IFEF France

What is Focusing ?

Focusing is a psycho-bodily approach that takes into account the whole person beyond the body-mind split. It is based on a precise, efficient and direct process that does not stop at analysis and logical or interpretative deductions but draws support on the experiential level.

An Approach Entered around People listening to the body

Focusing was initiated and developed by Eugene Gendlin (1926-2017), close associate of Carl Rogers (1902-1987). Gendlin has been awarded 5 times for this work by the American Psychological Association (APA).

Focusing is listening to a particular bodily sensation (called “felt sense”) which is neither a mere physical sensation nor a pure emotion. It is more like an impression that is often vague and fuzzy at first, felt in the body. This impression carries an implicit meaning that needs to be listened to and heard in order to be unfolded and made aware.

The focusing process takes place in several stages until the transformation and revelation of the message that seeks to be understood. He invites us to listen to our bodily sense “here and now” in an attitude of welcome and non-judgment, far from any analysis or interpretation. This open attention without a priori will allow the process to develop on its own to provide us with the insights we often need unexpectedly.


The topics addressed by focusing

Focusing stands beyond any theme because it constitutes a way of relating to oneself through the internal resonance of any situation. Thus, whatever the theme (physical and mental suffering, relational issues, identity, decision-making and action, etc.), it activates a bodily echo which will serve as an internal reference to adjust to the situation and become self-evident and even more alive. The focusing approach revolves around certain strengths :


A global approach

This is our “material”, our place of experience. Our sensitive, subtle, vibrant and living body gives itself to a perception with finesse. In the focusing approach, this body (before the body-mind split) serves as the reference from which the process of change develops.



A humanist approach

The individual is at the heart of our experiential and humanist approach. This approach gives the person their full power, their autonomy, it gives them the ability to make choices in accordance with them. Instead of looking at the problems, it is above all the person, their resources, their potential for development and actualization that are carrying forward.

Photographer © 2020 Luce Dupont – Via Tara


An experiential dimension

What are we talking about exactly? Of what is experienced in the body as a vague and global impression that we call “felt sense” . This felt sense is at the same time sensoriality, meaning and direction, we describe it, specify it, listen to it. Through it we let the living manifest itself so that it enlightens us from within.

FOCUSING INSTITUTE of French-speaking Europe

The mission of the IFEF

The Focusing Institute of Francophone Europe (IFEF) is an association of people directly concerned by the focusing process and more generally by the Experiential Humanist Approach. We join the philosophy and practice developed by Eugene Gendlin on the basis of the Person-Centered tradition of Carl Rogers. Its mission is to explore, promote and disseminate focusing. To achieve this, IFEF organizes training courses, seminars, takes part in conferences and publishes articles. An important goal is to deepen the focusing method.

Discover the IFEF : http://www.ifef.org/