(and by e-mail too if I am not very busy)

For suggestions and complains click on:


(===== Back to base one
Back to first page| Back to the contents| To do it yourself - now
To the Daily Focusing| To the recycled emotions| To the Special projects
To the Guide for the guide| To the Emotions| What are the emotions
The activation programs| Ad hoc activation programs| Supra-Programs
The emotional Supra-Programs | The cover-programs | The trash-programs | How it really works
to the Impossible missions?

Questions and answers

On Sun, 27 Oct 96 P. P. wrote:
   Dear Dr. Shalif,
   I have Raynaud's and have noticed how not only cold 
temperates bring on an attack but how it is linked with 
emotional stress. It was exciting to learn how biofeedback 
might help me to control these episodes of losing circulation 
in my fingers.  
   The use of nifidipine caused me to have serious headaches 
so I stopped taking this medication and tried to avoid getting 
cold hands. Now I experience the Raynaud's during stressful 
negative experiences, the latest of which was one of the most
severe that it frightened me because the attack lasted over 6 
hours and left my right baby finger discoloured like a bruise.
   I hope to discover how to help myself avoid negative stress 
and intend to study your most gracious information.  I shall 
contact you with any success I might have.

P.... P....

Hi P. P.
It seems that your problem is related to constriction of the blood vessels.

It is known that any constriction of muscles - even the non-voluntary ones - is easy to influence with various kinds of biofeedback.

I solved (for myself) the problem of recurrent headaches and Angaina Factorice (recurrent acute heart Ischemia) - both caused by constriction of blood vessels - with my biofeedback without instruments.

It seems that constriction of blood vessels in the hands is more related to anger than to other emotions, so it is worth for you to search for them in particular.

For sure if you invest lots of your attention on your bodily sensations you'll get significant results.

Ilan Shalif (Ph.D.)


On Tue, 12 Nov 96 C. J. wrote:

   My name is C... J... and I have a 10 year old son with A.D.D 
(Attention Deficit Disorder). He was on Ritalin for two years 
when he developed at Terret (sp) syndrome tick in his face that 
escalated ..........  Needless to say he was taken off that
medication fast.  He now is taking Tofranil but this dosn"t seem 
to do a very good job.
   I saw a program on television about how bio-feedback was 
beening used with a lot of success with A.D.D. and A.D.H.D. 
   I downloaded your papers on bio-feedback and would like 
your opinion and any information, and or help that you might be 
able to give me on treating methods that I might persue to help 
my son.
      Thank you for your time and consideration.
   C. J.
Hi C... J...
I can assure you it does help as an ADD myself. (It is really a kind of micro to mild brain damage - common to a few percent of the children - usually a combination of birth and genetics.
Usually, it causes problems in process of learning to use the brain and body but not a permanent deficiencies.
Due to my severe condition I got on the academic "train" - the Psychology wagon - only at the age 35.

If you can convince your son or just persuade him, to pay attention to his bodily sensations in general and to those of his disquiet; and he'll start to do it while you do it - in a game like procedure - he will improve immensely.

It might be better if you start to train yourself few days before. Many have done it from the Hebrew text. I will be glad to be in e-mail contact - even daily if necessary - and answer specific questions to you and your son.

Ilan Shalif (Ph.D.)


On Mon, 25 Nov 96 L. C. wrote:

   "Please e-mail me info about your natural biofeedback 
   I read  with interest the information you had at your web site.

   I have ADD [Attention Deficit Disorder - I.S.] and have heared 
that biofeedback can help. The main symptom I would like to address 
is the random drifting of my mind. One minute I'm thinking one thing 
and several minutes later I will wake up an find I have been 
daydreaming for 10 minutes.

   Can your technique help me? Please e-mail a reply to ..."
Thank you

Dear L. C.

Many factors contribute to the "Drifting of the mind" [the drifting of attention]. (I had in my childhood and youth a sever ADD due to minimal brain damage at birth.)
Un-solved "emotional problems" contribute their share to the problem. Training oneself with my technique (with or without a coach) helps in at least two things:

1) It solves or at least improve "unfinished emotional business". Thus lessen the power of distractors of attention.

2) Investing efforts in paying attention to the bodily sensation strengthen the willful control of attention. (Improving the regulating processes involved.)

