The intent of the Certification process is to validate and welcome competent EFT Therapists in addition to providing mentoring on areas where their work can grow. Applying for certification is a labor-intensive process during which it is anticipated that applicants may learn and grow as EFT Therapists. The application process thus becomes another element in the learning process. For therapists who do not meet the criteria for Certification, the intent is to provide clear and helpful feedback on specific areas where their work needs to improve and provide—when possible—a positive mentoring experience rather than the experience of failure. In these circumstances, typically another video is requested, which will be reviewed at no further cost.
Certification should not be considered as the end of one’s EFT journey, but rather a milestone in the lifelong and continued growth process for therapists.
Applicants are asked to provide two therapy excerpts, one from Stage One and a second from Stage Two. The emphasis for certification is the therapist’s use of the EFT Tango to process emotion and create bonding conversations.
Therapists need to show competence in relational dyads to receive certification. Applicants are asked to provide two therapy excerpts, one from Stage 1 and a second from Stage 2, with a focus on the moves of the EFT Tango. The Stage 1 excerpt and the Stage 2 excerpt must be from a couple therapy session.
The excerpts are to be a total of 20 minutes. If you want the reviewer to review certain segments of the same session, please submit the entire session and indicate the minute times of the excerpts to be reviewed.
Excerpts are to be video sessions. Zoom sessions are acceptable. Audio sessions are not acceptable and will only be accepted in exceptional circumstances with written permission from the ICEEFT certification team.
A case conceptualization for each client in the video excerpt(s) is to be submitted and should include a summary of presenting problem, attachment history, cycle, case progress to date, and therapist self reflections – see below for further information.
General Therapeutic Skills
A successful candidate must demonstrate the following basic experiential therapy skills:
1. Attunement to each client.
2. Validation and normalization of client’s secondary and primary core emotions and, where possible, their behaviors against the specific backdrop of attachment-related emotion.
3. Ability to make sense of each individual’s reactivity and negative coping mechanisms (emotions and behaviour), in light of their attachment-related experience.
4. Ability to validate one client without invalidating the other (in couple and family therapy).
5. Alliance building and maintenance with clients.
6. Ability to focus a session and deal with exits and blocks.
Stage One Video
A successful candidate will show the EFT Tango in the Stage One video segment:
In general, the therapist will demonstrate micro EFT skills such as reflection that orders each client’s emotional experience and links inner distress to interactional patterns and attachment meanings. Your Stage One clip should demonstrate accessing and processing emotions within the context of a negative interaction pattern. It is important to show that you know how to access emotion in the moment, know how to organize it within a pattern, and know how to use emotional experience between parts of self, partners or families. The focus is relational and on patterns.
In terms of the EFT Steps the example should include a Step 3 focus on accessing underlying emotion with one or both partners and enacting this more vulnerable experience, either directly to the partner or by proxy through the therapist. The 20-minute segment should demonstrate at least 3 moves of the EFT Tango (e.g. Moves 1, 2, and 3; or Moves 1, 2, and 5).
Reflecting present process with inquiry into patterns of affect regulation and interactions with others (Move 1), assembling emotion noting some, or all, of the following elements: cue, appraisal/perception, body response, meaning making, and action tendency so that core emotion begins to emerge (Move 2) Shaping interactional enactments (Move 3).
Tango Move 3 is with key figures in dramas that have shaped identity and affect regulation or with disowned or fragmented parts of self and can be either enacted directly or by proxy. Where possible Moves 4 and 5 of the Tango will also be demonstrated. In Stage One, there may not be an opportunity or there may be too much escalation to show an enactment, so the focus may be on Moves 1 and 2 of the Tango in order to help regulate and validate each partner, and the Move 5 organizes and gives structure and an alternative meaning to the reactivity.
The therapist will successfully set up a Stage One enactment that increases accessibility, responsiveness and engagement, expanding the clients’ sense of self and ability to engage with others in a more emotionally balanced manner.
A non‐successful candidate may demonstrate one or more of the following:
1. Failure to attune to clients.
2. Does not pace themself with clients and is intervening in ways that do not resonate with where the clients are in their experience.
3. A reliance on teaching, coaching, advising, or problem‐solving.
4. Does not actively assemble or deepen emotion in session.
Stage Two Video
Your Stage Two clip should demonstrate deepening and distilling a partner’s emotional experience associated with their position (e.g., pursuer, withdrawer). The example should show a depth of emotional experience that includes a focus on attachment related emotions (e.g., fears, longings) and includes a focus on view of self and/or view of other.
A successful candidate will show the EFT Tango in the Stage Two video segment, assembling and deepening primary emotion in the here and now of the session and working with the emotion in the following ways:
a) Staying with the emotion and allowing for expanding, deepening, distilling the emotional experience, and anchoring in the body.
b) Fostering clients’ awareness of fears and longings related to models of self and other.
c) Supporting and helping clients to synthesize this experience and, in couple and family therapy, helping them to communicate this as a clear message to their partner/family member.
d) Setting up and processing enactments.
e) Optional: Move the new emotional experience to a grounded expression of longings and needs as in withdrawer re‐engagement and pursuer softening in couple therapy, and shape similar corrective emotional experiences in individual therapy.
In terms of the EFT Steps, the example should include a Step 5 and 6 example where new experience of self and/or other is experienced and then shared with one’s partner. The 20-minute segment should include and enactment and at least 3 moves of the EFT Tango (e.g. Moves 2, 3, 4)
What is most important in Tango Move 2 is that you are bringing together:
– Attachment emotions such as attachment fears;
– Unmet attachment longings;
– Internal working models (View of Self – connecting past to present, View of Other)
Videos need to show Tango Move 3 (engaged encounters/enactments) in Stage Two, remembering that it is this new, qualitatively different interaction that is the healing agent.
A non‐successful candidate may demonstrate one or more of the following:
1. Talking about emotion only from a cognitive distance.
2. Teaching about emotion as opposed to fostering experience.
3. Therapist not using RISSSSC.
4. Failure to attune to clients.
5. Failure to demonstrate Moves 2, 3 and 4 of the EFT Tango
Occasionally applicants may be asked to submit a second excerpt of therapy. This request may be made if, for example, the therapist did not set up an enactment or the clients were not engaging in emotion but rather talking about emotion from a cognitive distance.
Case Description and EFT Conceptualization
Here we are also looking for key elements. We are looking for an understanding of the client(s)’ history from an attachment perspective, and of what brought them in for therapy.
We want the applicant to be able to describe the clients’ distress and how, in couple therapy, each partner engages with each other, including the triggers (cues) that begin the distress, the clients’ action tendencies and associated primary and secondary emotions.
The therapist will describe the attachment histories of their clients and might be able to speculate on the clients’ attachment styles, including the models of self and other. We expect the applicant to describe the course of therapy along with any change events, if applicable. Optimally, the applicant may include therapist self‐reflections.