Christian Therapy

EFT Externship

Offers a unique opportunity to incorporate key insights from Dr. Sue Johnson and Kenny Sanderfer’s recent book Created for Connection. - With Teri Murphy, PhD, LMFT

September 20th-23rd Session Details

A hands-on resource designed for Christian Couples



Who Should Attend

The externship is recommended to all professionals who counsel couples, including psychiatrists, psychologists, family physicians, social workers, psychiatric nurses, counselors, pastors and clergy, and students training in these professions.

See Marital distress from an attachment perspective, help partners reprocess the emotional responses that maintain marital distress, shape key new interaction and bonding events and overcome therapeutic impasses.

The externship is recommended to all professionals who counsel couples, including psychiatrists, psychologists, family physicians, social workers, psychiatric nurses, counselors, pastors and clergy, and students training in these professions.

Learning Objectives

  • Participants will obtain a clear understanding of the basic experiential and systemic concepts of an “Emotionally Focused” approach to therapy.

  • Participants will be able to view clients in the web of their interpersonal attachments and conceptualize relationship distress and repair based on theories of attachment and emotion.

  • EFT is a relational therapy. The Externship will focus on the general model of EFT as laid out in the 2019 book, Attachment Theory in Practice, and teach the model as implemented in couple and individual therapy sessions.

  • Participants will develop skills in sharing and maintaining an engaged, open and collaborative alliance with clients.

  • articipants will develop skills in the 5 moves of the basic macro-intervention – the EFT Tango – in order to change patterns of affect regulation, models of self and other, strategies for engaging others and interactional patterns.

  • Participants will develop skills in EFT micro interventions taken from experiential and systemic models of intervention.

  • Participants will develop skills in overcoming common blocks and impasses in all three therapy modalities and so shaping core corrective emotional experiences that lead to constructive dependency and what Rogers termed ‘existential living.’

  • Describe 3 modalities of EFT therapy from the perspective of attachment science – EFIT, EFCT and EFFT.

  • Describe 5 features of relationship distress.

  • Describe 2 causes of relationship distress.

  • Describe 7 basic features of Attachment Theory.

  • Identify 3 ways attachment theory informs working with couples, families, and individuals in EFT.

  • Explain 2 key features of each of the systemic and experiential elements of EFT.

  • Discuss 7 key features of the macro interventions of EFT, called the EFT Tango.

  • Describe 3 change factors involved in moving from distress to recovery.

  • Identify the 3 Stages and 9 process Steps of EFT.

  • Demonstrate 2 ways that basic empathy and reflection of inner and between dramas are central to the therapeutic process in EFT.

  • Identify and demonstrate 3 basic assessment skills in EFT.

  • Describe and demonstrate 4 skills to create a therapeutic alliance: empathic attunement, validation, acceptance, genuineness.

  • Discuss 2 applications of the EFT Tango in Stage 1 of EFT.

  • Demonstrate 1 way to enter the experience of partners to find out how each construct his/her experience of their relationship.

  • Demonstrate 2 skills to track and frame the sequences of interaction that perpetuate distress and disconnection.

  • Discuss 2 ways to describe a couple’s negative cycle of interaction (e.g., pursue/withdraw) while emphasizing attachment needs such as closeness, connection, fear of loss.)

  • Identify 3 aspects of assessment, using the EFT Tango with individuals in Stage 1.

  • Identify 4 ways that systemic and experiential theories that underlie EFT interventions.

  • Identify and demonstrate at least 3 basic EFT interventions for assembling and deepening emotion, such as reflection, validation, evocative responding, empathic conjecture, and heightening.

  • Demonstrate how to use 4 elements of RISSSC to heighten emotional experience.

  • Identify and discuss 4 elements of facilitating Stage 2 encounters (distilling, deepening, disclosing, processing – Tango Moves 2, 3 and 4 combined).

  • Describe 2 ways the interventions combine to facilitate change events.

  • Describe 3 change events in EFT for couples: de-escalation, withdrawer engagement and pursuer softening.

  • Discuss 3 skills to evoke, assemble, and deepen the emotional experience

  • Demonstrate 2 skills for facilitating acceptance (Move 4 of the EFT Tango).

  • Identify and explain 1 Stage 2 change event using enactments / encounters.

  • Assess 5 of the EFT Tango moves as applied to individuals in EFIT.

  • Explain 1 defining feature of an attachment injury from an attachment theoretical perspective.

  • Identify 4 steps of interaction toward resolving attachment injuries and rebuilding trust.

  • Describe 3 key interventions with escalated couples.

  • Critique 2 key elements in the EFT approach to managing comorbidities such as depression and sexual dysfunction.

  • Plan 4 elements of the process for becoming an EFT Therapist that have personal relevance.

Teri Murphy, PhD, LMFT

Teri Murphy, PhD, LMFT is a licensed marital and family therapist in private practice in Franklin, Tennessee. Teri is a Certified Therapist, Supervisor, and Trainer-in-Training in Emotionally Focused Therapy. She also supervises clinicians toward state licensure as an AAMFT-approved supervisor.

A former bona fide rocket scientist, Teri shifted from creating future space systems to helping couples, individuals, and families in therapy create secure attachment with God, themselves, and their most important relationships.

Teri has written articles for The Tennessean, Bedlam Magazine, and Venn Magazine, presents at professional conferences, and coaches mental health professionals in their group and private practices.

While away from the office, you’ll find Teri reading, practicing yoga, gardening, and spending time with her partner, Chris, and two teen children.