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How Long Does It Take to See Results from Emotionally Focused Therapy?

There are so many kinds of therapy out there that it can be hard to know exactly what kind is best for you at a given time. What you choose can be based on whether it’s individual or couple therapy. It can change depending on how therapy itself can help you approach your problems. What you choose is also motivated by how long therapy will take.

It’s normal to want something to work quickly. Things nowadays move so fast and our lives are so busy that it can be hard to find time to focus on therapy long-term. No therapy can guarantee instant results, of course. But a couple of months of therapy is nothing compared to a couple of years, especially if the problems you seek to address are urgent.

If you’re looking for a type of couples therapy that can be addressed short-term, you might find yourself looking into Emotionally Focused Therapy. But what is it, and what does “short-term” therapy really mean?

Emotionally Focused Therapy

Emotionally Focused Therapy (EFT) was developed in the 1980s as a form of couples therapy designed to be relatively short-term. It was later adapted for family therapy as well once the results showed how impactful it could be.

The goal of EFT is to improve attachment within a relationship and help with bonding. The core work of EFT revolves around emotions, which explains its name. A lot of work revolves on identifying and naming emotions and on actually dealing with unpleasant feelings instead of ignoring them.

couple holding hands with only arms showing in photo

EFT has, according to some studies, a 70-73% recovery rate. That’s encouraging, especially when you know exactly how long it takes to start seeing results from it.

What Short-Term Therapy Means

As was previously mentioned, no type of therapy can offer instant results, but some do take less time than others to start affecting your life for the better. Plenty of studies show that after 8 sessions of EFT, you might start seeing results from it. But, here comes the tricky part—that might not be the case for everyone.

Therapy can take longer for some people. Some couples might start seeing results after 8 sessions. Others might need a little longer: 10, 12, or maybe even 20 sessions. And that’s perfectly okay.

Therapy isn’t a race to see who gets better faster, especially couples therapy. EFT is all about bonding with your partner and building better attachments between the two of you. And that may take longer depending on what kind of issues got you to seek EFT in the first place.

Still, EFT is considered a short-term therapy because it takes 8-20 sessions to start seeing results. That, compared to other types of therapy, is not a lot of time. Between its number of sessions and its recovery rate, EFT is an efficient type of therapy. But, the most important question is: is it the right kind of therapy for you?

What to Do Next

Now that you know what EFT is and how long it takes, you can decide for yourself whether it’s something you’d like to consider. 8-20 sessions isn’t a long time in therapy, and a 70% recovery rate is not insignificant. But at the end of the day, it all depends on what you think is best for yourself and for your partner.

If you’re looking for couples therapy that focuses on your emotions as well as your attachment to each other, then EFT might be for you. Don’t be afraid to schedule an appointment, no matter how daunting it may seem at first. All you need to do is show up and commit to the work to see results.

Click here for more information on Emotionally Focused Therapy.