I want to tell you about EFT because it is now an important ingredient in my NLP Kids Practitioner Training course and in my kids coaching practice. It would not be an exaggeration to say that I use EFT with 90% of my clients – children, teens, mums and dads, couples and singles. Everyone gets the chance to connect to their feelings and clear those that block them from being who they want to be.
EFT developed out of TFT (Thought Field Therapy) which was discovered by Dr Roger Callahan in the 1980s when he was using the Chinese Meridian points with his patients, tapping on the meridian point that connected to their pain or illness. One of his students, Gary Craig further developed it by reducing the tapping points and creating a simple sequence which became known as the Emotional Freedom Technique in 1990. So whilst it is based on ancient Chinese medicine, the protocol is relatively new compared to NLP.
Whilst NLP would not be described as a ‘talking therapy’, like CBT of Counselling, EFT is an ‘energy healing modality’ which means that there is very little talking and what there is, is what we call ‘clean language’ because we use a series of questions to ‘set up’ the process and then just tap on the points and say the client’s words. We don’t even need to know what it is we are tapping with them on!
What I totally love about EFT though is the lack of story, the lack of content and how it goes straight to the pain, the grief, anger, sadness without the back story. These techniques enable us to work content - free (story – free) . There are a number of reasons why I might want to do this.
Clients who are totally into their head, all the chatter, the story, the ‘who did what and when’ and the history of the issue. My first thought is to start where you are right now. Start with the feeling about all of this story. “When you think of all this that you want me to know, what is the feeling, where is it in your body, what’s the colour?” and we get tapping.
This approach gets you into your subconscious mind connecting with the emotions. Working with mums, we need to get back to your own childhood to help you with your relationship with your children. This means there is a lot of story and the bit I need is buried in your subconscious mind. It will be about what you made something mean when they were too young to understand the story. The shock at the time sent you into ‘freeze’ and you formed that core belief that you then live out, attracting evidence of its truth throughout your life. Rather than hearing all these examples, it is much more efficient and respectful of your time, I feel, to get straight into the feeling and tap on those negative feelings to clear them.
It would be great to say that we can get rid of negative core beliefs in one session of tapping and we often can when we work with children as their belief was imprinted quite recently but for adults it will take more sessions, more time and many more visits to those early memories and the various different aspects of them.
Mums and dads and teachers are people of influence. What we say, matters. Sadly and completely unintentionally we say something in a moment of anger which may be completely unrelated to our child but because of the influence we have, they create in that moment a UDIN.
A UDIN is
For which we have - No strategy
When clients are in emotional overwhelm. You just don’t know what you feel any more. There are so many emotions and you can’t see a way forward. You will be tearful and tired, feeling like you can barely function. By using this approach, I can give you a tool you can use to manage the emotions as they come up.
Overwhelm happens more often with mums who come planning to address one issue and then find loads of other issues tumbling into the story, from childhood, perhaps their mum’s childhood or relationship issues they hadn’t planned to bring up.
When you need to work content-free EFT really comes into its own. This might be because a child or client doesn’t want to tell you the story itself. We can tap on
‘that thing that happened’
‘what I did’
‘what I said’
‘the thing I’m worried about’
What happens in an EFT session with me?
The first thing we do in any EFT session is to tune in.
1. Tuning in
Drink some water. Breathe. Put your hand on your heart and close your eyes.
Breathe in for 6 and out for 6. Imagine you’re breathing into your heart.
Do this three times.
Now thinking about the situation or issue on your mind,
- What’s the feeling or emotion?
- Where is it in the body?
- What colour is it?
- What shape, texture, size? (for size you can ask is it the size of a grape or a melon or….)
- Is it static or moving?
- Is there anything else about it?
2. Set up
We start by tapping on the karate chop point. This is the fleshy part of the hand at the side, between the base of your little finger and your wrist.
“Even though I feel this (name of emotion) in my (part of the body) I love and accept myself anyway
So tapping with the flat of your hand you use a reminder phrase. or Reminder phrase as you tap.
This (colour) (emotion)
All this (emotion)
Side of eye
Other side of eye
I usually do two rounds of tapping through the body points and then move through the hand points because most of my clients are children and teens so they need to use these at school and around their friends as they can’t suddenly start tapping their head!
Hand points are
Across the wrist
Side of thumb
Side of index finger
Side of middle finger
Side of ring finger
Side of little finger
4. FinishingWe aim to get down to a SUDs level of zero but I sometimes stop at a 1 or 2 if you want me to. This is partly because children often want to keep a bit of anxiety in exam situations so they are not so laid back they run out of time! Some want to leave it at 1 or 2 because that feels enough of a shift to be getting along with right now, or they are just bored and want to do another activity!
I always go back through the process with them so they know what to do when they are on their own. Sometimes I send them a reminder video as well.
So if you are considering having an EFT session with me, you know what will happen and I hope you will book one soon. Remember my first 20 minute consultations are free.