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What is Soul Focusing?

gina cenciose

Soul Focusing is a synthesis of the different areas of study and practice that Gina Cenciose has been on for many years. This includes:

Concepts from Inner Relationship Focusing/wholebody Focusing

Nonviolent Communication

Nature and Soul reconnection work

Shamanistic practices/ceremony/

Trauma Release work and Psychotherapy/Energy healing/Spirituality in many forms




Our minds possess astonishing resources, untapped potentials and depths that we might not

even know exist until we discover how to access them, cultivate their powers, and eventually

integrate them into our everyday lives.  Soul Focusing is an amazing process that opens up our

psyche and helps us in three ways:


1. Deep emotional integration and healing of our core childhood wounds and trauma

and to our many selves that need our attention (subpersonalites or parts)


2. To help connect us to our being (Inner Presence) and bring that forward into the world


3. To help re establish our connection to our own soul, and live from our integrity

wholeness and truth.


Rather than attempt to eliminate our partial selves or sub-personalities (which is not

possible) or to repress them into submission, we will practice being present with all that is

arising, learning to follow the golden thread of awareness, to deep and deeper truths, inside

of ourselves, that will change the way we hold, see and relate to all other beings, day by day.


We will put our attention on:


• Partial selves (or subpersonalities) that supported you in childhood and adolescence

to adapt to the challenges of family and social life, but ultimately became barriers to your full and authentic humanity (more about parts below)


•  learning and integrating practices and guidelines for cultivating relationships between the Self and yourparts (or subpersonalities), enabling you to heal your subpersonalities, discover their gifts, and

foster Self-actualization


• how the radical transformation of personal identity happens naturally and organically, with the right helpers, and then flows into our full embodiment, living as a conscious and contributing person in this world.



We’ll explore the landscape of the psyche through an in depth study of Inner Relationship

Focusing in solo exercises, and with partners, in circles and in nature. We also use song and

movement, and deep sharing in these retreats. Using the framework of Nonviolent

Communication premises and radical way of bringing presence into the world, we will delve

into relationships and their deep meaning, using everything to return to the wholeness of life,

and how needs are compasses to aid us in returning to truth within.


What are subpersonalites or parts?


 (This is written by Jay Earley, PhD)


 The concept of parts in many therapeutic models corresponds to ideas from other forms of psychotherapy—for example, defenses, psychic forces, self-images, introjects, and schemas. However, these concepts are normally seen as just mechanical or biological descriptions of how the psyche operates. Parts (or subpersonalities) may operate in similar ways, but they are alive and personal. They do what they do for reasons of their own, and they have relationships with you and with each other. For example, suppose you are using the defense of repression, which makes a certain memory unconscious. We recognizes that a protective part is purposely excluding that memory from your awareness for a reason. Perhaps it is afraid that the memory would cause you to be overwhelmed by pain.


Parts are entities of their own, with their own feelings, beliefs, motivations, and memories. It is especially important to understand that parts have motivations for everything they do. Nothing is just done out of habit. Nothing is just a pattern of thinking or behavior you learned. Everything (except for purely physiological reactions) is done by a part for a reason, even though that reason may be unconscious. For example, if you get distracted at a certain point while exploring yourself in therapy, this is probably not an accident. A part wants to distract you because it is seeking to avoid something.


Understanding the psyche in this way gives you a great deal of power to help your clients change their inner worlds for the better. Since parts are like little people inside us, we can make contact with them, get to know them, negotiate with them, encourage them to trust us, help them communicate with each other, and give them what they need to heal. This gives you an enormously increased capacity for understanding and transforming your client’s psyche—for achieving wholeness.


You may treat the idea of subpersonalities as simply a useful metaphor for viewing the psyche, which it is. But it is much more than that. If you treat the components of the psyche as real entities that you can interact with, they will respond to you in that way, which gives you tremendous power for transformation.





I am not a writer by any means, so I have borrowed one of my favorite author’s definitions here (From his book “Soulcraft” by Bill Plotkin)



What is SOUL?

The vital, mysterious, and wild core of our individual selves, an essence unique to each person, qualities found in layers of the self much deeper than our personalities. The concept of soul embraces the essence of our particular individuality. This individuality reflects our unique and deepest personal characteristics, the core and enduring qualities that define our personhood, the true self, the “real me”.

Soul is what is most wild and natural within us.

Our human souls are embodied (i.e. made visible in the world) through our core powers, our deepest and most enduring powers, those central to our character and necessary to manifest our soul-level uniqueness. Our core powers can be divided into our most central values, abilities, and knowledge. Our core values are the ideals for which we would be willing to die, and for which we in fact live. Our core abilities are the natural talents or gifts indispensable for performing our soul work; these abilities are developed effortlessly or are capable of being honed to exceptional levels.


What is SPIRIT or BEING?

The single, great, and eternal mystery that permeates and animates everything in the universe and yet transcends all.  In contrast to soul, the concept of spirit points to what all people, all things, have in common, our shared membership in a single cosmos, each of us a facet of the ONE BEING that contains all. Sprit both transcends all things and is immanent in all things. Spirit, in other words, can be thought of as something majestic “out there”, something removed from ordinary life; but spirit is simultaneously that which infuses all and everything- the land, the air, the animals, all peoples, our human creations, our own bodies and selves.



Ultimately, each soul exists as an agent for spirit. Soul embraces and calls us toward what is most unique in us. Spirit encompasses and draws us toward what is most universal and shared.