​Emotionally Focused Couples Therapy (“EFT”) is a therapeutic modality for adult relationships developed by Dr. Sue Johnson. Based on attachment theory and the work of John Bowlby, Salvador Minuchin and Carl Rogers among others, EFT helps couples understand how love and relationships work and flourish.

EFT is the most rigorously researched modality of couples therapy. More than 16 published research studies empirically prove EFT to be the most effective of all the couples therapies and the modality with the longest lasting results. Ninety percent of distressed couples undergoing EFT therapy report dramatic improvement in the overall satisfaction in their relationship. More than 7 out of 10 couples report complete recovery from distress. For a summary of EFT research and articles, click here.

EFT identifies distress in a relationship as the result of a threat or rupture of the emotional bond or “connection” between partners. When this occurs, we are left with coping mechanisms that throw us into negative cycles or “dance” that highjack the relationship and the result is emotional distance between the couple. Negative cycles often result in expressions of frustration, resentment, criticism and anger.

EFT helps couples identify and understand the choreography of the negative dance that drives them apart and blocks the free flow of love, empathy and understanding. Once the “cycle” is clearly mapped out and understood, EFT therapists help couples to correctly identify each other’s emotional cues, safely and effectively express their needs, and ultimately discover new ways of reinforcing and strengthening the kind of secure emotional bond we all long for. Rather than turning away from each other, EFT teaches couples turn toward each other for understanding, support and comfort in times of conflict or distress.

EFT transforms relationships and helps couples understand love and each other with empathy, understanding and love.

The founder of EFT, Dr. Sue Johnson, provides a brief summary of Emotionally Focused Therapy (EFT).

For therapists who want to learn more about EFT, training opportunities in Austin can be found here. Opportunities outside of Austin can be found on the ICEEFT webpage.