chapter  2
28 Pages

The counsellor’s edge of awareness

In talking about the counsellor’s ‘edge of awareness’ I am borrowing a term from Gendlin who, in his work on focusing (1981, 1984a, 1984b, 1990, 1996), uses the expression to describe the outer edge of the client’s awareness where the ‘felt sense’ of what is just becoming accessible to consciousness is experienced. This may be an underlying feeling, sensation, image, metaphor or thought. As Leijssen (1993:129) has explained, when counsellors work at the client’s edge of awareness they find themselves ‘waiting in the presence of the not yet speakable and being receptive to the not yet formed’.