Sunday, February 28, 2010

Emotion-focused vs. Emotionally-focused?

Entry for 28 February 2010:

I’ve been doing a lot of EFT training in the past month, and various interesting questions have appeared along the way. For example, when I was in Veldhoven in the Netherlands late January, some folks had recently done EFT Couples (EFT-C) training, which is rapidly emerging in the Netherlands.

So I went back and looked again to the issue of Emotion-focused (Greenberg, Paivio, Watson, Elliott et al., EFT-I) vs. Emotionally-Focused (Sue Johnson et al., EFT-C). Emotionally-Focused Therapy was used in Les Greenberg & Sue Johnson in their 1988 book on couples work. It appears that Les later corrected the usage to Emotion-focused, as part of his work with Sandra Paivio on their 1998 book. In the meantime, Sue Johnson kept the original usage, so that today both names are used but in different contexts. To further confuse things, Les has recently published a book on Emotion-Focused Therapy for Couples (2008), while the Emotionally-Focused Therapy for couples folks now also offer training in individual therapy.

Let’s analyze the two forms semantically, to see if this sheds any light:

1. Emotion-focused means “focused on emotion”. “Emotion” here is a noun, pointing to the idea that the therapy is really about emotion.

2. Emotionally-focused means “focused in an emotional manner”. “Emotionally” here is an adverb, describing the therapy as dramatic and emotionally powerful.

It seems to me that both descriptors refer to important aspects of EFT, regardless of how it is spelled and who is in the therapy room.

1 comment:

Neil said...

Hi Robert,

Have been reading your blog for a while, finding it very engaging. I'm still a student of such things. I have my own blog which I was wondering if you'd be happy for me to place a link in to your blog? I'm trying to gather various person-centred sites that may bless others attempts at learning this particular way of counselling.

I looked for your email address at the top of your blog but couldn't see it? Perhaps as I'm using chrome and running Linux it was hidden for some strange reason :)

My blog:

Many thanks,