Emotionally Focused Therapy (EFT)

Emotionally Focused Therapy (EFT) is a specific form of psychotherapy commonly employed in couples therapy, developed by Dr. Sue Johnson. It operates on the premise that robust emotional connections serve as a vital foundation for fulfilling and thriving partnerships. EFT is designed to aid couples in comprehending and reconfiguring their emotional responses to one another. By identifying and addressing ineffective communication and interaction patterns, EFT endeavors to replace them with constructive, emotionally invested behaviors. The therapy is rooted in attachment theory, which highlights the inherent human need for secure emotional bonds. EFT endeavors to foster stronger emotional attachments and more gratifying relationships through a compassionate exploration of emotions and a restructuring of interpersonal dynamics.

Emotionally Focused Therapy (EFT)


The 1980s saw the development of Emotionally Focused Therapy (EFT), which was created by Drs. Sue Johnson and Les Greenberg. EFT, which has its roots in attachment theory, emphasizes the development of strong emotional ties within partnerships. Dr. Johnson's ground-breaking book, "Emotionally Focused Therapy for Couples," and published in 1988, offered a thorough framework for its use. EFT gained popularity quickly and is now one of the most thoroughly studied methods of couples therapy. Due to its success, more extensive applications were made, such as family work and individual treatment. Today, EFT is a widely used and regarded type of psychotherapy that has influenced how the field views the crucial part that emotions play in fostering healing and human connections.

Focus theme / core-concept

The guiding principles of Emotionally Focused Therapy (EFT) are as follows:

EFT has its roots in attachment theory, which holds that people have a natural desire for strong emotional connections. It highlights the importance of close bonds as the cornerstone of emotional stability.

Emotional Responsiveness: A key component of EFT is for couples to be emotionally aware of and receptive to one another's needs. This fosters a feeling of security and safety in the connection.

Cycles of negative interaction: EFT identifies and addresses problematic partner interaction patterns. These cycles frequently involve actions that weaken emotional connection, such as criticism, defense, and withdrawal.

Identifying and Expressing Emotions: EFT assists people in identifying and expressing their more intense feelings. Through this process, partners can connect on a deeper, emotional level, which promotes understanding and closeness.

Reframing and Restructuring Negative Interactions: EFT tries to reframe and restructure negative interactions by substituting more emotionally engaged, constructive behaviors. This promotes the development of a stronger emotional bond.

Creating New Emotional Experiences: The goal of EFT is to help couples develop new emotional connections. These intimate exchanges foster intimacy and trust.

Understanding of Cycles: EFT acknowledges that relationship difficulty frequently follows cycles. Couples can stop destructive cycles and establish healthier communication styles by recognizing and comprehending these tendencies.

EFT investigates the wants and anxieties of each partner about attachment. Forging a more stable and fulfilling connection, it is essential to comprehend and resolve these underlying factors.

Change and Acceptance are Integrated: EFT blends the desire for change with the acceptance of each partner's emotional experience. While respecting the needs and feelings of each individual, this balanced approach enables growth.


Those seeking to improve their emotional well-being and interpersonal bonds can benefit from emotionally focused therapy (EFT) in several ways.

1. Enhanced Emotional Connection.

2. Improved Communication.

3. Resolution of Relationship disagreements.

4. Reduced Emotional anguish.

5. Increased Self-Awareness.

6. Greater Relationship Satisfaction.

7. Improved Problem-Solving Techniques.

8. Strengthened Trust and Security.

9. Persistent progress.

10. Adaptability and Diverse Relationships.

11. Reduction of Relational Distress.

12. Positive effects on the well-being of individuals.


Emotionally focused therapy's primary goals are to foster emotional bonding and create secure, intimate relationships between patients (EFT). Specific objectives are used to achieve these goals:

1. Encourage Secure Attachment: The goal of EFT is to create and strengthen secure emotional connections between partners. This entails fostering a feeling of security, reliability, and accessibility in the partnership.

2. The Emotional Freedom Technique (EFT) attempts to assist people in recognizing, acknowledging, and constructively expressing their underlying emotions. This encourages a greater comprehension of one another's inner selves.

3. Restructure unfavorable interaction patterns: EFT focuses on and alters unfavorable communication and behavior patterns that exacerbate relationship stress. Couples can strengthen their bond by exchanging these with conversations that are more uplifting and emotionally invested.

4. Encourage Emotional Responsiveness: EFT places a strong emphasis on the value of partners who are emotionally aware of and receptive to one another's needs. This entails being attentive, recognizing feelings, and offering consolation and support.

5. Breaking Negative Cycles: EFT assists couples in identifying and breaking the negative interactional cycles that result in conflict and emotional distance. Couples can develop more healthy habits of interaction by comprehending these patterns.


Emotionally focused therapy (EFT) uses a variety of strategies to assist people and couples in recognizing and changing unhelpful emotional patterns, resulting in a more stable and satisfying union.

1. Evaluation and Alliance Formation

2. Recognizing Emotions and Attachment Needs

3. Authentication and Reflective Listening

4. Monitoring Cycles of Adverse Reactions

5. Externalizing the Challenge

6. Conversations about reframing and restructuring

7. Conversations that Touch the Heart

8. Sharing and Accessing Information Vulnerability

9. Producing Fresh Emotional Experiences

10. Tasks for homework

11. Progress is being validated

12. Change and acceptance are integrated