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The 12th Annual Focusing Institute Summer School (FISS 2017)

"How can I make better choices for my life?"

"How can I end my repetitive behavior?"

"How can I stick to my goals?"

Focusing can help!

"Focusing" is a way of tapping into your vast emotional intelligence through the messages of your body. It gives you direct access to your own inner compass, where you know the right direction for your life.

Do you long for a sense of community, a place to really get to know yourself deeply and experience the acceptance of a supportive group?

When was the last time you gave yourself a whole week to play, to connect, to explore yourself deeply?

And wouldn’t it be great to be able to learn Focusing, or explore it more deeply, in the company of four internationally known teachers all together in one beautiful place for one week?

Come join us at our Summer School and explore Focusing for yourself. It just may be what you are looking for, for lasting change.

Who can attend? Are there any prerequisites?
The Summer School is open to everyone! Beginners and advanced Focusers are welcome. No prior Focusing experience is required. The program is designed to be an enriching retreat whether you are new to Focusing or have been Focusing for years.

Teachers and Courses:

Ann Weiser Cornell

Focusing Level One and Releasing Blocks to Action*

Learn Focusing so it's an easy, trusted part of your life; feel comfortable being a Focusing partner to another person; experience the subtle and intricate "felt sense" and how life flows forward from there. PLUS: Learn to apply Focusing to releasing blocks to action. Is there something you want to do but you just don't do it? Read more and watch video

You’ll use self-compassion and empathy to release the blocks that have been holding you back, in this training by one of the most experienced Focusing teachers in the world. By the end of the week you’ll be ready to carry Focusing forward into your own life setting, and continue to release your blocks. Appropriate for beginners and for experienced Focusers who want to release blocks. We’ll create comfort and safety in the group as well as a sense of fun and community.

Read Bio...       Read Continuing Education Info...

Ann Weiser Cornell is internationally recognized as one of the leading innovators and theoreticians of Focusing. She is the author of The Power of Focusing: A Practical Guide to Emotional Self-Healing, Presence: A Guide to Transforming Your Most Challenging Emotions, and Focusing in Clinical Practice: The Essence of Change. She has taught Focusing in 20 countries around the world since 1980, and has developed (with Barbara McGavin) a system and technique called Inner Relationship Focusing. She has given presentations and trainings in Inner Relationship Focusing at the Esalen Institute, the Psychotherapy Networker Conference, the National Institute for the Clinical Application of Behavioral Medicine, the American Psychological Association, and the Cape Cod Institute, as well as offering over 75 privately organized workshops and phone seminars every year. She is a close colleague of Eugene Gendlin, and has co-taught fifteen courses with him on various aspects of Focusing, philosophy, and psychotherapy.
Website: focusingresources.com/

Glenn Fleisch

Recovering the body's spirit: coming alive with Wholebody Focusing*

Great Spirit gave me special wings, calling me to soar above… My transformed body now complete… I fly on the wings of love. Native American prayer

There is a deep yearning within us for wholeness, to restore the full range of embodied experiencing and expressing that is natural to our bodily existence. More ...

Our living body of spirit is both something that is natal to our being, yet is also something that we can (re)create.

This group will be a journey using Wholebody Focusing to call us back and bring forth our lost, forgotten or wounded spirit – renewing a fuller sense of embodied aliveness. We will experience and practice the foundational aspects of WBF as an embodied method of awakening and accessing the body's life energy and spirit to transform our conditioned patterns and recover our natural body of vitality and interconnectedness with all Being(s).

Video coming soon.

Read Bio ...      Read Continuing Education Info...

Glenn Fleisch is a Licensed Psychotherapist with 35 years experience in private practice as a Focusing-oriented therapist (FOT). He is a leading innovator in FOT, especially the theory and  practice of Wholebody Focusing (WBF) to transforming body patterns associated with trauma. His work includes: expressive & drama work; embodied engagement in the shared relational field; restoring the body’s vital life force and natal spirit; and facilitating the body’s deeper unfolding. Glenn has taught WBF and FOT worldwide, and is currently teaching online WBF seminars entitled “Recovering your body’s spirit: becoming fully alive with WBF.” In addition, Glenn has authored numerous papers, articles and book chapters, including “Transformational Focusing,” (co-authored with Doralee Grindler Katonah), and “Focusing-oriented therapy: how the body leads the way at the edge of impasse.” He is currently working on a WBF manual from his online courses as well a book project:  The transformational power of Wholebody Focusing: awakening the vital life-force and recovering the body’s natural spirit.

