This article was first published on EFTUniverse.com in February of 2013.
Five Steps to Accelerated EFT
The ability to help someone with fast and effective EFT usually takes both practice and a certain amount of trial and error. Unfortunately, I learned this the hard way when I first started seeing clients in 2008. For instance, one time, a man I will call Charles showed up for his first appointment hoping that we could address weight loss, bitterness toward his ex-wife and an overwhelming amount of stress all in one session. Somehow, in our first phone conversation, I hadn’t realized that he was expecting “one-minute miracles” for three complicated areas of his life in our first session together!
If I had known then what I know now, I would have avoided missteps like this early in my career. However, in addition to being more proactive in finding out what my clients’ expectations are, I have also learned that sometimes an enormous amount of healing can happen in one EFT session.
In the years since I began working as an EFT practitioner, I have identified five elements that have been present in every session I have done which contained a “one-minute wonder” or an issue that resolved itself in one session. When these elements are present, I find that my client and I are poised to work quickly toward the successful resolution of an issue.
Here are the five elements:
1. The session focuses on one issue at a time but it is thorough and uncovers each aspect of that one issue. An experienced practitioner will be able to differentiate between an issue that contains several different aspects, and a session that has lost its focus and started to wander. For instance, I recently worked with a client named Marcy who came to me in complete frustration as a result of recent experiences with accountants. Accountants made her feel “nitpicked and disregarded.” We explored several aspects of her aversion to accountants, and at one point, she was reminded of an incident from her childhood that involved her dad, who had been slapped with a large penalty by the IRS when she was about 10 years old. She still vividly remembered his upset.
After mentioning that sudden memory, she returned to the disturbing events in her business that were causing her distress. However, when I suggested that we return to her dad’s story, sure enough, we found that it contained the seed that had grown into her discomfort with accountants. Several rounds of EFT later on that story and her childhood impressions of it, and Marcy’s hostility toward accountants had melted away. By the end of the session, she felt completely at ease when she imagined preparing for her next accounting meeting, and she emailed me two weeks later to let me know that the meeting had gone well, and that for the first time ever when meeting with an accountant, she had felt like a grown woman instead of a child. Her accountant’s requests for more detailed information seemed neutral this time instead of loaded with recriminations, which was how she had always perceived these requests in the past.
Marcy’s memory of her dad’s story could have been mistaken for an interesting tangent, but because she was willing to explore it, we were able to be thorough and take care of the aspect of her problem that was embedded in that particular memory. Now she is free of her aversion to accountants forever.
2. The problem stands between my client and something that he or she really wants. I rarely see rapid change in clients who are not highly motivated by either pain or pleasure. In Jill’s case, her motivation was paralyzing pain. Jill, who was 32 years old, had lost her mother to cancer a little over a year ago, and Jill was still completely lost in her grief. Being stuck in such deep sadness was painful for her, but her real motivation for coming to see me was that she was no longer the involved, hands-on mother to her three young children that she had been before her own mother had passed on. Jill’s passion for her children gave her the courage to confront her grief directly.
In our session together, Jill discovered that she was working off of a belief that said, “If I am not paralyzed with grief it will mean that I didn’t really love my mother.” For most people, beliefs like this one lose their power as soon as they come to conscious awareness, and Jill was no exception. She saw quite clearly that that belief was not true at all, and it dissolved easily in one session. I do not believe that Jill could have worked through her grief so quickly if she hadn’t been so highly motivated by her love and her strong desire to see her children flourish again.
3. The client wants to heal the problem more than he or she wants to be right. My client, Julia, booked a session with me because she had had a painful fight with her grown daughter, and three months later, her daughter still was not speaking to her. Julia had apologized several times to her daughter to no avail. By the time she came to see me, Julia felt that her daughter was wrong for refusing to accept her apologies, but nonetheless, she was willing to do anything in her power to make things right again.
Her honesty and openness allowed me to take her through the story with a more detached perspective. She realized that her extreme guilt had caused her to miss something important about this situation: The argument had touched a nerve with her daughter related to sibling rivalry, and the resentment coming from her daughter had more to do with her daughter’s acrimonious relationship with her brother, Julia’s son, than it had to do with Julia.
Armed with this new understanding, after our session Julia sent her daughter a short note letting her know that she knew she, Julia, understood that her comments must have been especially painful in light of her daughter’s difficult relationship with her brother, and that she was willing to give her daughter as much time as she needed to start talking to her again. To Julia’s great joy, her daughter contacted her within the week and they began to repair their relationship. It was as if, once Julia’s understanding mirrored the truth of the situation with her daughter, her daughter was able to respond from that place of truth as well. If Julia had not had the humility to continue to explore healing this relationship, even in the face of her daughter’s apparent stubbornness, she would not have reached the deeper understanding that allowed healing to take place.
