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When EFT Is Too Scary

Mar 23, 2008
Emotional Freedom Techniques (EFT) is helping thousands across the globe release physical and emotional issues faster than ever thought possible. It's simple tapping mechanism, based on ancient acupuncture points discovered by the Chinese, is accessible and free to learn. Targeting the body's subtle energy system, tapping releases the blocked meridian channels which present alongside emotional and physical complaints. Results are usually impressive.

Over several years EFT Practitioner experience, I've seen many clients with a myriad of different issues. Usually we make progress pretty quickly on the problem the client presents. Although magnitudes faster and more effective than conventional talk therapy, still most times several sessions are needed to make substantial progress, even with the most effective energy psychology protocols.

There are some times however when, say, after one session, the EFT client does not return for further treatment, even after making clear progress in just one session. Why would this be?

There are several possible answers, but change is scary for most of us. Sometimes when we see how quickly and powerfully EFT can help us make changes, we realise what we might miss if we let go of our old problems. Change always means letting go, and letting go means perhaps feeling a bit vulnerable or unsafe in the world while you adjust to your new sense of freedom or pleasure in life.

Choosing not to tap, whilst knowing the benefits, can also be a result of a fear of success (ironically in itself a tappable issue). If you begin EFT therapy and find yourself overwhelmed by what it might mean, ask yourself what happened the last time you were successful in a similar way? What associations from the past might be temporarily blocking your way with EFT? Usually by aiming tapping at these underlying issues they will release the path for therapy to continue.

A sense of "unsafety" or a lack of protection can also be behind an unwillingness to tap and make progress. Your unconscious mind only has your highest intention of protection and survival, and if EFT is exposing old emotional wounds, which your unconscious doesn't perceive as safe, it will throw up resistance in your path. Again, simply let your Practitioner know of these issues and begin tapping on them for release. The EFT process remains the same, regardless of the issue in question.

Another objection at an unconscious level can be identity. When faced with the prospect of change, many times we ask ourselves "who will I be without this [insert your problem]?". Most psychological issues we have are not a closed system, i.e. changing one thing in our emotional life usually changes several others. We become so used to our problems, we adapt our daily lives and ways of being around them, until they become a part of us. Sometimes, even loved ones and family members Around us can unwittingly reinforce the problem in their attempts to show love. e.g. losing your agoraphobia might mean having the physical labour of grocery shopping, making an effort to go places, etc. Again, all tappable issues with EFT.

We can thwart our own best efforts to change with any therapy if we think it might threaten our survival. But recognise that your reactions to change are reactions to past events and not real representations of true threats right in this moment. Change can be scary. But consider it growth. And with EFT, you have the tools to ease it in comfortably, right in your hands (literally).
About the Author
Stewart Robertson is an author, neuroscientist, and the principal Emotional Freedom Techniques Practitioner in Glasgow, Scotland. Uncover EFT from his freely available EFT audio session demo.
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