Nada Lou

Think Different - Focusing for Thinking

Focusing as such does not sufficiently provide moving out. There also need to be a movement outward, into interaction. Gene Gendlin

You know more than you think you do! Getting a felt shift in a Focusing session opens a whole new awareness of your life experience. Read more and watch video

But what comes in Focusing can remain unused because it hasn't been carried forward into right language and action steps. TAE (Thinking at the Edge) gives you those missing steps of just-right articulation. And that is just the beginning! In this THINK DIFFERENT course, you can bring something new for yourself and communicate it to others. In a step-by-step process you will learn how to say more and put your own original ideas into the world with clarity, confidence and success. The skills from this workshop can be used in many different areas of life: personal development, business meetings, professional proposals, creative writing, family interaction, public speaking, educational events, negotiation skills, mediation, and in endless other ways.

Read Bio ...

Nada Lou is well known throughout the Focusing world for her double specialty in Thinking at the Edge (TAE) and Focusing. She taught many courses around the world for over 30 years. She is the author of "The Grassroots Introduction Manual to TAE" and the prolific video maker of more than 45 DVDs featuring TIFI Focusing teachers. Immersing herself in Gendlin's thinking through her DVD Productions has made Nada one of the world's experts in TAE. Since co-presenting TAE workshops with Dr. Gendlin, Nada evolved a personal approach to TAE course called THINK DIFFERENT - FOCUSING FOR THINKING, and is in the forefront of spreading this practice around the world as a study program, live lectures, seminars and webinar courses. Nada is a Focusing Institute Coordinator certified to train those wishing to teach Focusing/TAE. She has the ability to gently and patiently nurture each person's thinking edge, guiding them at every step.
Website: www.nadalou.com

Tobias von Schulthess

Focusing and Playback Theatre

This workshop expands your awareness in listening and interacting through the experience of Playback Theatre. In Focusing, it is important to listen and say back. In Playback Theatre personal stories are played back on the spot to the storyteller and the audience. Read more and watch video

In mirroring what you heard, not only words matter: There is also the sound, the rhythm, the use of room and the gestures, which support the focuser in his/her unfolding process of the felt sense.

Playback Theatre is the invitation to explore a holistic communication that makes you more familiar with the unfolding creativity through the free play with room, body, sound, rhythm and imagination. Improvised acting with Focusing is a wonderful experience to carry forward the personal stories on stage and in life. Let's go!

Read Bio ...

Tobias von Schulthess is a certified playback theatre practitioner, Focusing trainer and mediator. In 2009 he founded the Playback Theatre St. Gallen, Switzerland. He uses and explores the art of playback theatre together with Focusing as a creative, challenging and playful practice to deal with our complex and unpredictable lives. He teaches both as a very effective and sustainable way to lead teams, support learning processes and solve conflicts. Tobias began his working life in a travel agency as a consultant and travel guide. Then he moved to the field of human resources in the industrial and banking business before he started his own business as a trainer, mediator and coach.
Website: www.ent-rollen.ch

Read testimonials

All morning courses are suitable for beginning through advanced Focusers. When you register below, you will choose which teacher's course to follow each morning.

*Continuing Education

If attended in its entirety, this course qualifies for:

The International Focusing Institute is approved by the American Psychological Association to sponsor continuing education for psychologists.

The International Focusing Institute maintains responsibility for this program and its content.

Social Work

The International Focusing Institute, Inc. is recognized by the New York State Education Department's State Board for Social Work as an approved provider of continuing education for licensed social workers #SW-0055.

California Board of Behavioral Sciences

This program meets the qualifications for 12 hours of continuing education credit for LMFTs, LCSWs, LPCCs, and/or LEPs as required by the California Board of Behavioral Sciences. Focusing Resources, CAMFT Approved CE Provider #62524.

(Note: CA applies to Ann Weiser Cornell only)

The Focusing Institute Summer School teachers each offer
a seven-minute sample of their work in this video of a recent webinar.

Focusing Gems Seminar Video
with Ann Weiser Cornell, Glenn Fleisch, Nada Lou, and Tobias von Schulthess

Read the poems shared by Glenn Fleisch on this call.

Afternoon Workshops

Afternoon workshops are an opportunity to explore a variety of topics and teachers.

Click here for a complete list of afternoon workshop titles.


There will be two offerings each day for gentle movement: yoga before breakfast and something different in the afternoon before dinner.

Yoga in the Morning

Each morning before breakfast a yoga class will be offered by Betsy Powers. Betsy’s classes reflect an affinity for mindfulness and classical yoga as a path to personal freedom and healing. Each class will be suitable for all levels and all are welcome.

Betsy Powers LAPC, RYT-200 has been teaching yoga since 2009 and practicing many forms of modern yoga since 2006. While she is primarily a follower/fan of the Ashtanga yoga tradition, her Master's Degree in Body Psychotherapy also informs her current teaching style.

