Learning Community for Mastery in Guiding Change

What does it mean to GUIDE someone else in ways that bring life forward movement?

In our Focusing partnerships, we learn and practice relational skills that support being a Companion to someone else on their inner journey. Professional guiding is different from being a Focusing partner. It is fun and sometimes bewildering because each person we encounter is unique!

Maybe you are a coach, therapist, social worker, yoga therapist, spiritual director, health professional, body worker, wellness enthusiast or educator…

Essentially, you have, or want, a vocational path that brings you together one-to-one with others in situations of facilitating change for this other person .

You would like to help them access their natural Focusing skills in these moments.

Or maybe you have access to groups that you would like to explore these relational and essence of change skills with.

Possibly you recognize some of the above as the direction you are heading toward…

WELCOME! We’d love for you to join us here!

“The Learning Community was the perfect next step for me after completing Level 4. The community is so warm and welcoming and was supportive for me to learn and grow in my personal and professional practice. Sandy holds such a safe and open space to explore what feels alive for us. This paved the way for very rich discussions as a group. I really enjoyed learning from the guest teachers that Sandy brought in, it expanded my horizons and opened the doors to different modalities and practices. I would highly recommend the Learning Community to anyone looking to take the next steps in their Focusing journey.”
~ Ash Hall, Inner Wisdom Yoga Instructor

Beginning in 2021, we are building an Ongoing Learning Community for Mastery in Guiding Change.

IMPORTANT NOTE: If your goal is to offer and market ‘Guided Focusing Sessions’ to clients as a Certified Focusing Professional or to teach Focusing as a Focusing trainer, this is a potential route to certification. You are also welcome here if you are already certified or if you just want to use these skills with clients you already have.

Although not everyone in this community is geared toward Focusing certification, we understand and believe in the transformational power of our one-to-one relationships. The Learning Community for Mastery in Guiding Change course has a pre-requisite of at least one year of skill training classes and regular partnership practice. This could be via my Creating Space for Lasting Change Levels 1-4 or equivalent classes or possibly a previous mentor relationship with me. We are excited about the variety of backgrounds coming together here and if you have trained in another Focusing modality other than Inner Relationship Focusing, let’s chat to be sure this will be a match for you. The first 10 classes will be grounding in guiding from an Inner Relationship Focusing view as a common experience and language from which to share and grow.

Grounded in our own experience as Focuser and Companion, we will: 

– Utilize Gendlin’s philosophy to expand our understanding of ourselves and others as interaction first.

– Empower confidence to TRUST Presence calisthenics. The Focusing process is resilient. Our body is on our side here.

– Learn more about how to tell where we are in our brain and the myriad of ways we can exercise our neural system toward a sense of flexibility, integration and resilience.

– Expand our ability to tell when someone would be open to Focusing invitations.

– Learn and/or deepen the practice of landing in the “we-space”, and finding a fresh rhythm from there, together. 

– Explore saying “yes” with equanimity to all that is here in our own and our client/friend/partner’s experience. Everything is welcome as it arrives and given a space to feel safe for however it is now.  

– Develop experience in how mindfulness practices can help identify and transform core emotional patterns that create anxiety/depression or other interpersonal conflicts.

– Explore the power of silence and our speech as music. How does sound contribute to a healing environment?

– Explore the benefits of metaprocessing, pausing to reflect and highlight anything new as soon as it arises in small ways.

– Deepen the practice of letting the Focuser’s words “land” in your body, then let that place speak naturally, rather than remembering or conjuring things to say back.

– Explore why sometimes listening to others becomes difficult and what we can do.

– Explore the subtle difference between “putting your own stuff away to be fully there for the other person” and the idea of “being there, just as you are, however you are” – i.e. Gendlin’s being a human being with another human being.

-Trust that our client has the capacity to heal and helping them see their choice points.

– Continue to gather and grow as a learning community. We can return here to make connections, celebrate our successes, ask questions, share challenging experiences and learn new modalities emerging.

