I have been asked this question recently by new clients. I thought that writing this blog about it would prepare potential clients and provide some orientation. Emotionally focused therapy EFT is an intervention based on empirical research of adult bonding. This modality is utilized in individual, couples and family therapy with the purpose to identify and address distress in relationships. EFT is a beneficial approach that helps to understand one’s emotional responses and those of significant people in our lives.
In therapy, our goal is to enhance the perceived security and connection in relationships through focusing on emotions and emotional responses and those of partners and family members. This can help to address attachment-related insecurities and how to interact in more loving, responsive, and emotionally connected ways, that lead to more secure attachment.
EFT is based on attachment theory which highlights the importance of
emotional contact and safe connections to develop healthy relationships. Lack of which can go back to abandonment, neglect, and trauma during childhood. Such unresolved issues and unmet need might lead to repetitive negative patterns of conflict caused by insecure attachment and lack of trust. EFT is a non-directive approach to treatment in which clients gain better understanding through nonjudgmental expression and attentive presence and validation.
EFT involves nine treatment steps that begin with the identification and assessment of interaction styles and de-escalation. In the middle phases of treatment, the therapist collaborates with the clients to find ways to form stronger bonds in the relationship. The therapist reframes key issues in terms of negative patterns of interaction, underlying emotions and fears, and each client’s attachment needs. Changes are consolidated in the final stages which eventually helps clients become better able to identify the attachment issues underlying conflict to express related emotions. The therapy is considered complete when clients can reliably engage in changed interaction patterns learned in therapy outside of the therapy environment.
Ola is a Registered Clinical Counsellor offering a holistic approach to healthy relationships, life transformation and fulfillment.