Movement in the Afternoon

Much like the practice of Focusing, this movement class is about creating a safe space in which we can awaken our body's innate wisdom to know what it needs and how it wants to move in each moment. Through a guided series of improvisations with oneself, a partner, or a group of people, we will practice the listening that guides us to move, explore, play, and heal with a sense of curiosity and joy.

Kristin Swiat is a movement-based artist and bodyworker and is interested in the areas where art and healing connect. She earned a BFA in dance from Juilliard in 2003 and has been dancing and choreographing in NY and Europe ever since. She also studied massage therapy at the Swedish Institute and Craniosacral Therapy with the Upledger Institute.


Read what people say about the Summer School program...

Why did you come to the Summer School?
...I wanted to refresh my understanding of Focusing and deepen my body awareness.
...I wanted to get a sense of what the field is all about and to learn to how to Focus by myself and with others.
...I have a desire to know myself and get in touch with my feelings….to get out of my head.

What was the best thing about the Summer School?
...I learned so much and met so many others wanting to find their “true” selves.
...Interacting with so many like-minded people from a variety of countries and professions.



• Registration closes August 7, 2017
• Information about Rooms and Food can be found here
• Information about getting to Garrison can be found here

Room & Board

Dorm (*) $625 (3 or 4 per room)
Commuter (**)$470

• Room and board includes 3 buffet-style meals, facility use, shuttle from Garrison train stop, and parking if needed
(*) Limited availability
(**) Sorry: no discount for meals not taken

The Garrison Institute in Garrison, NY, is located approximately 1 hour north of New York City by train. Participants will check in on Monday, afternoon August 14, 2017 stay 5 nights, and finish the program on Saturday, August 19, 2017.

Special Tuition Discounts

  • TIFI members - Receive $50 off if 2017 dues are paid
  • Register with a friend - $50 off each person
  • Student Discount - $200 (for students currently enrolled full-time in a university or equivalent program). Call the office at 845-480-5111 to register.

Workstudy Job Choices and Discounts

Photographer, Videographer, Audio/Visual, Catch-all, Night-Emergency Assistance, Yoga Instructor, Movement Instructor, Translators.

Click here for full information

Work study applications should be emailed to workstudyFISS@focusing.org no later than March 1, 2017. Please note: we will fill jobs as soon as the right candidate applies, so get your application in as early as possible.

Work study jobs are part-time jobs during the retreat and are opportunities for a tuition discount.

  1. Retreat Photographer $75 off current tuition plus $50 credit at our onsite bookstore – must have own digital camera. This position is filled.
  2. Retreat Videographer $150 off current tuition plus $50 credit at our onsite bookstore – must have own video camera.
  3. Audio/Visual responsible for all audio/visual needs throughout the week such as setting up microphones and projection screens, working the sound board, etc.   Equipment is provided. $450 off current tuition plus $50 credit at our onsite bookstore. This position is filled.
  4. Catch-all (room set-up and clean-up, helping with general requests) -- $350 off current tuition plus $50 credit at our onsite bookstore. This position is filled.
  5. Night emergency assistance (must have car) $250 off current tuition plus $50 credit at our onsite bookstore.
  6. Translators (if needed) when 4 or more people register who need translation, we seek translators – please submit your application early if you are interested so that we can contact non-English groups to let them know the opportunity exists – $750 off.
  7. Certified Yoga and one other movement instructor – two positions - one to lead an early morning class and one to lead a late afternoon class – $750 off.  Yoga will be offered in the morning and something different in the afternoon. These positions are filled. 

If you have questions about the work study jobs listed above, please contact Elizabeth at 845-480-5111 or elizabeth@focusing.org before applying.

Payment Plans and Cancellation

We offer options to split the cost into multiple payments.

Click here for full information

Pay in 2 payments: tuition today, room and board June 15, 2017
Pay in 4 equal monthly payments (note this option is only available until May)
(If a different payment plan would work better for you, please call 845-480-5111 to discuss)

Cancellation Policy

$150 administration fee for cancellation before June 14. After June 14 all fees are non-refundable except in an unavoidable emergency determined on a case by case basis.


TIFI reserves the right to cancel, change and alter the program if necessary. Participants authorize TIFI to use their name, statements and likeness without charge, for promotional purposes in publications, advertising, video, web, new media, or other formats.

Product Code: W-170814-FS



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The International Focusing Institute  |  15 N. Mill St., Nyack, NY 10960, USA  |  Tel: +1 (845) 480-5111  |  Fax: +1 (845) 704-0461
All contents copyright 2019 by The International Focusing Institute   info@focusing.org