If you start to train yourself with the technique, I will be available for further advice.

Have any question ? E-Mail me If it is relevant I'll respond promptly.

Ilan Shalif


Dear L....

On Sat, 30 Nov 1996 you wrote:

> Dear Ilan,
> My name is L...., I am 4.., divorced, I have a son who is 2..
> years old and in the United States Forces .......
> I have suffered from depression since childhood. Sometimes it
> is worse than others.

25% to 50% of the children of the developed countries are found to be depressed (and it does not have to be so).

> I am writing to you to ask you if focusing can heal the "pain
> of depression". I read most of your book and tried the focusing
> described. I have few physical pains, when I focus on whatever I
> can find, it quickly disappears. But I don't understand how
> "focusing" on physical pain can help the miserable emotional feeling
> I have.

If you want to change your emotional climate and get rid of the miserable emotional feelings you have, you better focus on ALL bodily sensations. These you call pains are the easiest to focus on and to train yourself in the art of focusing (and we usually can't know which sensation is related to which problems). Gradually you will find that you can also discern in the body the more diffuse miserable emotional feelings called depression or distress - and focus on them too.

> I'm missing something here. Can you help me?

I don't know for how long or how much effort you invested in paying attention to the various bodily sensations. For people I trained it took few weeks to get rid of depressed feelings which resulted from specific problems of recent occurrences, but some months to get rid of life long miserable emotional feelings like yours.

> I have gone to phyciatrists, therapists, 12 step programs, I
> guess I have made some progress because there was a time when I
> could not even admit that I was depressed even though I was
> feeling that life was senseless. But I still have a long way to
> go and I don't know how to get there.

Focusing makes long stories short. I am sure that if you get into the habit of attending to ALL sensations and feelings (usually 10% of the opportunities is enough), you will write in the not too far future on the miracles you did for yourself.

> I know you must be busy but I would so appreciate any help or advice
> you can give me.
> Thanks so much, L....

I am not too busy and I always have time for people who use my technique.


On Sun, 01 Dec 1996 L.... responded:

Dear Ilan 
Thank You for responding to my email. Until I found your 
page on the net I thought my life would never be any better 
but now I have hope. It means so much to me that you 
I will do as you say and from time to time I will email 
you of my progress. 

Thank you for this "HOPE",


On Thu, 26 Dec 1996 M. wrote: Hi my name is M...., Will this process of biofeedback help for people with add/adhd. And can they be cured from add/adhd by using this method.

Hi M...
You wrote:
Many factors contribute to attention problems - at list part of them are structural. Any program that decrease emotional tension and the number of "unfinished business" improve the various functions of attention.

Biofeedback with instruments was found as effective with attention problems, and so was the case with my technique.

If the one with the problem can concentrate enough attention to practice the various exercises - by oneself or with the aid of a trainer - the attention will improve.

Ilan Shalif (Ph.D.)

On Thu, 26 Dec 1996 M... responded:

Thank You for your reply. I really enjoy.

On Mon, 30 Dec 1996 M.... wrote again:

Hi what section can I read for the mind. Meaning what section can I read

for to get started; people with add/adhd without reading the whole section.
Hi. M...
If you don't like the introductions, You can jump directly to the stormy water in chapter 5. To enter there directly, click on:
Ilan Shalif (Ph.D.)
On Mon, 30 Dec 1996 M... responded:

Thank You for helping me.


On Sat, 28 Dec 1996 R... P... wrote:
Is it possible to control blood glucose levels with biofeedback?

What about without instruments??
Hi R... P...

It is hard to talk on blood glucose levels in the abstract. There are people who does not have in their body any production of insulin, and there are others whose production of it is just not enough in few circumstances.

And there is the problem of ongoing measurement of glucose levels in the blood. There are instruments - in the automatic internal pump for the supplying of insulin that have ongoing readout in real time. The usual measuring instrument does not supply such a readout.

If one's problem of blood glucose levels is not extreme and one have discernible bodily sensations when glucose levels rise, one can influence them directly.

Otherwise, like in other psychosomatic health problems - the more the contribution of the psychological factor the more the biofeedback without instrument can contribute as it is a general contributor to the psychological well being.

