I remember the first time I heard about EFT (Emotional Freedom Techniques) and it seemed unbelievable to me, that being in control of your own emotions could be so simple. I also was sceptical about it really working, I thought “That can’t be true, do I really need nothing but to tap in certain points of my body to feel different about THIS THING?”. On the top of that, I could not believe that I could do this process on my own and almost everywhere. Twelve years later I keep on tapping whenever I need it, and I´m very thankful to the developer, Gary Craig (external link) for making Roger Callahan´s idea of “thought field therapy”(external link) so accessible and easy.
In this article I want to explain how to use EFT. In particular, I want to encourage you to use EFT, so that you get your power back, and so you become the master of your emotions. You can realise that you can decide if a situation is a problem or just something you have to “take care of” or “solve”. EFT is said to help with physical, emotional and performance issues, and in this article we will exstrongain the process so that you too can find relief
What is EFT – Emotional Freedom Techniques?
EFT is a combination between ancient Chinese acupressure (you will tap on the endpoints of the meridians [energy channels] on your body) and modern psychology (you will be thinking, or more accurately, repeating the issue that is disturbing you while you tap). The basis of EFT is that physical, mental and emotional problems both cause and result from disruptions to the energy field. By tapping on those points, you will restore the energy flow again.
How do I do EFT?
It’s quite easy to learn how to do EFT. There are six simple steps to follow:
- Choose an issue, something that is causing you discomfort right now. It can be anything, a physical pain, a feeling, an emotion or even a situation that is causing you troubles and you are not quite sure about your feelings about it. For example, a headache, anger towards someone or about something.
- Rate the intensity of this discomfort on a scale from 0 to 10, where 0 is like “I’m OK with this” and 10 is a very bad feeling about the issue. You can also be over 10 if the issue is really getting to you. The purpose of this step is for you to be able to control your progress with the tapping.
- Come up with the setup statement. The setup statement is a sentence that you will repeat while you tap on the first point and goes like this: “Even though… ISSUE… I deeply and completely love and accept myself.” This last part of the sentence is highlighted with bold letters because this is the most important part of it and the goal of EFT, is about loving and accepting yourself, no matter what happens within you or around you.
An example for a setup statement would be “Even though I have this terrible headache, I deeply and completely love and accept myself”. A sentence like this would be perfectly fine, but to make EFT more effective, describe the issue you’re tapping on, as detailed as possible. Use words that talk about the experience more than describing it as a mental concept (e.g. pain would be a mental concept. You can describe it as pressure, or pulsing, or heat…). If you are tapping on an emotion just do the same; go deeper into the emotion and ask yourself why you feel like this (e.g. I´m angry at my mother because she doesn´t listen to me). You setup statement in this example would be: “Even though I´m angry at my mother because she doesn´t listen to me I deeply and completely love and accept myself.”
- Localise the karate chop point (see picture) and begin to tap on it, while you repeat the setup statement 3 times.
- Keep on tapping on the next point (see picture) about seven to ten times, while you repeat the reminder phrase, which is only the issue (e.g. this terrible pressure in my head). Then move to the next point, tap for seven to ten times, then the next point, following this order:
– Inside the eyebrow, outside the eyebrow, under the eyes, under the nose, over the chin, under the collarbone, under the arm, all along the top of the head, thumb, index finger, middle finger and pinky finger.
This would be a complete round. The next thing to do is to rate the issue again (step 2) on the scale. If you feel it is three or less, you can do the next step, otherwise repeat the tapping sequence until you reach three or less, which would be like being okay with the issue.
- Has the situation stopped to be a problem? If yes, there is something you can do to lock in the benefits of EFT, to “save” the new information in your brain by balancing it. First take a deep inhale, exhale and start tapping on the Gamut Point (see picture) and do following actions while you´re still tapping the point:
- Close your eyes
- Open them
- Look down to the right without moving the head
- Look down to the left without moving the head
- Make a circle with your eyes clockwise
- Make a circle with your eyes counter-clockwise
- Hum a song for some seconds (it doesn´t have to be a real one)
- Count from 1 to 5
- Hum the song again
And that´s all. Simple, isn´t it? Whilst Emotional Freedom Techniques won’t solve your problems, it can help you to see yourself and your life with “different eyes”.
Some useful tips:
- If you feel anxious about a presentation, start tapping on it the night before, or earlier. You can then repeat the process just before you give the presentation. (Just tapping ten minutes before the presentation starts is less likely to really calm you down).
- Even though you can tap almost everywhere, it may be more effective if you are in a familiar, comfortable environment where you feel safe and you know you can relax.
- The more you tap, the easier it gets and the better it works. Practice!
- If you want to work on a big issue with EFT, it may be beneficial to look for a therapist that works with this technique and let her/him help you.
If you feel that EFT doesn´t work for you, don´t worry, there are plenty of other things you can do, including personalised life coaching. At La Crisálida Retreats we offer a number of different life makeover workshops as part of our life makeover retreat that can also help you if you´re struggling with some challenges in your life. We also have lots more articles on our blog page to read and try at home. So, go ahead and try it for yourself – let me know how you get on!