Monthly Archives: April 2017


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Shifting Our Identity from One of Pain to One of Glory

By Annie Fisher, MSW, LCSW

Through focusing we discover a spaciousness inside that can hold difficult experiences and with continued practice, even an imperfect practice of staying with what wants our inner attention, we discover within the spaciousness, a sea full of long forgotten qualities ones such as the fluid energy of compassion and the tenderness of stillness. These aspects of ourselves, which are innumerable, are what makes our connections within and with others, intimate and healing. For most of us, qualities, ones such as deep love and natural courage, don’t register as familiar or could possibly have anything to do with us but focusing finds a way to awaken us back to our authentic nature. These disembodied qualities collectively begin to form our true identity. We then make the seismic shift from knowing and judging ourselves as someone who is hateful or jealous to identifying with this capacious field of awareness that includes feelings of hate or jealousy. Making the identity shift is a tall order for most of us but focusing is a practice and a process. Once we’ve experienced the possibility, we become hooked because freedom is attractive and feels like home.

And of course because we’ve developed a skill for being able to listen to difficult things within us from this larger place, we become able to listen to difficult things from people in our lives. We grow our awareness about who we are as someone who can hold so much more and not become fully identified with the reaction inside of us about what’s being said or happening to us. Eventually we may not even have the reaction at all when someone says or does something that has the potential to sting but until then it’s experienced more like a deep hurt that is being held by a generous ocean.  And the space within, that was previously taken up with a big reaction, is now available for relating and responding to ourselves and the people we’re listening to.

In focusing we don’t have to start out with a big open heart, thank God. We don’t even have to see ourselves as someone who is compassionate. We can just show up with a little curiosity, be as present as is available to us in the moment and focusing will take us in the direction we need to go.

Annie Fisher, MSW, LCSW
856.448.1856

 

 

Focusing, Part II

Annie Berosh, MSW, LSW

By Annie Fisher, MSW, LCSW

In part two of this writing we continue to look closely at the issue of resistance even when doing something we might normally enjoy:

Continuing with my life example from last month’s e-newsletter about wanting to get some writing done and feeling stuck, I continued to open to and listen to the “dug in feeling” in my body. I discovered that this stopped place inside is surprisingly tender and doesn’t care about creativity or my great ideas. I’m also surprised to hear it cares about relationship and as I listen more deeply, I hear it often feels left behind by me when I go running off with excitement into action. It tells me this with a mixed tone of resentment, hurt and sadness infused in its “voice.” It recalls how in the past I’ve immersed myself in projects for weeks and all the while this place inside of me feels unattended to, longs for connection and hopelessly waits for its turn. One might imagine a parallel situation occurring in life in which a parent spends long hours at work while the child yearns for attention from that parent.

Just like people in our lives who are asking us to grow, parts are always trying to contribute to our sense of wholeness by insisting that we pay attention to aspects of ourselves that we tend to deny, ignore or over-identify with. I hope it’s clear how this part was not trying to create trouble for me but trying to help me by creating resistance. Like putting its foot in the door that I was trying to exit, it was asking me to first pay attention and get connected so that I could show up in my activities as a more whole, creative and present being.  It was the quality of my receptivity to staying and listening that allowed this for kind of opening up to occur.

Focusing is different from inner child work in that there’s now a new bodily felt/lived experience of “bringing my inner child to work with me,” that through trust, patience  and relationship has unfolded naturally without having to figure anything out with the logical mind. Focusing teaches us that deep in this moment, what’s needed is available to and for us. Focusing at its highest is when we can apply these principles of trust to our daily lives.

Annie Fisher, MSW, LCSW

856.448.1856