Ilan Shalif

     You CAN teach old dog new tricks BUT it takes allot of effort. 
             So pay attention to the pleasant and unpleasant 
                bodily sensations... and the troubles will
                     start to take care of themselves.


On Tue, 21 Jan 1997 S. wrote:

I enjoyed your booklet that I downloaded.  I live in NYC. 
Do you know any "coaches" you can recommend in this area?
Hi S.

Very sorry, the advertisement of the technique in English is only five months old.

If you enjoy it, teach another person and coach each other... I will be always for you (at least few years more).

Feel free to ask for tips.

Ilan Shalif (Psychological Ph.D.)
Self-help book -
down-load site -


On Sun, 26 Jan 1997 I. L. wrote

Dear Dr. Shalif, What to focus on? How do you hit a moving

                Whipped Around
Hi I. L.

If you try to practice the first step of focusing training in the self help book, you will find the detailed answer. To put it here in short:

It is easier to focus the attention on a static target. However, even if you are "Whipped Around", you can still follow with your eyes a bird in the sky and a bodily sensation that is not static. (Some time sensations "cruise" in the body, sometimes they even jump each few seconds from place to place.)

Ilan Shalif

On Tue, 11 Feb 1997 F. W. wrote:

Dear Dr. Ilan,

  I just came across your article in the net about doing biofeedback
without equipment. It is so kind of you to publish this kind of article
in the net free. I'm new to biofeedback, I'd like to try the techniques
you presented. before I start I'd like to ask if biofeedback is suitable
to my situation. 

   I have some slight tremor with both of my hand which is
tolerable when not working or working alone, but will be quite difficult
when I'm asked to sigh/write something before other person. can
improve my situation? did you have similar cases? 

   I'm sorry to distrub you with my own problem, I really need some help 
on this as it has given a lot of inconvenience to my life. thanks, Dr.
Ilan, hope to hear from you soon, bye.


Dear F. W.

biofeedback without instruments is suitable FOR EVERY ONE. Every one can benefit from it, as any one has "unfinished business", which the use of the technique helps to organize in a better format. Thus, the quality of the brain-mind system improve and so all its functions. Even if the origin of your problem is of the kind of "pure physiological" that are not directly influenced by biofeedback (there are very small number of them), it will improve as all the brain-mind system improve.

Few of my trainees had "unstable hands" in addition to their other problems. The more they invested in the application of the technique the more they benefited in this matter too.

So, you can start to follow the various instructions (including the advices for cautious) and keep in touch.

Ilan Shalif (Psychological Ph.D.)

            So pay attention to the pleasant and unpleasant 
                 bodily sensations... and the troubles
                     will take care of themselves.
On Fri, 04 Apr 1997 K. wrote:

Maybe you can clear something up for me as far as ADD is concerned.  
While my mom was pregnant with me she had a thyroid problem.  The 
doctors did X-rays and made her drink radium even though they knew 
she was pregnant.  Several weeks later they told her to have an 
abortion and she refused (thanks to her strong religious back 

In my research I have noticed minimal brain damage and ADD placed 
in the same category and even talked about as if they were 
interchangeable.  How can ADD be considered as minimal brain damage 
if it is hereditary?  I can see where I would have brain damage but 
where did my dad get it?  He was clearly born with ADD because he 
exhibited the acute sense now related to ADD.  When he was several 
years old he had Gillian Barre Syndrome which does not cause brain 
damage but does cause loss of motor skills.  So how can ADD be 
considered as both hereditary and minimal brain damage?  Where is 
the logic behind this? 

I'm sorry but I generally feel the need to find a logical explanation 

Thanks for your time!!!

Hi K.

Names have historic origin and so are MBD (minimal brain damage) and ADD (attention deficit disorder). As diagnosing of malfunctions of brain subsystem is very complicated, a more heuristic approach was used.

The origin of many problems at school was initially found to be related to various brain damages. Many other problems suspected to be so, were not properly diagnosed. This is one of the reasons the diagnosis of ADD replaced that of MBD.

To my knowledge (based on the psychometric diagnosis of thousands of school pupils - children and adolescents) in each of us the quality of various parts of the brain are inferior to other parts, because of plethora of factors. For the more significant deviations, heredity is in some cases only a propensity, which will be activated if other factors are joining (Physiological ones or even pure psychological ones). In other cases the heredity factors are stronger and need no "help" from other factors.

