new stage of our lives where we are not working as much. We have been living in Israel for the past 18 years, with frequent trips to New York to visit my son's family. My wife and I practice yoga several days a week, enjoy traveling, hiking and spending time with our grandchildren who live nearby.
RH: It was nice getting to know you a bit. Thank you very much for being willing to talk to me and to share your thoughts with others.
JB: Thank you. It’s very nice that you and the Institute are doing this, it is very much appreciated!
Based in Jerusalem, Israel, Ruth Hirsch MSW, MPH, CMT is a Focusing-Oriented Therapist and Trainer. Besides teaching all levels of Focusing and specialized workshops on Healing the Inner Critic and Conscious Aging with Focusing, she offers one-on-one Guided Focusing Sessions and Focusing-Oriented Therapy worldwide in-person and on Zoom.