There is incredible opportunity now, in this time of upheaval and change, to create powerful healing not only for ourselves but for our planet as well. It’s important that we begin the healing with ourselves as individuals, and be aware of how we hide from and act out our own pain and fear. The more aware we are of our own issues, the more effective we are in helping others to clear theirs.
There are now ways of clearing out our own psychological closets that are so simple to learn and use that children can do them, yet so powerful that you can clear in a matter of minutes or hours what used to take months or years. These are a group of techniques that fall under the umbrella of “energy psychology” or “energy psychotherapy.” They utilize the energy system of the body – usually the meridians or the chakras – as the medium for healing and change.
In this article, you can learn to use one of the techniques for your own healing and well-being, and also learn how to use it on behalf of others. You’ll also learn an “instant short-cut” version of the technique, so you can use it anywhere, anytime.
All the techniques in this field are based on the assumption that any painful event is experienced first by the energy body, and then reverberates inward to reach the physical body, thoughts, and emotions. The shock or trauma of a painful event often creates blockages in one or more of the meridians, creating an undercharge or overcharge in others.
The resulting imbalance in energy flow creates what we experience consciously as the “symptom,” which may be emotional, psychological, physical, or some combination of all three.
Emotional Freedom Technique, or EFT, pioneered by Gary Craig from his work with Roger Callahan, Ph.D. (arguably the father of Energy Psychology), utilizes seven potent acupuncture points to gently rebalance the disrupted flow. When the proper flow is restored, the symptom disappears.
It seems almost too easy, too good to be true, and happens almost too fast for the conscious mind to catch up with what has happened. But I’ve seen the fantastic results it can bring over and over again with my clients, friends, kids, and myself. As a therapist, it’s gratifying to be able to help my clients in ways that didn’t used to be possible.
As a parent, it’s wonderful to be able to teach my kids something they can use to help themselves feel better. As a person, it’s a relief to be able to move myself out from stuck or painful places in such a gentle and powerful way. And as a citizen of the world, it’s extraordinary to be able to use the quantum aspects of this technique to facilitate healing on a non-local, global scale.
As simple as the technique is to learn and do, it works better the more you use it. It takes some time for your intuition to tune into the different level of healing that this technique uses, and for you to become accustomed to and trust the process. I’ve witnessed some people instantly “get it,” while others took a little more time. Trust yourself, and have fun with it!
The technique itself takes about 30 seconds to do:
1. Think of a problem. Make it as specific as possible – “This anger I feel toward Mary for what she said yesterday,” is better than “My divorce.” Understand that any pain or problem is going to have many aspects to it, like there are many pieces to a puzzle. It’s important to pick one piece of the puzzle at a time, and when that’s done, go on to the next one. If you like, rate each problem or puzzle piece on a scale of 0-10, with ten being the most intense. This can help you track its intensity.
2. With a couple of fingertips, tap on the fleshy outside of your hand (SI-3), while saying three times, “Even though I’m feeling this _____, I deeply love and accept myself anyway.” Feel free to be spontaneous and intuitive with this; just be loving and accepting of yourself, even if at that moment you don’t feel that way. This step alone is very powerful.
3. Focus on the problem (”this anger,” or whatever) and tap on these seven points (gently but firmly, about 5-7 times each):
* (Bl-2) Eyebrow – the beginning of either eyebrow, near the bridge of your nose.
* (GB-1) Side of the eye – on the bone, on the outer edge of either eye
* (St-1) Under the eye – on the bone, under either eye
* (GV-27) Under the nose, between the nose and upper lip
* (CV-24) Under the lip, on the crease between your lip and chin
* (K-27) Collarbone spot – from the notch at the base of your neck, go down about an inch and over about an inch
* (Sp-21) Under the arm – about 4 inches down from the armpit. On women, it’s where your bra strap usually hits; on men, it’s in line with your nipples.