In few of the cases of ADD and other severe problems brain traumas are the sole reason for the malfunctioning, in others the combination of propensity and a contributor of one kind or the other are the reason.

My hunch is that in the majority of the cases the main reason is in an hereditary factor and the various damages and psychological factors only aggravates them.

Whereas there is nearly no one whose all brain functions are on the same level... In many cases psychological factors contribute to the aggravation. In most cases, various psychological factors can compensate or even help to solve at least part of the problem. The General Sensate Focusing technique is intensely involving the attentional variables. So, like biofeedback WITHOUT instruments it improves their functioning - even if no one complained about it before.

ALL trainees are surprisingly discovering the blessing of the enhancement of their ability to concentrate attention.

So, the attention deficit disorder is a group phenomena resulting from many brain problems. Even in the extreme cases, it is usually easier to overcome than to diagnose the main structural, chemical and psychological factors involved. (Most of the time, even if correctly diagnosed, it may still be irrelevant to the remedy.)
             So pay attention to the pleasant and unpleasant 
                 bodily sensations... and the troubles
                     will take care of themselves
 On Sun, 18 May 1997 C. W. wrote:

i downloaded your book several months ago and found it fascinating. 
i had read Gendlin and found his technique hard to do. i practiced 
for about three weeks and began to feel so much more relaxed. i went 
from about 2 packs of cigarettes to about 9 a day. then, in my 
opinion my main trash program went to work. ("trash program" a 
concept from the self-help book, labeling a kind of activating 
pattern of the mind/brain I. S.)
i got a very bad cold that lasted three weeks. when it was over i
found that even though i wanted to practuce focusing, something kept 
me from doing it. anyway i know it is up to me to do the program and 
i am slowly struggling to adopt it into my life again.
my question and its not a  problem. i just wondered what is going on. 
when i focus my attention on my diaphram, it immediately begin to 
yawn with every breath i take as long as my attention is there. i 
guess i am just curious about what is there, even though i know that 
is not important. thank you for any feedback you can give me. 

sincerely, c. w.
Hi C. W. Thanks for the feedback.

It is sometimes hard to dedicate efforts and to keep focusing in a high level of intensity. It usually starts after the third week, as the bodily sensations become milder and shorter.

If you start to teach somebody the use of the new technique, it would be easier for you to keep the investment in practicing on a higher level.

As for the yawning resulting from the focusing of your attention on your diaphragm, you can treat it as any other bodily sensation. Usually, yawning results from a fast decrease in tension - very common during sensate focusing sessions. Most of my trainees start to yawn and stretch at the middle of their sessions with me (and not from boredom).

If you will post me a short note each week, it might help you to keep the focusing on the more intensive level.

Ilan Shalif


On Tue, 3 Jun 1997 J. K. wrote:

Your technology looks very promising. Do you know of any glaucoma 
cases that improved using your process?

Thank you,
J. K.
Hi J. K.

Among the hundreds I have trained, no one had glaucoma. Among the thousands who visited my sites and tried the technique... who knows.

As I understand, glaucoma can result from various processes and I do not know if any of them is dynamic enough and create a discernible bodily sensation one can use as biofeedback and focus attention on.

As any physiological process is in part psychosomatic, using the technique can contribute to the improvement achieved by other means.

For sure, using my technique can help to overcome psychological stress resulting from knowing you have glaucoma. It can also help to lessen the side effects of the drug treatment of the glaucoma.

Ilan Shalif (Psychological Ph.D.)


On Mon, 16 Jun 97 I.J. K. wrote:
 In Nov., l993, my wife fell on her head and
 suffered brain stem injury which has resulted
 in almost constant headaches and a definite
 reduction of her cognitive functioning.  So
 much so that she was forced to leave her
 elementary teaching position after thirty-
 nine years.  My question is:  Would biofeed-
 back help my wife?  I would appreciate your
 comment and also where your book can be pur-
Thank you.   
I.J. K.
Hi I.J. K.

There are good news and bad news.

