Cycle versus the Heart of the Matter

Paul Sigafus

A wonderful resource from Colorado’s own Paul Sigafus, EFT Therapist and Supervisor, he presents an effective image and way of approaching the “negative cycle” in couple’s therapy.

Paul captures the emotional turmoil, the dilemma, that occurs when a couple’s negative emotional interactional dance covers up their vulnerability and longing for closeness.

We are grateful to him for this contribution to understanding couples distress.   We understand the negative dance, or cycle, as a real phenomenon.  Couples interactions evolve to be more rigid.  Typically, one partner moves towards the other wanting closeness, openness and responsiveness.  The other partner tends to be more withdrawn, less open and seeks connection through proximity and getting along.  The positions rigidify slowly over time, until a couple looks quite polarized in a therapist’s office.

Paul’s image provides a research for both:

  1. Therapists to be able to conceptualize this process.
  2. Couples to have an image to go with their experience of distress and distance.

Click below to view a larger image of Paul’s Diagram


paul sigafus