Energy Psychology and Emotional Freedom Technique
There are two types of EFT: Emotionally Focused Therapy, a therapy for couples and Emotional Freedom Technique, a more energy-based processing therapy for individuals needing to release stuck emotions. While both are great modalities, I am only trained in and use the Emotional Freedom Technique.
EFT goes beyond talk therapy by honing in on the emotions, somatic sensations (emotions felt by the body), and details of the memory. Once you identify that information, you tap on points on the body to release the emotions and energy carried in the body, therefore desentizing the emotional wounds of the past and present. Although it may feel unusual to start tapping on your body in a therapy session, it is only used because of its effectiveness.
There are many energy-based psychologies, however of these therapies, EFT has the most credibility. Energy based psychologies focus less on cognition and more on the body including chakras, meridians, and the biofield. I recommend the use of EFT for those who wish to have an additional skill outside the therapy office. It is a very helpful approach to calming the mind and body for those experiencing high stress in their lives. It is also an appropriate clinical tool for those who may wish to process their trauma experiences in a clinical setting.
Some may wonder what the difference is between EFT and EMDR. There are as many similarities as there are differences. While both are wonderful for desensitizing trauma memories, EMDR seems to be more of an analytical way of processing while EFT is a more somatic way of processing. Some individuals may find a preference for one over the other, but ultimately they should always follow and go with the recommendation of their therapist. Currently EMDR is evidence-based while EFT is evidence-supported. EFT is however based from Thought Field Therapy, which is listed as an evidence-based practice through the NREPP.
To be able to bring EFT to my practice, I have completed EFT Professional Skills 1 and EFT Professional Skills 2 through the Association of Energy Psychology. While there are many organizations that may teach EFT, the ACEP is the only organization that trains approaches EFT with scientific study. It is also more focused on training EFT for professionals such as acupuncturists, clinical therapists, physicians, chiropractors, dentists, nurses, et cetera.
Anyone can be trained in EFT and anyone can practice EFT on their own. For those who wish to use it for more clinical concerns such as depression, PTSD, or anxiety, it is recommended EFT only by used with a licensed therapist.