The good ones are that any dynamic process that can be felt and/or measured can be the target of biofeedback training.
Head aches are easy to feel so are easy to train even without instruments.
I started to apply to them biofeedback without instruments (just attending to the head aches) 35 years ago... years before I become psychologist.
So, if your wife will train herself with my technique or find a biofeedback professional, success is only the function of efforts invested.

The bad news are that my self-help book was not printed in English. If you want it printed, you have to print a copy yourself.
Either download it from: and the seven following files, or take it in one big file of 400kb from

Ilan Shalif

Subject: Biofeedback, Smoking & High Blood Pressure

On Thu, 19 Jun 1997 S. H. wrote:
Dear Dr. Shalif:
  I have high BP and have to quit smoking.  Not smoking creates anxity
and the BP goes up.  I am hoping that by using Biofeeback I will learn
to reduce the anxiety and when I feel that I want to smoke I can learn
to control the tension.
  If you have any additional suggestions for a beginner I would
appreciate them.  Being an artist I probably do have a more hyper
personality than some others.
  Thank you,
  S. H.
Hi S. H.

How pity, there is not yet any simple instrument which measures the blood pressure continuously (with an instantaneous read out).

If you can use the available instruments to help you identify the bodily sensations related to the high blood pressure, the task of lowering it by focusing the attention on it will be easier.
Other wise you will have to relay on the general improvement achieved with the attending undiscriminatly to all kinds of bodily sensations.

Feel free to post me any additional questions. I will be glad to receive feedback about the successes - small and big, achieved by your efforts.

Ilan Shalif (Psychological Ph.D.):
download site -


On Mon, 11 Aug 1997 U. wrote:

I would just like to ask you if you think your technique
would be good for me. I believe that it is stress that
causing the ringing in my ears.
When I wake up, the ringing is 99% gone, but as I go
through the day it gets louder and at night, it's at
it's peak.  I have a stressful job and that's one of the 
reasons why the noise level I believe goes up. I have
developed this problem about 3 months ago. 
It started when I listened to a loud speaker for about 15 
to 20 min.  But I don't think I was hurt that much, 
considering that the ringing is not even worth talking 
about in the morning. 
I believe that I have learned a very bad habit that I 
can't seem to get out of.  Also you speak of focusing 
on the problem itself, do you think I should be focusing 
on the ringing, if so, should I do it when it gets loud 
or as soon as I wake up? Your answer will be greatly 
Hi U.
Ringing in the ears is usually called tinitus. Its lower levels are very common. It is experienced as if one listen to a broadcasting station that only gives the monotone signal. It can be very annoying.
It can be caused by various problems of the internal mechanisms of ears and hearing, but mostly it is a result and/or signal of stress.

Using the technique and/or other procedures for the allocation of concentrated attention to the ringing can helps allot.
After a while, the systematic allocation of concentrated attention to it contribute to the lowering of the ringing or even to its disappearing.
When it is related to psychological stress (which is always so in one measure or another) it is recommended to allocate attentional resources to all bodily sensations. The returns are always huge, without proportion to the meager resources dedicated to this.

Ilan Shalif (Alternative Psychologist)


On Sat, 20 AUG 1997 I responded to J. V. post:

Hi J. V. You wrote:

> Dear Ilan,
> a lot of thanks for your guide through the focusing
> technique, published on the Internet. My name is J,
> I am male, Czech, 55 years old, working in the > computer area.
> I appreciate your fight for the independence from gurus,
> "specialists" and from all other manipulators.
> Please, could you kindly give me your opinion?

I promised and I will do my best.

> When I am focusing places of my pains or bad feelings,
> I can not help myself, I try to relax this area, to
> quiet it. According a minor problems, discomforts, they
> dissolve after that very quickly.

Some times strong bodily sensations are the result of minor problems and sometimes serious problems are expressed in minor bodily sensations. So, you can never be sure.

> But the most painful place, the pain behind my ayes,
> accompanying the headache, is very resistant. The pain
> forces me to quiet and relax this area. Is it bad, good
> or is it my choose?

Often, when one begins the focusing project, one have a "favorite" place with a recurrent unpleasant sensation. After one is sure this is not a medical problem, one can start the project of solving the problems responsible, using the focusing technique.

