When: Mondays, October 18, 2021; November 8, 2021; November 29, 2021; and December 13, 2021; 12-3:15 ET
Where: On Zoom
Instructor: Gail Palmer, MSW, RMFT
Rates: Early Bird applies until 9/27/21
Regular Rate Full – $450, Regular Rate Early Bird – $425; Student/Agency Clinician Rate* Full — $375, Student/Agency Clinician Rate* Early Bird — $350; Equity Rate** Full — $350, Equity Rate** Early Bird — $325
Additional Rate for CEs: $25
CEs: 12 CEs approved for LMFTs, LICSWs, LMHCs, and Lic. Psychologists
Target Audience: Marriage & Family Therapists, Social Workers, Mental Health Counselors, Psychologists

Emotionally Focused Family Therapy (EFFT) is an attachment-based approach that combines both systemic and experiential interventions to mend broken bonds and heal fractured families. EFFT therapists focus on the emotional experience within a family and the problem patterns that block family members from accessing the resources they would otherwise share. A primary goal of EFFT is to reduce problematic behavior by creating new patterns of emotional accessibility and responsiveness that offer a secure base for children to develop and families to thrive. EFFT provides a practical approach to engaging families at an emotional level. Accessing, processing, and connecting family members through the power of emotional experience promotes healing and fosters a family’s resilience to the everyday and unexpected challenges of life.

This workshop demonstrated how the EFT model of working with couples is extended and modified to fit the family context. Attention was given to how EFT practice with families is different and what additional skills are needed. For example, how to process parental blocks to emotional accessibility and responsiveness while also keeping the child safe will be a dynamic addressed. Participants learned a powerful transformative approach that is foundational in helping parents and children who are struggling with remaining securely attached.

This workshop was open to all mental health professionals with an interest in working with families. Prior training in Emotionally Focused Training (EFT) is helpful but not required.

At the conclusion of this program, participants were better able to:

  1. Describe 2 features of family distress using theories of emotion and attachment
  2. List 2 key practices of EFFT that differ from EFT work with couples
  3. Identify the 3 stages and markers of change in the EFFT approach
  4. Identify 2 therapist practices that promote a working alliance with parents and children
  5. Describe 2 strategies for strengthening parental ownership of the EFFT process
  6. Describe 3 key interventions common to processing attachment related affect
  7. Examine 1 5-step sequence for accessing and working with emotion in family relationships
  8. Analyze 2 parent child interactions using EFT practices to work through specific relational blocks
  9. Describe 2 strategies to successfully choreograph enactments used to restructure new patterns of interaction between parents and children
  10. Explain 3 ways that secure attachment relates to family patterns of resilience

Schedule (all times in ET)
October 18, 2021
12-1:30pm Introduction: Attachment, Emotion, and the Family System
1:30-1:45pm Break
1:45-3:15pm Attachment and Family Therapy: Emerging Models of Family Treatment

November 8, 2021
12-1:30pm Overview of Emotionally Focused Therapy and Families
1:30-1:45pm Break
1:45-3:15pm EFFT: Assessment and Alliance Building

November 29, 2021
12-1:30pm EFFT: Processing Patterns of Distress from the Inside Out
1:30-1:45pm Break
1:45-3:15pm EFFT: Changing Family Patterns

December 13, 2021
12-1:30pm EFFT: Enactments and the Power of Emotional Engagement
1:30-1:45pm Break
1:45-3:15pm EFFT: Stage 3: Consolidation and Promoting Resilience

Gail Palmer, MSW, RMFT is one of the Founding Members of the Ottawa Couple and Family Institute and Co-Director of the International Center of Excellence in Emotionally Focused Therapy. She holds a Masters degree in Social Work and is a Registered Marriage and Family Therapist in Canada. Over the past 30 years, Gail has worked closely with Dr. Sue Johnson, creator of Emotionally Focused Therapy, and is an experienced supervisor and trainer in EFT. She currently offers workshops, externships, and core skills trainings to mental health professionals in a variety of different settings across the world. She chairs the ICEEFT Education Committee and is responsible for mentoring and training EFT trainers internationally. Gail is an adjunct faculty member at Wilfrid Laurier University in Waterloo, Canada and a sessional lecturer at Oxford University, Oxford, England.

Gail has a particular interest in applying the model with work with families. For the past decade, she has been one of the lead EFT trainers who have developed and expanded on Sue Johnson’s EFFT method. The definite text co-authored by Gail Emotionally Focused Family Therapy: Restoring Connection and Promoting Resilience is now available. Gail’s work has included EFFT trainings across North America, Europe, and Australia/New Zealand, presentations at EFT summits, workshops at the Networker and AAMFT, publications in the EFFT workbook and casebook, articles in professional journals and the ICEEFT newsletter. Professionally, Gail’s primary passion is to help therapists who are both new to EFT and trained in EFT, to bring the powerful interventions and skills of this model to the family therapy room.

*Agency Clinician/Student Rate: We offer this discounted rate to enable students and clinicians working in community mental health settings on a full-time basis to be able to participate. Group practices are not eligible.

**Equity Rate: This registration option is for participants with historical/institutional barriers to access. Please choose equity pricing only if you are a member of one or more historically marginalized communities.

This activity is approved by the International Centre of Excellence for Emotionally Focused Therapy (ICEEFT).

CE Sponsorship Info:

This activity is certified by the New England Association for Family and Systemic Therapy (NEAFAST) on behalf of the Massachusetts Board of Registration of Allied Mental Health & Human Services Professions for LMFT professional continuing education.

This activity is certified by the The Massachusetts Mental Health Counselors Association (MaMHCA) on behalf of the Board of Registration of Allied Mental Health & Human Services Professions for LMHC/LPC professional continuing education.

This activity is certified by the The National Association of Social Workers Massachusetts Chapter (NASW-MA) on behalf of the Board of Registration of Allied Mental Health & Human Services Professions for LICSW/LCSW professional continuing education.

This activity is certified by Amego, Inc. (DBA Amego Prepare) on behalf of the American Psychological Association for Licensed Psychologists.


NOTE: It is the participant’s responsibility to check with their state boards to determine CE requirements and rules of reciprocity, i.e. to assess whether out-of-state and/or APA-approved certificates can be accepted.

This program is being offered independent of any commercial support or conflict of interest. Clinicians with any level of experience are welcome to participate.

See our Cancellation and Grievance Policies