Kevin shares a deep—and I want to say ‘unfolding’—insight into something unusual that his long-time focusing partner said to him, and how this statement opened up to him over a period of sitting-with-it. He’d fallen into the details, the talking-about. He’d lost the being-with.
Here’s what his partner said: Kevin, I need you to come back to me.
Over time, Kevin realized: This isn’t about my partner! And he explores, in his here-right-now-way, what was revealed to him. Yes, you guessed it: it’s about coming home to me again.
And then, he gently invites us to contemplate these words too—these words that, he tells us: have their own life, their own physical presence in me.
Kevin invites us, here, to join him in an exploration that covers some really revolutionary material that most of the world doesn’t entertain—that we can develop a relationship with our own bodily experiences. There’s a whole lot here, so feel free to pause this audio to really take it in, as he draws us forward through the many nuanced steps toward a relationship between our consciousness and our felt sense.
I was especially energized to hear his words: what emerges is not of your own making. Years of socialization make that difficult for me to take in. And another personal favorite: it’s almost as though the body waits for your connection…. ….almost as though it appreciates your attention. Even now, I have a sweet spark of surprise when I realize that a relationship is forming:
Here I am, and there that is. We are in relationship.
This intunement is the last one in the “Coming Home” series of intunements that is the simplest and most gentle guide to grounded presence. All that is needed is a desire to be with Kevin in grounded presence. It is also a transition to the next series of intunements that support a deep level of being with all that is present in our lives. Being able to pause is essential to being able to hold whatever comes. The pause allows these parts to find their own way home when they are ready.
Repeated use of this intunement can lead to the deeper sense of self that supports our ability to observe and hold, with equal regard, all our felt senses and body wisdom that emerge.
This intunement is especially suited to those of us who have learned to live our lives moving ahead at all cost without enough time for reflection or observation of what is there for us. This intunement can be bookmarked on your computer and/or mobile devices in order to be easily available whenever there is a need to pause with a guiding voice as support for us to connect to our own “Me Here Now.”
I love to discover the naturalness of Wholebody Focusing in life itself, including in art and music. I found something new listening to Billie Holiday’s version of Good Morning Heartache.
Focusing is based on the work of Gene Gendlin. He worked with Carl Rodgers to research why some people thrive in psychotherapy and others did not. Their award-winning research found that whether or not psychotherapy helped a person with their emotional issues was not related to the type of therapy or the skill of the therapist. It had mostly to do with the client’s innate ability to be aware of their emotional challenges in a meta-cognitive way. Focusing and Wholebody Focusing are practices that help people learn how to become more aware of their inner emotional life in a way that naturally helps one heal.
Good Morning, Heartache is a wonderful example of how as someone becomes aware and accepting of what is there emotionally, healing begins. In this song, Ms. Holiday’s voice guides us through her experience of heartache. She starts with wanting the heartache to “get lost” and cycles through what comes for her by being with these feelings. She ends with lightheartedly offering her heartache to “sit down” next to her. This song demonstrates an important practice in Focusing in which one can hold both the heartache and the not wanting the heartache with equal regard as a part of the healing process.
Today’s intunement helps us connect to another way of finding grounded presence through using our attention to our breath. Kevin guides us to being with this simple practice used for ages in so many healing modalities in a way that the experience of grounding itself becomes self-aware.
What is the quality of your breath? What comes for you as you are holding space for your breath? How does that help you be with what is there for you today?
Start your day with this short exploration and see what comes.
Are you in need of some lighthearted play? Here is an intunement that will move you into an inner-directed body experience without narrative or particular intention other than to experience movement that is generated by your body alone. Kevin narrates the experience of asking his body to stand from a sitting position merely by relying on its own body wisdom sense of standing.
We can be partners in this game. If we invite our bodies, they may want to share the same experience with Kevin, something that takes longer than our own ability to stand and has many nuances that one might not expect.
So ask you body to stand, allow all necessary movement to emerge and let go of any need to create meaning or narrative out the experience.
Holding Both with Equal Positive Regard is the essence of Wholebody Focusing. It is here that the most benefit will be experienced. Kevin explains how “holding both” can be supportive of your body’s sense of the next positive or negative event that you will be experiencing. He also shares his experience of being in grounded presence with the planned events happening for him soon and how his body responds to each event–with pleasure or anxiety.
While holding all that is there for him, Kevin asks his body which, among all these events, needs his attention most? At that point, he feels the expansion of his experience of himself and he can relax into that feeling. As the expansion grows, he also becomes aware of the resistance to that expansion. A part of him does not want to expand so quickly.
Kevin feels his hands massaging his thighs. The words come “You’re okay. You’ll be okay. It’s okay.” His hands have a function that is separate from his thoughts. Kevin holds onto that comfort he receives from the movement of his hands as anticipation resurfaces of an event that could possibly be uncomfortable.
His body is expanding into that spaciousness of being okay and he is aware that while the discussion may not be comfortable, there will be some space to accommodate that discomfort. He will be okay regardless of what comes.