If one is starting focusing each time the sensation starts to develop (and is still faint), results are faster and many times the intense pain does not come. Better even, pay attention to the faint sensations that are always there (and in any other part of the body one attend to), any time you have a chance... and remember to do it.

When the sensation become too unpleasantly too strong, one can use the hand rubbing and muscle tensing to make it a bit more bearable. If it does not help or too tiring - just let it go and do something else for a while.

> What do you think about?

I had few trainees with persistent head aches like yours (or other nasty and recurrent sensation in the body) and it took weeks of intensive use of the technique on ALL bodily sensations till there was a significant improvement.

> Ilan, thank you very much for your answer.
> Regards
> J.

Feel comfortable to ask about tips and communicate results. (A weekly contact, for a while, is welcome.)

Ilan Shalif (Alternative Psychologist)
download site:


On Sat, 18 Oct 1997 J.B. wrote:

Hi, My name is J. B. I have been thinking 
of quiting smoking. But the problem i have right 
know is that i am living with someone that smoke's.
You are probaly wondering why i dont move, well 
the reason for that is because i dont have that 
kind of money.I really would like to stop smoking 
but like i said before i am living with a friend 
that smokes and when i asked him if you would stop 
if i stoped he said no.The reason he said no is 
because he wants to get to heaven quicker.I want to
stop smoking ,the reason for this is because;  
  1. I feel really weak latley
  2. I cant concertrate like i used to.
  3. I smoke too much like 2 to 4 packs a day.
  4. I sleep ok but when i get in the morning i
     feel like garbage.I dont feel refreshed.
  5. I feel like i am dieing anymore.(I hope that
     didn't sound strange)
  6.I get headaches alot

Well those are the reasons i wish i could just stop.
I tried the Gum (Nicorete) which didnt work.When i 
dont have a cigarette i get a very short Fuse.Well 
thats all for now.

              Signed: J. B.

Hi J. B.

The addicting to smoking is much more than to nicotine consumption. However, kicking the habit is not too hard for one who wish to get rid of it.

The various effects you described are the usual results of heavy smoking and it is easier to get rid of them through quitting smoking than any other means.

Few of my trainees who so wished, succeeded. It just need adherence to a prolonged schedule.

If you really care, you can start to train yourself with the technique. If you want to quit smoking, or just getting it to less than 10 cigarettes a day, combine from the beginning the protocol of focusing on the urges involved smoking with the various steps of focusing training.

If you so do, you can count on free weekly e-mail communication with me.

Ilan Shalif (Alternative Psychologist)


Dear U. You wrote:

> I have been reading your book that you published on the
> Internet; at this point I have read most of it. I have
> a ringing in the ear problem that has been going on for
> about 6 months.

Ringing in the ear(s) is very common. Most people experience it for short periods - especially at moments of low environmental sound stimuli (silence).

In medical vocabulary it is usually called "Tinitus". It can be caused by medical (health) problems of various bodily systems - especially the one involved in the (auditory) sense of hearing.

> I also have been going to stress management counciling.
> Which by the way has been helping, but I feel that your
> method would be the final answer to my predicament.

Ringing in the ear, whatever the reason for it can me influenced by various physiological, psychosomatic and psychological factors and processes.

ANY thing that lower stress may help to reduce stress, but, few methods are better, less unpleasant, more efficient, etc. (and cheaper) than others.

Biofeedback and more so biofeedback without instruments (which use the ringing as the measure of itself) may help.

> The ringing in the ear is psychosomatic, I know this
> because, on some days the noise is completely gone.
> But it comes back, the way it's been going is two
> days good, one day bad.

Though it seems to be psychosomatic, precautions should be taken, as there may be a physiological problem at the base of the ringing. Medical examination is recommended, even if the ringing disappear after short period of focusing.

> For about a week, I have been focusing, using
> your method. At this point I have not been able
> to make it disappear, by the focusing method.
> In the past I have managed to actually focus the
> noise down to nothing, but unforuanately I really
> can't put my finger on how I achieved this, and it
> was done quite by accident.

When one focus the attention on a sensation related to a problem, the sensation may take it's time. As one is working on the sensation indirectly - by activation and changing various processes mostly unidentified, one can never be sure...