Learning Community for Mastery in Guiding Change

Learning Community begins as a year long program meeting twenty times for 1.5 hours and continues with regular 1.5 hr meetings as long as you wish to join us.

There will be reading between classes. Our first ten classes, we will be utilizing the deep wisdom in Ann Weiser Cornell’s curriculum Working with Focusing Clients One to One.

The classes will be a mix of discussing new content, demos and experiential exploration via small groups or paired practice. 

Maintaining a Focusing partnership outside of class during this time will be valuable and supportive of what you take from our time together. If you are currently training for certification, an active partnership is required.

I will bring guests into class for us to practice with. You are encouraged to find practice clients. This will happen at the timing that feels ripe for you. These might be people you already work with and maybe not. Practice clients can be new to Focusing or have had minimal exposure. Sessions you offer can be 20-50 min. Our classes will often have small group time where we share our client practice experiences with each other.

Four of our classes will be led by Guest Teaching Mentors who have experience facilitating change one to one with clients. I am excited about the diversity they will bring to our learning.

I will start a new group every fall, alternating Sunday daytime or Thursday evenings Eastern or New York USA time zone. Please plan to attend all sessions for the full time. Missing up to four classes during the first year is acceptable. Since we will often be in small groups, there may not be much that I can record for you. You are welcome to drop in and make up classes you miss with a later group.

The course fee will include a digital copy of Ann Weiser Cornell’s curriculum she uses with Certification students. We will be working just with her Teachers Manual Part One related to Guiding One to One.

There will be a limit on class size of 10 – 12 participants. Please register early if the dates/times work well for you. If these fees are difficult for you, I do offer options to pay over time. Please reach out and contact me about your situation.

Learning Community for Mastery in Guiding Change Online Class – 2022-23 Sunday mornings

20 Sundays – Starting September 11, 2022
11 am-12:30 pm Eastern New York Time, 10-11:30 am CT, 9-10:30 am MT, 8-9:30 am PT
 or your equivalent

Sept 11, Sept 25, Oct 9, Oct 23, Nov 6, Nov 20, Jan 8, Jan 22, Feb 5, Feb 19,

March 5, March 19, April 2, April 16, May 7, May 21, June 4, June 18, July 2, July 16

Beginning in March, the first Sundays follow our typical class structure. The third Sundays are small group dyad or triad Focusing & follow-up around this month’s topic. Once I get you going, I will not generally be present for the 3rd Sundays March – July.

Prerequisite: Creating Space For Lasting Change Levels 1-4 OR 1+ years equivalent Focusing skills training

Course Fee: $365

**Note Daylight savings time changes November 6 for me. This class will shift backward 1 hour for that day and those after. If you are not on the same time shift, take this into account. In spring, time will shift forward 1 hour on March 12, 2023.

Learning Community for Mastery in Guiding Change Online Class – 2022-23 Thursday evenings

20 Thursdays – Starting September 8, 2022
7:30 – 9 pm Eastern New York Time, 6:30 – 8 pm CT, 5:30 – 7 pm MT, 4:30 – 6 pm PT
 or your equivalent

Sept 8, Sept 22, Oct 6, Oct 20, Nov 3, Nov 17, Jan 12, Jan 26, Feb 9, Feb 23

March 9, March 23, April 6, April 20, May 4, May 18, June 1, June 15, June 29, July 13

Beginning in March, the first Thursdays follow our typical class structure. Every other Thursday will be small group dyad or triad Focusing & follow-up around this month’s topic. Once I get you going, I will not generally be present for the small group Thursdays March – July.

Prerequisite: Creating Space For Lasting Change Levels 1-4 OR 1+ years of equivalent Focusing skills training

Course Fee: $365

**Note Daylight savings time changes November 6 for me. This class will shift backward 1 hour for that day and those after. If you are not on the same time shift, take this into account. In spring, time will shift forward 1 hour on March 12, 2023.

