This article looks at the many positive benefits and transformational potential of a self help therapy tool that combines a variety of alternative practices; a practical physical and mental tool known as tapping or more commonly known as ETF (emotional freedom techniques). It is a free self-help therapeutic tool and method that can be used to expand our emotional freedom and also used to alleviate emotional distress, and is often used in helping aid other therapies for issues such as anxiety, depression, and PTSD and some other conditions.
The regular practice of the EFT technique as a wellness tool can benefit our lives greatly. Speaking from personal experience, it is a wellness tool that I feel has transformed my life since incorporating it into my daily routine. It can help us to overcome obstacles in our lives by helping us eliminate and tackle our negative thought paths and behaviours, and it can be used to overcome fear and anxiety, allowing us to realise our dreams and achieve our goals.
What is tapping?
Tapping is also known as EFT (emotional freedom technique) or psychological acupuncture according to Gary Craig, who developed the technique in 1995. He discovered that by tapping the meridian points on different parts of the body it was possible to balance energy, something that would become recognised as an alternative treatment for alleviating issues connected with physical pain and emotional distress.
It is a therapeutic self-help technique that is of no cost and which can be used in a variety of settings whether these be therapy based or as a tool to aid in building our emotional resilience, mental wellness, physical health or to help eradicate negative thought processes and patterns of behaviour.
How does tapping work?
By drawing on a combination of techniques from numerous alternative therapies that include combining ancient Chinese acupuncture techniques for physiological symptoms, Emotional Freedom Techniques draws on a few alternative therapies practises and the use of psychological techniques that are teeming with positive benefits and can physically alter the brain, your energy system and issues with the body all at once – making it a very powerful tool to be equipped with. Furthermore, it is a simple technique that can be done anytime, anywhere, making it useful in a variety of situations.
People who use this alternative treatment believe that it is possible to tap various meridian points which are a concept in Chinese medicine and which are believed to be where energy follows in the body. In this theory, people believe that blockages or imbalances in these areas of the body in regards to energy can result in health issues and that tapping the meridian points with the fingertips can restore the energy and alleviate emotional and physical issues. Talking to overcome the issue while tapping the points will shift and begin to transfer energy to alleviate traumatic memories or patterns in behaviour and to lessen the physical pain, and acts as a tool to short circuit ourselves, in turn rewiring our systems.
It is easy to practise the EFT self-help tool, however it tends to have the greatest benefit and most positive effects on those experiencing emotional or physical distress with more severe physiological symptoms, where it can be used as a tool to alleviate these issues.
Such symptoms may include sweating, chest pain and stomach pain. EFT can help to eradicate the physical symptoms in order to clear these physiology responses, allowing you to focus on emotional resilience by forcing you to confront the deeper issues that create your fears and anxieties. This will help you become more in control of situations that overwhelm you and can cause fear and anxiety, which in turn aids you in becoming better equipped to deal with them. By harnessing the positive benefits of this technique to shift physical symptoms and alleviate your mental anxieties, you are able to clear your mind in order to focus on the root of your issue with anxiety.
How to tap – a five-step guide.
Before the session, it is best to first identify the issue or the problem that wants to be solved. Try to concentrate on one issue at a time to maximise the effectiveness of the technique.
Secondly, it is best to rate the issue and its severity and intensity by using a numbered scale of 0 to 10, where ten is the most difficult the issue has ever been. This acts as a guide for the person to be able to decide how effective the tapping treatment has been at the end of the treatment.
Thirdly the person should decide on a simple reminder phrase to repeat while tapping on the karate chop point. This point is at the centre of the fleshy outer part of the hand.
This reminder phrase should acknowledge the issue and convey self-acceptance despite it. For example a person may choose to say.
“Even though I have this issue I deeply and completely accept myself.”
There are a variety of EFT set up statements to use.
The fourth part of the process is the importance of the sequence of actions and repeating the sentence that has been chosen.
Where are the meridian points on the body? How do I tap?
There are many guides and resources in regards to this practise, however a typical EFT tapping session and points on the body only requires the use of the fingertips to lightly to tap certain points of the body.
The process usually starts with the karate chop point of the hand which is located at the outer edge of the hand just below the pinky finger. Using two or four fingers from the opposite hand, tap this spot five to several times, then progress by tapping on the same side of the body.
The tapping points for EFT are as follows.
- The top of the head directly in the centre of the head, the beginning of the eyebrow just above and to the side of the nose.
- The side of the eye-on the bone under the eye precisely one inch under the pupil.
- Under the nose, under the chin.
- Beginning of the collarbone.
- Under the arm.
After tapping the underarm point finish the sequence at the top of the head meridian point.
While tapping these points repeat the reminder phrase to maintain focus on the problem area that you wish to treat. Recite this phrase at every tapping point and repeat this two to three times.
The last step would be to test out the effectiveness of the tapping session by rating the intensity level using the 0-to 10 scale mentioned in step two of the process and comparing it to the starting intensity level at the beginning of the session. If you have not reached the 0 level. repeat the practise.
I would recommend trying out this practise with patience and time and would love to find out how effective it is for you if you have not tried it but do feel free to share your experiences in the comments with your experience on the practise of tapping.