Focusing New England

Promoting focusing, listening, and personal growth in the New England area

Sunday October 22, 2017: Writing the River: Introduction to Experiential Journaling

With David Smith

Experiential Journaling is a method of self-Focusing in which the page serves as witness.  Forwarding unfolds as the river of experience flows to the page with a clarity that workshop participants have found both profound and delightful.  After introducing the process of Experiential Journaling, this workshop will give participants ample opportunity to practice the process and for sharing.  As time permits, we will also experiment using this process as a springboard to creative writing.

David Smith is a Certified Focusing Professional and a certified coach with the Creativity Coaching Association.  Through his coaching practice at, he combines these backgrounds to support creatives of all kinds from professional to kitchen-table beginner.  David is a published playwright, has written for New York children’s television, and has won awards for his work for both stage and commercial video.

October 22, 2017 2:00-4:00 at the Arlington Center, 369 Mass Ave, Arlington, MA
Cost is $25 at the door or you may preregister at

Sunday November 19, 2017: Accessing Ancestral Wisdom in Difficult Times with Focusing

With Beilah Ross

During difficult times when we may feel helpless, anxious, alone, or afraid, we tend to seek out the support of those who have more emotional distance from our situation. Having passed into the realm of the spiritual, our ancestors or benefactors possess equanimity, egolessness, and affective distance that we can’t be able to access on our own, especially when flooded with difficult thoughts and emotions. They can offer a wider perspective that comes from having watched human history evolve and devolve over time as well as the wisdom they’ve gotten from their own lived experience.  Focusing can facilitate embodied connection with our ancestors or benefactors, helping us to feel unconditionally loved, cared for, comforted, and guided by them. In this experiential workshop, participants will learn and practice Focusing questions and techniques with people from their family lineage or their “chosen family” so that these beings can become a refuge they go to for strength, inspiration, wisdom and solace in times of adversity.

Beilah Ross, LICSW is in private practice, works with adults, couples and children. In addition to talk therapy, she uses mindfulness, relaxation, EMDR and Focusing to help people connect with their inner wisdom. She also teaches Focusing to individuals and groups.

Sunday November 19, 2017  2:00-4:30 at the Arlington Center, 369 Mass Ave, Arlington, MA
Cost is $25 at the door or you may preregister at

Sunday December 10, 2017: Focusing: A Mindful Practice for Insight and Stress Reduction

With Cathy Cornell and Beilah Ross

Focusing is a quiet, meditative and gentle way to get in touch with one’s whole sense of a problem or situation. It shows how to go beyond your intellectualized views and to gain direct access to deeper and more authentic experience.  This introspective six-step process uses a “felt sense” or body wisdom to let personal life issues surface, becoming clearer and more amenable to change.

Developed by Eugene Gendlin, Ph.D., Focusing teaches a radical shift in attitude towards the self where one employs curiosity, kindness, friendliness and compassion as we listen attentively to what arises from within. The technique of Focusing is useful in reducing stress and in enhancing health. It also helps access creativity and deepen spirituality. Focusing is a tool to help renew one’s energy and sense of well-being, and to become more “in touch” with oneself.

Sunday December 10, 2017 2:00-4:00  at the Arlington Center, 369 Mass Ave, Arlington, MA
Cost is $25 at the door or to preregister call
Cathy Cornell at 617-875-9046
Beilah Ross at 617-686-9378

Sunday February 25, 2018: Unleash Your Creative Spirit With Focusing

With Judi Stein and Sophie Glikson

 As human beings, we all have the unique capacity to be creative in whatever form we choose. When accessing our creative potential, we reawaken a sense of playfulness and purpose, which frequently brings more vitality to our life. And sometimes the immense joy and sense of satisfaction that is experienced when creating are among the precious gems of life. At times, however, many of us find it difficult to tap into our innate creative abilities because of our fears, our inner critics, or our lack of confidence.

In this workshop, participants will be guided through Focusing and a series of creative experiences to find a pathway into their inner creativity. Focusing is a mindfulness practice that helps to reveal our internal experience of the events in our lives. By using a Focusing approach, we can tap into our inner resources and get a sense of what we are experiencing and how we might want to express it.

No experience or artistic abilities are necessary.


Judith Stein, PhD, is a licensed psychologist and a Focusing-oriented psychotherapist, who has a private practice in Lexington, Massachusetts. She is also trained in Mindfulness-Based therapeutic approaches and has been teaching and practicing mindfulness in the Boston area for many years. As a therapist, she relies on her mindfulness practice and focusing orientation as a foundation for her work with others.

Sophie Glikson is a certified Focusing and Expressive Arts Therapist, and a Licensed Mental Health Counselor in the sate of Massachusetts. She offers coaching, psychotherapy and supervision in person in her Creative Pathways practice studio located in Medford, MA., or through online communication if applicable. To address clients’ aspirations, goals, strengths and concerns, she applies the wisdom of the heart, the principles of Mindfulness and Focusing, and the power of imagination.

Sunday February 25, 2018   2:00-4:30 at the Arlington Center, 369 Mass Ave, Arlington, MA
Cost is $25 at the door or you may preregister at 2:00-4:30


Sunday March 18, 2018: Focusing on Mary Oliver’s Poems to Change Your Life

With Sharon Heermance

Around me the trees stir in their leaves and call out, “Stay awhile.” The light flows from their branches. And they call again, “It’s simple, they say,” and you too have come into the world to do this, to go easy, to be filled with light, and to shine.   From When I am Among the Trees.

Mary Oliver’s poetry offers an eloquent bridge between our internal, human experience and the external natural world. With an accessible style, Oliver invites accepting attention and listening deeply, the essence of a focusing presence. Through time together with Mary Oliver’s poems, we will practice Focusing’s distinctive process that invites gentle awareness of what echoes inside. We will lean into poems to deepen resonance with our meaningful experiences. Since poetry is more powerful when heard, we will share aloud selected poems of this Pulitzer Prize poet with intention to listen and respond with our body-self. Through turning toward the heart of a poem, we will offer recognition of our felt sense as a compass for our own unfolding life path. No prior reading of poetry is necessary — the instructor will provide the poems; we will provide each other with an afternoon of focusing and rich sharing.

Sharon Heermance, Ph.D. is a psychologist with a private practice in Arlington, MA. She has studied Focusing with Joan Klagsbrun, Ph.D., and integrates this into her clinical practice. Higher education includes a doctorate in counseling psychology from Boston College and a Master of Arts in Teaching from Brown University. She has led workshops with Lexington and Arlington Community Education that integrate poetry with mindfulness. In 2017, she led workshops blending Focusing with poetry at the Focusing Oriented Therapy conference and with Focusing New England.

Sunday March 18, 2018 2:00-4:30 at the Arlington Center, 369 Mass Ave, Arlington, MA
Cost is $25 at the door or you may preregister at