I'm pleased to offer this blog for education and support using a self-help tool called EFT, Emotional Freedom Technique. I'm also pleased to offer EFT sessions to those who are interested in trying it or practicing it. EFT helps to connect thoughts and feelings to movement and the physical body so you can:
* relieve stress and anxiety
* move through emotional and/or physical discomfort
* release self-sabotaging patterns
* process childhood trauma safely and effectively
* replace non-productive beliefs with life-serving ones
EFT, also called meridian tapping or energy tapping, is considered a form of energy psychology. The process focuses on tapping on a variety of subtle meridian energy points throughout the body while we acknowledge the problem or issue and say out loud or silently, "I completely love and accept myself."
For many, including myself, EFT can fit nicely into a modern-day lifestyle where forgetting to 'check in' --to assess what we're thinking and feeling in any given moment-- is epidemic.
Recently, for example, I was feeling lots of fear over my family's finances. I had lots of bills due: food to buy; electric, water, phone, taxes, car and house payments looming. I didn't know how I was going to make ends meet. So I began tapping. Using my index, middle and ring fingers of my left hand, I tapped on the fleshy area of my right hand just below the pinky, which is the karate chop point. Then I began to say out loud to myself:
1. Even though I'm worried about our finances, I completely love and accept myself.
2. Even though I don't know how I'm going to make it all work, I deeply love and accept myself.
3. Even though I feel this intense fear in my stomach over our finances, I deeply and completely love and accept myself.
After tapping on the karate chop point and saying the phrases, I began to feel a little better. I would have rated my fear when I first started a 10, on a scale of 0 to 10, with 10 being the most intense. Now, it was about a 9. So I continued tapping on 8 other meridian points: above the eye, side of the eye, under the eye, under the nose, on the chin, collarbone, under the arm, and on the top of the head. But this time I shortened my phrases to “this fear over our finances," and "this fear in my stomach over our finances." At each of the 8 points, I lightly tapped about 5 to 7 times while alternately saying the two reminder phrases.
Done now with one round of tapping, I took a deep breath. At this point, the fear had decreased to about a 3 on the scale. And with this tangible relief from my fear, I was able to revisit our money situation. This time, I could see a way to make the money we had coming in balance with the money going out. In the midst of my fear state, I couldn't see a way out.
EFT's ability to transform situations
This one example demonstrates what makes EFT so powerful. It helps zero in on the discomforts in life, moving through and beyond them, to a natural state of relief emotionally, physically and mentally. When we are in this relief or calm state, we are more open to new ideas, thoughts and feelings that better serve us in the moment.
How does it work?
EFT helps remove the layers that often build up when we avoid or resist dealing with negatively perceived events in our lives, for whatever reason. This avoidance or resistance is largely responsible for keeping us stuck in old, non-productive belief patterns. In the money example above, the non-productive thought and feeling pattern that stood out as my beliefs sounded something like this: “I can't do it.” “There's never enough money.” “I'm tired of this.” “I can't take it anymore.” “No matter how hard I try, it's not good enough."
EFT can help you move through negative repetitive thoughts and feelings to a point where they morph into new thoughts and feelings, which over time become the beliefs you are choosing for yourself. When I was done tapping, I no longer felt any of those statements above. Instead, I felt calm. I still didn't know the solution to our budget woes, but I was feeling much better about taking another look at the numbers.
Why would I use EFT?
Studies show it is our repetitive negative thoughts and feelings, which are our beliefs, that keep us locked in self-sabotaging patterns, patterns we are often unaware of in any given moment. Researchers have discovered we operate 95 percent of the time from the unconscious beliefs we accepted without question in the first six years of life.
Through no fault of our own, or others before us, these beliefs are often not true. For instance, if you perceived in the first six years of your life that you were not good enough no matter how hard you tried, there is a high chance you may not remember you perceived that back then, now that you are an adult.
However, advances in biology and physics show the beliefs we learned in the first six years are imprinted in our DNA, imprinted at a cellular level, stored as memories on an energetic level, and are functioning as the building blocks of who we think we are. As research shows, thoughts and feelings are energy, electrical pulses that in repetition creates the life we are leading, whether we realize it or not.
The tricky part is even if we are aware of a belief that doesn't serve us, the way to replace that old belief with a new one isn't through trying to "think" positive. That's a function of the conscious mind. And research shows the conscious mind is unable to affect what's in the unconscious or subconscious mind.
In other words, by way of our biological and energetic make up, you may believe some group of thoughts and feelings in your subconscious mind without realizing just how often you make choices, react and interact according to those beliefs. It's called our automatic pilot, a process out of the grasp of our conscious mind in any given moment, especially in the hurried and harried world we live in.
EFT blends ancient energy wisdom around acupuncture, and modern-day psychology, to slow down our thoughts and feelings long enough for us to give our attention to them. By shining this light on our thoughts and feelings while we tap on subtle meridian energy points throughout the body, we are able to see and feel through the thought and feeling patterns that keep us in discomfort. Giving our attention to these thoughts and feelings, while affirming we love and accept ourselves, as we lightly tap on the points, can do much towards clearing negative beliefs so that positive change comes naturally and feels authentic.
Using EFT in my own life continues to help me and my family move through a wide variety of issues, from beliefs rooted in deep fears, anxieties, anger and hurt to the emotions of preparing for a sports competition or moving through physical pain.
Naturally, my approach to EFT, which draws on the principles at http://emofree.com , is influenced by my own inner work, which began after my son was born in 1996. It was then I realized the importance of giving myself permission to grieve, to cry and rage safely, for what had happened to me in childhood.
As a result, I have employed many emotional processing tools over the years, some of which I mention in the About Me section of my blog. Others I will share more of in upcoming blog posts. But what I love about EFT is its flexibility to blend well with a variety of understandings, approaches, and techniques, all of which contain the same key element: unconditional love.
With the tool of EFT and what I bring to the blend, I look forward to working together with others who are interested in discovering their own inner strength.
If you are interested in a session or a series of sessions, please email me at firstname.lastname@example.org
For price information, please see 'My view of money' posted on March 15th.