Emotion Focused Therapy: Learn About Your Emotions During Therapy

Last Update on November 4, 2020 : Published on November 4, 2020
Emotion focused therapy

Emotion-Focused Therapy or EFT is a type of psychotherapy that prioritizes self-emotions and makes it a guide to take decisions. This therapy is based on the fact that when an individual lacks emotional awareness, unpleasant emotions and the consequent decisions can harm them.

Thus, EFT acts as a therapeutic approach and makes us realize of who we are.

Our emotions play a crucial role in:

  • Maintaining personal relationships in between couples and families
  • Setting goals for the future
  • Being more decisive in nature
  • Communicating your intentions to others clearly

Therapists help an individual in finding out the range of concerns they are experiencing and ultimately aware them of their emotions. When a person is aware of his own emotions, he is able to lead his life in the right direction and cope up with negative thoughts easily.

What Is Emotionally Focused Therapy

The idea of therapy generated in the 1980s when Dr. Sue John realized that relationships nowadays lack emotions. And for them to be successful, an individual must be targeted with different principles including

a) Awareness of emotions: Finding out own emotions in-depth

b) Emotional regulation: Coping with difficult and intense emotions

c) Transforming emotions: Turning negative emotions into positive ones

Also Read: Ways To Communicate When Angry Like Emotionally Intelligent People

It is also good to know that during the stages of emotion focused therapy, an individual is told about how emotions are produced, their role in functioning, and their relationships with behavior. Not only them, emotions are the reason behind physical and psychological changes and may also influence future decisions.

Looking For Online Therapy?
Drop a mail at info@calmsage.com or check the best online counseling programs to start your experience.

Phases Of Emotion-Focused Therapy

Phase 1: Assessment Of Emotions

This phase is dedicated to identification of underlying emotional problems that are the reason behind self conflicts or relationship conflict. The therapist finds out the idea about how the client is perceiving the situations or if he is acknowledging all the emotions related to it. The problems are reframed and displayed from another person’s perspective.

Also Read: Activities to Improve your Emotional Intelligence | Try Them Now

Phase 2: Identification Of Own Needs

Second phase lets the client understand his own needs and feelings. If the session is undertaken by a couple, both of them try understanding their individual feelings. Once done, these needs are communicated and accepted the way they are.

Phase 3: The Phase Of Change

The solutions to underlying issues are generated and one can see that these solutions are a step closer to what they were earlier. With this, an individual also learns to develop adaptive and interactive behavior.

Who Can Go For Emotion-Focused Therapy?

Although emotionally focused therapy developed for couples in the beginning stage, it later started for individuals to understand themselves. Moreover, now families also undertake this therapy and focus on it to deal with situations like divorce, eating disorders, behavioral issues within teens, adolescents, etc.

EFT is also used to treat psychological issues like:

People with the above-mentioned issues may find themselves with fear or worries and find EFT as a way to recover from them.

Techniques Applied During EFT

There are various types of techniques and interventions during the treatment throughout the therapy course according to the demand.

1. Empathetic listening:

Based on client-centered therapy, the therapist listens to the patient and understands thoughts from his perspective.

Also Read: 5 Tips To Be An Active Listener (And More)

2. Interaction:

An interactive bond is formed between the therapist and patient to find underlying emotions.

3. Find out the problem cycle:

There are problem cycles with certain people that often repeat themselves and cause worriness. This cycle is detected during the discussion and resolved.

4. Validation of emotions:

Whatever the kind of emotions a person experiences, they are fine but try to divert in a positive direction.

5. Encouragement:

The therapist makes sure that the client is encouraged to express his emotions, no matter how they are and how shy he feels to tell them.

Also Read: How To Talk About Your Mental Health When No One Wants To Listen

However, there is also a setback of emotion-focused therapy. The client needs to be honest and open about his feelings to the therapist. But those who deliberately lie to the therapist about the conditions, the therapy acts negligible to them.

Moreover, people who are seeking relief from specific symptoms of mental disorder may not be able to find their treatment with EFT alone.


Emotion-focused therapy helps in understanding yourself and your emotions in a better way and can be undertaken anytime from a therapist, even if you don’t have a specific mental health condition. Connect with an online therapist today by dropping us an email at info@calmsage.com and grasp the benefits of EFT.

More Interesting Reads:

A Therapist Cannot Be Your Friend. Here’s Why!

How Often Should you Talk to Your Therapist: Therapy Guide

Is My Therapy Working? 7 Signs If Your Therapy Is Beneficial

About The Author

Akanksha Soni
Akanksha Soni

Akanksha is an active lifestyle blogger and writer at Calmsage. She has learnt various lessons on happiness and methods to fight depression through 'Gurus' as well as own experiences. An ardent practitioner of Yoga and meditation, she keeps traveling, writes and interacts with people to feel alive.

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