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Strengths of Emotionally Focused Therapy

  1. EFT is based on clear, explicit conceptualizations of relationship distress and adult love. These conceptualizations are supported by empirical research on the nature of relationship distress and adult attachment.
  2. EFT is collaborative and respectful of clients combining experiential Rogerian techniques with structural systemic interventions.
  3. Change strategies and interventions are specified.
  4. Key moves and moments in the change process have been mapped into nine steps and three change events.
  5. EFT has been validated by over 20 years of empirical research. There is also research on the change processes and predictors of success.
  6. EFT has been applied to many different kinds of problems and populations.

Goals of Emotionally Focused Therapy

  1. To expand and re-organize key emotional responses – the music of the attachment dance.
  2. To create a shift in partners’ interactional positions and initiate new cycles of interaction.
  3. To foster the creation of a secure bond between partners.

What Happens After EFT?

New cycles of bonding interactions occur and replace negative cycles such as pursue-withdraw or criticize-defend. These positive cycles then become self-reinforcing and create permanent change. The relationship becomes a safe haven, secure base and a healing environment for both partners.

Watch Sue Johnson describe EFT.