4. Take a deep breath. Check with how that particular piece of the problem is feeling
5. If the intensity is still above a “0,” then do the sequence again, focusing on “the rest of the problem.”
6. When that aspect has disappeared, go on to the next aspect of the problem. Using the above example, your anger toward Mary may have disappeared, but hurt feelings may have come fast in its tracks. Or sadness. Or the memory of an earlier, similar experience. Just notice what comes up, and follow it through, using the EFT sequence on each part until you feel peace with whatever was bothering you.
There are no limits on what you can use EFT with. Trauma, anxiety, sadness, grief, love pain, stress, addictive cravings, depression, negative thoughts or beliefs, phobias, anger, rage, resentment, high blood pressure, irritable bowel syndrome, stuttering, food and environmental sensitivities and allergies, fear, peak performance issues, creativity blocks, relationship issues, guilt, shame, embarrassment, problems your animals may be having – the list is virtually endless. We really don’t know what the limits are yet, so try it on everything.
The important thing to remember is that many problems are multifaceted, and so you may need to be persistent. Chronic problems such as depression, addictions and some physical issues need to be tapped on every day, several times a day, until you feel long-lasting results.
With these complex problems, every time you do the EFT you release some of the energy that is keeping that energetic pattern together, and so after a certain point the pattern will simply collapse from the lack of energy to keep it going.
You can target emotions, thoughts, or sensations. You can target not knowing what to target. Start with what you notice. Sometimes a physical symptom or sensation will move around your body before it finally leaves altogether. Just follow it around, tapping on where it happens to be at that moment, until it disappears.
You can use EFT for yourself, of course, but also for others. For your kids, it’s nice to do the tapping on them while they lie or sit there. (My kids call this technique “Magic Tapping.”) If you know they are in pain but aren’t there with you – same is true for a friend, or even a pet – then use yourself as a surrogate and tap on your own body on their behalf.
Some people worry that this is invasive, but I assume that since the healing doesn’t come from me, I can let the One from whom the healing is coming make the call as to what is the highest good for all concerned.
It’s the quantum aspect of this technique that makes it so powerful, and so flexible. Since it doesn’t follow the mechanical laws of time and space, you can literally use it anywhere, anytime. You can tap on yourself as a young child, right when that terrible thing happened, and clear the energetic disruption right when it started.
You can tap on people when they are a thousand miles away. You can hold the Earth’s energetic pattern in your mind’s intention, and tap on the disruption there. It would be interesting to see what thoughts, feelings, and sensations come up as you do that. Be sure to take care of yourself in the process.
The quantum nature of the technique also makes it portable. If you don’t feel like tapping with your fingers in front of the person you’re conversing with, who is managing to push every button on your emotional switchboard, then as vividly as you can, tune into that particular feeling and imagine yourself tapping on those seven points. Light up those points in your mind like a neon sign. You can do this almost instantaneously.
An additional “instant” way of utilizing the quantum nature of this healing technique is to think of a word or phrase that represents healing to you. Firmly tell your unconscious (which will faithfully do whatever you tell it to do) that every time you focus on a particular problem or feeling, and you say your healing phrase, your unconscious will do the entire tapping sequence for you as if you were using your fingers to do it.
Furthermore, you tell your unconscious, it will do this for you every time, and it will be just as powerful and effective as if you were using your fingers to mechanically do the tapping on your face and body.
There are many other energy therapy techniques that work on similar principles. Trust your intuition – you really can’t do it wrong. Intention is everything. You may find that you have other points that feel good to you to tap on – by all means use them. Used with good intention and persistence, who knows what changes we can bring to our world with EFT?
About the author
Martha Delafield, LCSW, is a writer and psychotherapist in private practice outside of Chapel Hill. She can be reached at (919) 781-1707 or at firstname.lastname@example.org. For information about EFT, check out the EFT website at www.emofree.com.
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Originally posted 2006-08-26 10:39:48.
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