Sometimes minimal efforts bring fast change in a big problem... sometimes lots of efforts dedicated to a minor problem take long time of focusing.

> I feel I have the ability, but what my question to
> you is, during the focusing are you supposed to
> bring the sound down to zero in one sitting, or
> is this a gradual thing?

When focusing on a sensation which is not related to a severe health problem (not related to the heart or similar ones) it is better to prolong the focusing as long as possible. The sensation itself is like the peak of an iceberg visible above the water while the bulk of the mass is below the surface... While you focus on the sensation, the mending processes are "working" on the invisible and unconscious processes whose expression is the ringing. Thus, the longer you focus on the ringing and other sensations the more you invest in the improvement of the underlying processes.

> Does it slowly over time lower in volume?
> Can you give me any hints as to what I could
> be doing, either better, or what I am not
> doing properly?

You can expect that any problematic aspect you work on will improve and every unwanted sensation will be less intense, less frequent and even disappear for long stretches of time... But, it is hard to predict how fast or how much efforts need each problem. (More detailed explanations and tips you may find in the texts on my site.)

> You also mention in the book that with
> psychosomatic problems, that it could take
> sometime to achieve relief, do you think
> I'm being overly optimistic?

Usually, a beginning of relief is already felt some where during the first three weeks of focusing. The occurrence of more significant improvements depend on the specific problem, the amount of problems one has to begin with and the amount of efforts invested in the focusing endeavor.

> My current methods for focusing are, when
> the noise is loud or soft on any particular
> day I still focus, I close my eyes and zoom
> in on the noise, you mention in the book that
> it may be hard to pinpoint the target, but for
> me it's easy. Next I focus for two minutes at a
> time or maybe a little longer, is this enough time,
> should I do it for a longer time or shorter time? I
> also focus about 5 to 10 time a day, is this too
> many times or not enough?

The longer the better, the more you invest, the more will accumulate the improvements, the faster you get rid of the recurrent ringing. Along the years, many hundreds of trainees focussed on many problems. Few (included me) even invested few hours a day - in time dedicated to focusing or in parallel to other activities... no one of us suffered from any negative result of too much focusing.

> I have great hope in your focusing technique and
> your reply will mean allot to me.
> Thank You.

Your communication is for me a significant gift, as only few of the 1500 visitors a month contact me and give feedback.

Thus, any one who do contact me is eligible for a weekly "supervision" for the duration of the first period of focusing.

Ilan Shalif


On 21 Nov 1997 U. responded and got the following answer:

Hi U.

I will repeat what I wrote in previous post and in my book:

To get the most benefit from the technique - even if you have "only" one problem that bother you, better focus on ALL bodily sensations. Many times, the round about approach is bringing the best results even with regard to a specific and concrete one.

It is most probable that focusing on OTHER sensations will bring faster results with the tinitus noise than the focusing on this noise itself.

If the noise was a result of specific local physiological problem, your tactic might be the best. But, if the ear specialists are right, the best results with the tinitus will be achieved by focusing on other bodily sensations.

> Thank you for writing back so soon.
> I have fairly good news, I sat in a chair by myself in the
> quite, and focused for a straight 25 minutes, once in a while
> I would loose focus, but I came right back. The volume in my
> ears was very loud, but after I guess 15 minutes, I brought it
> down about 50%. It did not last long, as I expected, but I
> was very happy that I had the capability to lower it at all.
> This was the first time I attempted to lower the volume when
> it was at it's fullest. This gives me new hope, and I think
> the overall level has gone down somewhat. I have noticed that
> if I don't have a good nights sleep, that the volume the next
> day is loud to somewhat loud.

In night sleep, and especially the REM phase of it, the natural work on minds procedures is done. Focusing just enhance the same processes.

> You cautioned me that this may not be a psychosomatic problem,
> and that it could be a medical one. Well to answer your
> question I have gone to 3 medical doctors and all 3 told me
> that medically there was nothing wrong with me. This is how
> I came to the conclusion that it's psychosomatic. And it all
> figures to be just that. I am continuing with the focusing,
> but I do notice that I have to be in a quite place in order to
> concentrate, I have not been able to focus in an area where
> people are talking, I suppose I will get to this level, but
> not right now.

