Emotional Freedom Technique, commonly known as tapping is an energy therapy where you “tap” on acupuncture/meridian points on the body to help relieve both emotional and physical pain. It can help with a variety of issues including anxiety, stress, panic attacks, anger, negative habits, fear, phobias, lack of motivation and trauma.
By tapping on these specific points on the head, face, chest and hands it allows energy blockages to be released. Once these blockages are cleared, you can feel different, both emotionally and physically.
The great thing about this therapy is that once you have learned the basics you can use it yourself in your own time and in your own space when necessary. Because of this, it is really effective for anxiety.
Having suffered with anxiety and panic attacks in my early twenties I used the “old fashioned method” of blowing into a paper bag! This was actually recommended by my Doctor at the time and having no other advice or input from anywhere else this is what I did! It did help but I was very conscious of having to carry a paper bag around with me let alone having to get it out in public to use when I had a panic!
As soon as I started training to be an EFT Practitioner it was clear to me that, had I known about this when I suffered with my anxiety and panic attacks it would have been such a valuable tool to have.
So how can EFT help with anxiety?
1. Regulates heart beat
Before you start any tapping, the therapy always starts with deep breathing. 3 deep breaths in through your nose and out through your mouth. By crossing your hands over your chest and taking your 3 deep breaths, it gives your body a sense of protection, that you will be taking care and making a change to how you are feeling. You can also feel the changes to your heartbeat. Concentrating on your breathing is probably the most effective and common way to start to reduce anxiety.
When looking at reducing your anxiety, with EFT, it’s important that you acknowledge the feeling you have before you begin to change it or reduce it. So, the first round of tapping will always be on how you feel initially in that moment.
Think about a sentence, word, feeling or phrase to describe your feeling of anxiety. Don’t try to force it to be something, just take whatever comes into your head. Even if that is a colour, sound or shape go with it. If nothing comes just use the word anxious and “Tap” on that.
It’s important that you acknowledge how you are feeling. Too often we try to get rid of the anxiety and move on from it before we acknowledge it. EFT gives you the chance to absolutely acknowledge how you are feeling by tapping on it. And by doing that it gives you the control to begin to change it.
3. Recognising changes
After the first round or two of tapping you will start to notice changes in how you feel. These changes are important because as you tap, your body will be releasing the blockages of energy to enable you to release the anxiety. When you notice a change in how you feel, write it down and tap on that word, sentence or phrase. The process works in keeping the conscious mind busy with the tapping while the unconscious mind works at releasing the anxiety.
4. Quick, Easy, Discreet
EFT tapping can work quickly. Often after a couple of rounds the effects of anxiety are greatly reduced.
The actual tapping is easy! It doesn’t matter if you get mixed up or miss a point. You can’t do any harm.
It can be discreet. Although tapping on all the points is pretty obvious, it is possible to pick a point, your favourite one or one that you feel a stronger connection to and just tap on that. This is great if you are somewhere public. This is really effective and is used commonly before driving tests, exams, dental treatment or in public places when anxiety arises.
5. Can be used with a therapist or alone
A big advantage of EFT is that once you know how to do the process you can use it alone if you wish. Enabling you to begin to control your anxiety yourself.
Equally it can be used with a practitioner leading the session. The practitioner will be able to notice changes, ask questions and identify links and patterns around your anxiety. With a good, trusted practitioner you can begin to unravel negative emotions attached to your anxiety and then reduce or get rid of it completely.
Take a look at my YouTube video “Tapping with Tighe” to show the basics of this useful technique and have a go yourself!