Focusing Around the Dinner Table
A while back, my Wholebody Focusing partner Elizabeth and I decided to spend a weekend together. We live far apart and I needed to fly to where she lives. We called it our Focusing Spa Weekend because we intended to spend our time in Grounded Presence with each other and allow whatever came for us to have the space it needed in order to be heard and nurtured.
Our first evening together, Elizabeth prepared the food, served it and cleaned up afterward. I was aware that my body was quite fatigued from traveling to her home. I asked Elizabeth if it would be okay with her if I just rested on her couch while she was taking care of the dinner chores. She was fine with that. All went well until I was alone at night ready to fall asleep. I sensed that a very critical part in me wanted to be heard.
“You are very selfish. You should have helped cook and clean up. Elizabeth will never invite you back again.” I let that part know it was heard and let it know that Elizabeth and I would be with these feeling in the morning. I fell fast asleep.
The next morning, I let Elizabeth know what came for me. As we spent time with these feelings and others that came for her, we discovered that our childhood dinner tables kept emerging as a point of reference for both of us. We connected our feelings about responsibility, nutritional needs and self-worth to what we had learned from our families as we were sharing meals with them.
Throughout the weekend we continued to work with what was coming for us around our families’ dinner tables as we shared meal preparation activities. The food we served each other was unlike the food that we were used to eating. The meals reflected choices that we were making in the moment for ourselves rather than past priorities. There were new flavors, spices and colors. Our shared space of “we” helped us find a new “me” in what we ate and how we felt about ourselves while we were eating.
Focusing Around the Dinner Table developed from that experience. It starts with a recognition that some of our felt senses in response to life situations can have a connection to the time when we shared meals with our childhood families–our level of comfort with being nurtured, our relationship to food and body image, our sense of self-worth, and our ability and confidence to relate to others. It is fertile ground to find strong felt senses waiting to be discovered.
Upcoming “Focusing Around the Dinner Table” workshops
First, you may be interested in an introductory webinar. Participants may encounter a felt sense that is ready to emerge into awareness regarding mealtime experiences. The felt sense might give the participant a window into what his/her point of view was as a child. The workshop format reflects the actual dinner table atmosphere in which participants connect using Zoom software, hold space for each other, and share their experiences of being fed.
This introductory webinar will be offered twice:
September 12, 2017, from 11:00am – 12:30pm EST
September 16, 2017, from 12:00pm – 1:30pm EST.
Please click here for more information or to register.
In addition, there will be a series of four webinars, each built on the previous one. We recommend you first take the introductory webinar, although it is not necessary. The classes will be capped at ten participants; therefore, we suggest that you register as soon as you determine that you would like to explore this work.
The series will be offered twice. You can choose which one you would like to attend.
Tuesdays at 1pm – 2:30pm (October 10, 2017; November 7, 2017; December 12, 2017; and January 9, 2018)
Saturdays at 11am -12:30pm (October 14, 2017; November 11, 2017; December 16, 2017; and January 13, 2018)
Please click here to register.