If you train yourself in attending to ALL bodily sensations, you will find that you can find ones in any condition. (Listening to the voices of others - not only to the words, is also a kind of focusing.)

> Would you say that with increased focusing, that when the
> level of noise is brought down, over time the effect of lowered
> volume would last longer than the first time which I talked
> about in this letter?

If it is psychosomatic one, it will sure start to disappear for longer and longer periods of time. ALL people have it for short periods of time, but usually it happens seldom and for no more than few minutes.

> You speak in your book about being very determined will I am
> very determined just like you and other you spoke about. I
> will beat this thing, someday, sometime.

Determination that does not translate itself to investment of efforts in focusing on ALL bodily sensations in each opportunity, is just magical wishful thinking - not a real one.

> I hope I am not being too much of a bother to you, but I would
> like to keep touch, just until I get a good foot hold on
> focusing, and my problem. I didn't understand what you meant
> when you said, in the first period of focusing, that you would
> give me supervision, please explain.

As long as you invest in focusing and have relevant questions, I have enough time and will you. Just keep training in focusing on ALL bodily sensation - and post me about it.

> You are the only person I know who can give me the counseling
> I need on focusing at this time. Your patience is very much
> appreciated.

I hope others will join me soon. In the mean time feel welcome.



On 30 Nov 1997 H. wrote:

Hi! I found your page on the web and as someone who has been into 
and read many self improvement things over the years, i was quite 
As someone who loves to sing, I was especially interested when I 
saw a section in which you claim that it is relatively simple to 
improve the voice using your techniques. however, I wasn't really 
sure exactly what you are saying one should do to effect this 
change in the voice.  
Furthermore, most of my vocal problems seem to be due to things 
in my throat... phlegm, acid, or whatever that coat my vocal 
cords and tighten up my throat as a response. I have been taking 
medications for this on and off for years with little effect.  
Do you think that your techniques could help with this?  
i have dreamt to sing for a very long time but my voice is 
always too tight and messed up.  Only when at its very very best 
is it good.  
Please write back and let me know.  If you can help me with this 
you will have a loyal believer in your techniques :) 
Thanks you.  
Hi H. You wrote:

> claim that it is relatively simple to improve the
> voice using your techniques.

The technique was not developed as a process to improve the voice quality.

However, it was found that people who train themselves with the technique improved the qualities of their voice.

It was also found that paying special attention to the qualities of one's voice helps a lot in all psychological problems one wants to solve.

The various emotional processes are very intimately involved with the vocal cords - psychologically and psychosomatically. Thus the improvement in it achieved by the use of the technique.

If you start to train yourself with the technique, you will be eligible for a while to free weekly e-mail tips from me in response to specific questions.

Ilan Shalif


On 01 Dec 1997 G. P. Wrote:

> Hi, I saw on TV that migraine headache can be treated with
> biofeedback excercises, basically working on the sympathetic
> nervous system that helps us deal with emergency situations.
> Where could I find information about it?
> Thank you,
> G. P.

Hi G. P.

I think the processes are much more complicated, but, luckily, we can concentrate our attention on the head ache it self.

You can find more information on the application of biofeedback without instruments in my mirror sites:
About more conservative techniques of biofeedback you can find by search in the internet.

Ilan Shalif (Psychological Ph.D. - Alternative Psychologist)

So pay attention to the pleasant and unpleasant
bodily sensations... and the troubles
will take care of themselves.


On 03 Dec 1997 M. M. wrote and I responded:

Hi M. M. You wrote:

> I've read your "General Sensate Focusing" book. I think it
> is very interesting, but when I tried to apply it to myself
> I've noticed a lack of physical sensations when I feel bad,...

There are many people who have learned to suppress unpleasant bodily sensations. When they start to search for them, they need to "unlearn" this.

> because my bad feelings are in cognition (bad thoughts and
> remembering bad situations in the past), but I can't locate any
> particular address of a bad sensation.

There are no bad sensations, ALL of them are useful thus good. There are, however, some less pleasant some barely discernible and few pleasant ones.

> Am I wrong in something ? Can you help me ??

You are dead wrong. If you adhere to the training procedures, and pay attention to suggestions about leaning the head backward a bit you will sense some thing to start with.
Then post me again.



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