Emotionally Focused Therapy
My main interest lies in using Emotionally Focused Therapy (first developed by Dr Leslie Greenberg) as this allows clients to get in touch with their feelings and emotions. Developing self-awareness around feelings and re-experiencing them in the safety of the counselling session can help to facilitate change as the client can feel the difference in their body as well as intellectually.
I believe at the very core we are emotional beings who experience feelings as an adaptive mechanism to tell us what our needs and wants are. If our adult need for connectedness, validation and affection are not met then conflict will arise.
By connecting to our feelings, both secondary or surface feelings like guilt and frustration, as well as deeper primary feelings such as hurt, sadness, shame, anger and fear can allow us to discover our true needs and wants and change the ways we relate to ourselves and others.
Emotionally Focused Therapy adheres to the principles laid down by carl Rogers in his Person-Centred approach. At the heart of the person-centred approach is the belief that everyone is capable of solving their own problems and issues. The role of the therapist is therefore to ensure a supportive relationship develops between the client and counsellor allowing you to move towards a better sense of well being. Counsellors use their interpersonal skills to form a relationship with the client based upon respect, regard and an empathic awareness of what the client is going through.
Most counsellors, if not all, are well versed in the person-centred approach as it provides an important foundation for therapy to be successful. The importance of establishing a supportive therapeutic relationship cannot be overstated providing a safe starting point for the therapist to introduce other techniques and methods.