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Drawing on cutting-edge research on adult attachment--and providing an innovative roadmap for clinical practice--Susan M. Johnson argues that psychotherapy is most effective when it focuses on the healing power of emotional connection. The primary developer of emotionally focused therapy (EFT) for couples, Johnson now extends her attachment-based approach to individuals and families. The volume shows how EFT aligns perfectly with attachment theory as it provides proven techniques for treating anxiety, depression, and relationship problems. Each modality (individual, couple, and family therapy) is covered in paired chapters that respectively introduce key concepts and present an in-depth case example. Special features include instructive end-of-chapter exercises and reflection questions.
About the Author
Susan M. Johnson, EdD, is the leading developer of emotionally focused therapy (EFT). She is Professor Emeritus of Clinical Psychology at the University of Ottawa, Ontario, Canada; Distinguished Research Professor in the Marriage and Family Therapy Program at Alliant International University in San Diego; and Director of the International Centre for Excellence in Emotionally Focused Therapy. Dr. Johnson has been appointed to the Order of Canada, one of the country’s highest civilian honors. She is a recipient of the Family Psychologist of the Year Award from Division 43 of the American Psychological Association and the Outstanding Contribution to Marriage and Family Therapy Award from the American Association for Marriage and Family Therapy, among other awards. Dr. Johnson is the author of acclaimed books for professionals, including Attachment Theory in Practice and Emotionally Focused Couple Therapy with Trauma Survivors, as well as bestselling books for general readers, including Hold Me Tight and Love Sense.
"A lucid treatise on psychotherapy that will prove useful to students as well as experienced practitioners. Drawing deftly from the wisdom of such pioneers as John Bowlby, Carl Rogers, and Harry Stack Sullivan--and from significant empirical research in emotional and interpersonal phenomena--Johnson has written an outstanding work that will have an impact on our field for a great many years."--Irvin Yalom, MD, Professor Emeritus of Psychiatry, Stanford University
"This book is a magnum opus that finally gives therapists a practical and very readable guide to using EFT principles across psychotherapy modalities. Johnson has made a valuable contribution that can guide the therapist toward a theoretically integrated and powerful method of doing therapy with a wide variety of clinical cases. A 'must read.'"--John M. Gottman, PhD, The Gottman Institute, Seattle, Washington
"In this wise and fascinating book, Johnson combines her deep knowledge of attachment theory and research, her well-researched approach to therapy, and her many years of clinical and teaching experience to demonstrate how best to conceptualize and conduct successful, life-changing therapy with individuals, couples, and families. The book is true to the scientific literature, skillful in comparing EFT to other therapeutic approaches, beautifully written, and rich with engaging, moving case examples. It will captivate clinical professionals, graduate students, and anyone who wants to understand the central role of emotions and close relationships in all our lives."--Phillip R. Shaver, PhD, Distinguished Professor Emeritus of Psychology, University of California, Davis
"Johnson, one of the world's leading psychotherapists, has drilled down through research and years of clinical practice to describe the growing consensus on the crucial role of emotion regulation and interpersonal processes in psychotherapy, using attachment theory as a theoretical guide. Every therapist and therapist-in-training should be aware of this important perspective on what they do."--David H. Barlow, PhD, ABPP, Professor Emeritus of Psychology and Psychiatry and Founder, Center for Anxiety and Related Disorders, Boston University
"Moving beyond the frame in which she is best known--as a foremost couple therapist--Johnson expands her focus to explore the central role of attachment in human functioning and how a focus on attachment can promote successful psychotherapy. Johnson’s impeccable scholarship and extraordinary clinical acumen are evident throughout this marvelously written book. Filled with compelling and instructive case studies, this surely will become the go-to book about the practice of attachment-informed psychotherapy. It also immediately becomes the best source for learning about the application of EFT across individual, couple, and family therapy. The culmination of a lifetime of writing, presenting, and practice focused on emotion and attachment, this book should be read by every clinician and every student of psychotherapy."--Jay L. Lebow, PhD, ABPP, LMFT, Senior Scholar and Clinical Professor, The Family Institute at Northwestern University
"An excellent, most refreshing addition to the field. With wit, insight, and intellectual brawn, Johnson unpacks the key elements of attachment theory, shows how they have informed the development and elaboration of the groundbreaking EFT approach, and reveals the healing power of EFT in different therapeutic contexts. There are nuggets of brilliance and wisdom in every chapter."--Jeffry A. Simpson, PhD, Distinguished University Teaching Professor and Chair, Department of Psychology, University of Minnesota
"This powerful, well-argued book shows how the cacophony of the 'protocols for syndromes' era of evidence-based care can be managed by a broad theory that addresses not just the development of disorders but also how people function. Long an advocate for the centrality of emotion in psychotherapy, Johnson crafts a convincing case for the clinical usefulness of attachment theory and the benefits of EFT in addressing the difficulties that attachment problems can create. This book should be read by any clinician wanting to explore how well-validated models of functioning can enhance clinical science and practice. Highly recommended."--Steven C. Hayes, PhD, codeveloper of acceptance and commitment therapy; Foundation Professor of Psychology, University of Nevada, Reno
“Psychiatrists and psychologists in training today are faced with a veritable Tower of Babel of theoretical and clinical approaches. This book persuasively presents one way through the wilderness, based on Johnson’s sophisticated understanding of modern attachment theory. Comprehensive and scholarly yet eminently readable, the book is illustrated with compelling clinical material. The lesson for clinicians is always the same: Follow the emotion. Specific chapters can easily be used on their own in classes on individual, couple, or family therapy. This volume is sure to stand as the pinnacle of Johnson’s superb theoretical and clinical work--I highly recommend it for practitioners at every level.”--Peter Mezan, PhD, Department of Psychiatry, The Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai
"As one of the original developers of EFT, Johnson distills the core elements of the approach, puts it in an attachment framework, and explains why it can be seen as essentially an attachment-based intervention. The book is filled with clinical illustrations from the practice of a very experienced therapist. It provides an immensely readable introduction to and overview of EFT that will be useful to both novice and experienced therapists wanting to add these techniques to their repertoires."--Karin Ensink, PhD, School of Psychology, Université Laval, Quebec, Canada
"This book from Susan Johnson is an important and awaited addition to the field of emotionally focused therapy (EFT)….As always, Dr. Johnson meets and exceeds expectations….Dr. Johnson is an internationally acclaimed scholar and clinician who developed the field of EFT. She has received several awards for her research in couples’ therapy and is the author of numerous books used by mental health practitioners all over the world….Masterfully written, this book speaks to both the mind and the heart. Any practitioners interested in how to integrate attachment work into their clinical practice will find this an invaluable guide.” — Doody's Review Service