Additional Learning Community Teaching Mentors

David Bell, LCSW-C is a clinical social worker in the central Maryland region. David specializes in experiential approaches to psychotherapy which means to bring the focus, goal or edge of growth into the here and now. He will share his favorite practices for metaprocessing, where we help our client develop an eye for the small steps of fresh air in life processes. Later in the second year, David may also introduce us to two powerful neuro-therapy practices: Brainspotting and Eye Movement Integration.

Helene Brenner, Ph.D is a Psychologist, Focusing Orientated Therapist & Author of I Know I’m in There Somewhere: A Woman’s Guide to Finding Her Inner Voice and Living a Life of Authenticity. Helene has developed an Inner Voice App. These brief step-by-step Innercizes help people learn self-compassion, reduce anxiety and to trust what they know, feel and want inside.

Beth Mahler, LCSW, FOT is a Certifying Coordinator for The International Focusing Institute, and a Licensed Clinical Social Worker in Private Practice providing Individual, Marital and Family Therapy both in person (NJ, USA) and by Telehealth services via Zoom platform.  Through her own intuitive and curious engagement with contemplative and therapeutic practices, the supportive, engaging process of Change, Healing, and Growth potential has energized her work and life.

Peter Strong, PhD is a Professional Psychotherapist, Spiritual Teacher and Author, based in Boulder, Colorado. Peter developed a system of psychotherapy called Mindfulness Therapy for healing the root cause of Anxiety, Panic Attacks, OCD, Depression, PTSD and Emotional Suffering.

Ongoing Learning Community Members

Once we have completed the first year course, we are officially members of this Learning Community.

We can choose to stay involved in regular gatherings by contributing annual dues. During years that you are training for certification, there is a $195 annual dues to participate. There is a $75 annual dues fee to stay involved whenever you are not actively training for certification. Each time you pay dues, you will also be filling out a survey of your interests and goals in being a member of the community. The dues will contribute toward hiring guest teachers of interest to the group involved at the time.

The remainder of our schedule will be determined by current active members. We will use a google calendar where all members are invited to fill slots of 45 min. Half of most classes will be a small group time and half will be a presentation opportunity for you all to bring a client video or practice teaching something you’ve learned/explored outside of our class. What we do each year will vary with the amount we collect in dues and the interests of the particular group planning to be active for this period.

*My general goal here is to have a place to land for community support and continued learning related to facilitating change one to one. You may wish to repeat and thus drop in on first year classes for the next group. This will always be an option for no additional fee than annual ongoing dues. Do this by letting me know your interest. You will get invited to a google calendar where we can keep the ongoing dates organized once you have paid annual dues.

Ongoing Learning Community Dates

These five Sundays from 11 am – 12:30pm get us started for 2022

Jan 9, Feb 6, March 6, May 1, June 5

Beginning in fall of 2022, our ongoing dates will meet on both Thursdays 7:30 – 9 pm ET or Sundays 11 am-12:30 pm ET.

Thursdays: Sept 15, Oct 13, Nov 10, Jan 19, Feb 16, March 16, May 11, June 8

Sundays: Sept 18, Oct 16, Nov 13, Jan 15, Feb 12, March 12, May 14, June 11

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Learning Community for Mastery in Guiding Change – First year

Learn 1:1 Relational Focusing Skills to facilitate change for clients or communities you serve. This course serves as group support for individuals who wish to pursue certification as a Focusing Professional, Guide or Trainer. This course meets 1.5 hours every other week for 10 months starting in September each year (skipping Dec and Aug).

$365.00

Ongoing Learning Community Certification Training

This is an annual dues for years beyond the first where you are actively training for certification. This is due sometime during the month of August to help us budget for speakers and it can be paid retroactively at any time.

$195.00

On Going Learning Community General Member

This is an annual dues for any years beyond the first where you are not currently in training for certification. This is due sometime during the month of August to help us budget for speakers and it can be paid retroactively at any time.

$75.00

*DISCLAIMER

This site does not provide medical or any other health care or fitness advice, diagnosis, or treatment. The site and its services are for informational purposes only and are not a substitute for professional medical or mental health advice, examination, diagnosis, or treatment.