4. There is an effective balance on the part of the client between self-direction and faith in the EFT Practitioner. It isn’t easy to trust someone you have just met with painful, frightening parts of your life; however, quick resolutions often require a certain amount of trust between people who have just met. Jenn’s story illustrates this beautifully.
Jenn, a sophomore in high school, came to see me at her mother’s insistence. Jenn had broken her ankle, and several weeks later, her pain was still so severe that her doctor had prescribed narcotics to suppress it. Jenn’s doctor was mystified by her pain and could find no medical reason to explain it.
When I told Jenn how EFT tapping works and showed her on myself how I wanted her to rub the sore spot below her collarbone, she gave me a withering look of disbelief that almost made me laugh out loud. I asked her to just try one round to see what happened. Luckily, Jenn’s pain quickly dropped from a 9 (on a scale of 1 to 10) to a 6; that bit of relief was just enough to pique her curiosity and keep her going with the EFT.
During the course of the session, it came out that Jenn, who was an honors student with several extracurricular activities, was expected by her school to make up all of the homework she had missed due to her injury in one week, even though she would also have new homework starting the day she returned. This requirement, in turn, had caused Jenn to become angry with herself for being so clumsy as to have fallen in the first place.
Once all that was on the table and was addressed with EFT, we were able to get the pain down to a 3 after several more rounds of EFT. Three days after her appointment, the pain was down to a 1.5, which her doctor felt was commensurate with the level of injury Jenn had sustained. In our time together, Jenn never completely let go of her own good judgment, but she was willing to at least give EFT a try, which allowed her to find relief from her chronic pain quickly.
5. The client shares what is going through his/her mind, even when it seems irrelevant or random. The mind is a funny thing – one of its functions seems to be to just secrete thoughts – sensible thoughts, strange thoughts, and thoughts that, at first glance, seem irrelevant to whatever we are doing at any given moment. The connections between our thoughts are not always immediately apparent, and, even more confusingly, sometimes they truly are random. However, from the point of view of an EFT Practitioner, the thought that seems the strangest to our client may be the very thought that leads the way out of an issue. When clients are willing to let their Practitioner in on the thoughts running through their minds without giving in to the temptation to prejudge them, the Practitioner has a rich field of possibilities to work with.
Candace was a life coach who came to see me because she had an important message that she wanted to share with the world in the form of a book. She had lost all desire to work on her book and she didn’t know why. We started out by tapping on the predictable things that might hold someone back on a book project, such as “What if nobody wants to read my book?” “What if I do all this work and I can’t find a publisher?” and, “What if my message isn’t as important to people as I think it should be?” Forty-five minutes into the session, Candace was as blocked as ever; she still couldn’t even imagine sitting down to work on her book.
At that point, I asked her to close her eyes, take a deep breath, and just share with me whatever thoughts were going through her mind. Candace blurted out, “This book will bring me more clients, and I won’t be able to keep up with the extra work.” I asked, “What would be the worst thing about not being able to keep up with the extra work?” and Candace replied, “I’m afraid I would lose control of everything, and not do a good job for anyone.”
Once we tapped on Candace’s fears of becoming overwhelmed and unable to keep up with the additional clients that a successful book would likely bring her, her resistance against moving forward vanished. When we ended the session, Candace felt ready to start work on the book again. Several months later, I was happy to receive an email inviting me to Candace’s book release party. The exposure from her book did, indeed, fill up her coaching practice, and she has handled the extra work with aplomb.
Candace’s willingness to share a thought with me that did not reflect her own version of herself allowed us to delve into a hidden fear that was holding her back, and to ultimately release that fear.
I have been blessed to work with willing and open clients such as Candace, Jenn, Julia, Jill and Marcy. They have allowed me to open my own mind to the immense power of EFT and its ability to provide gentle yet fast healing. While it is important for EFT Practitioners to not make promises that we can’t deliver on, I have learned over time that much more can be accomplished in a session than I had previously thought possible. Over the years, Charles in particular has become my inspiration. I love the fact that he believed so much was possible in such a short time. Perhaps he was the one who had it right simply because he was not focused on limitations. As Gary Craig has said so often, we are on the ground floor of a healing high rise. These five steps to faster EFT are just one of many inroads that are being discovered every day.