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Pat Gurnick is my hero

Important Note: This article was written prior to 2010 and is now outdated. Please use my newest advancement, Optimal EFT. It is more efficient, more powerful and clearly explained in my free e-book, The Unseen Therapist™.  Best wishes, Gary

Hi Everyone,

This is a special which has taken me several days to write. It is about Pat Gurnick (age 43), one of my heroes, and its content is both useful and inspirational for almost everyone on this list.

Even though there are some highly sensitive and very personal aspects to Pat's progress with EFT, she has graciously allowed me to give you her name. We disguise only the identity of "a relative."

This way, others who have walked even part way down Pat's abusive path can communicate with someone who has "been there." This can be a confidence gainer....a source of hope....for those who are wondering if EFT can help them with their seemingly "impossible problems." Professionals might also want to contact Pat for more details and clinical insights.

Here is the story...

I first had contact with Pat (via telephone) a few weeks prior to a workshop I gave in the Los Angeles area about 2 years ago. She was beset with a long list of physical problems and an even longer list of emotional abuses. She agreed to work with me in front of the audience and, for preparation, she sent me a letter which contained the following....

[One of my relatives] was verbally and physically abusive. If I wanted to express myself he would scream in my face, "You have nothing important to say, shut up, be quiet, don't move." If I ran he would find me and hit me over and over until I broke--I tried not to cry. Or, I would get away and jump out the window and hide in the bushes for hours peeing on myself, shaking and terrified.....he drilled into me time and time again that I was stupid, a shmuck [more on the shmuck issue later] etc. He had my mind so spun out that I didn't even know what I was thinking or feeling by the time he was done with me. I was huddled in a corner, fetal position, crying. I wanted to die. At age 7 I wanted to die.

This is only 10% of the letter. It goes on endlessly with her daily abuses and their effects on her life. Her older sister was also verbally and physically abusive to her. She was mentally ill (borderline personality with psychotic features), and contributed to her daily terror. Pat exclaimed that her sister tried to kill her often. Among other things, she forced Pat to walk on glass, shoved her into a hot oven and onto the hot burners, as well as forcing her into scalding showers.

Pat's experience is particularly important for EFT'ers because it does not fall into the "one minute wonder" category that we see so often. Rather, it represents the type of challenge that moves the dedicated EFT'er toward mastery.

This is not a single traumatic event such as an accident, rape or the death of a loved one. Rather, it is several thousand days worth of abusive conditioning....physical beatings....emotional jack-hammers....self-image insults. Pat was a little child...defenseless...didn't have a chance. Trying to "tap this away" with a few rounds of EFT is like trying to knock down 100 acres of diseased trees with one swing of the axe.

With the help of EFT and Dr. Marilynn Snow Jones (a first class EFT'er), Pat has made great progress. However, her improvement was only accomplished by breaking the problem down into SPECIFIC EVENTS and applying EFT to each event. Piece by piece Pat's anger/hatred for her "relative" and sister have changed to genuine compassion.

Here is how Pat tells it about her relative in a recent letter to me.....

Since my work with EFT, my relationship with my abusive relative has totally changed. It is loving, considerate, and respectful. I never expected this could turn around and be a positive, healing experience for me. But it has. My attitude and behavior has softened due to the clearing of 'trees' related to my relative. As they were chopped down through the EFT sessions with Dr. Marilynn Snow Jones, DC, my inner turmoil eased up, and my response changed. I do not have that disgusted yet hypervigilent reaction being in his presence.

I now can say "I love you", send "thinking of you" cards, and give him a warm hug! Just today he left a message on my phone stating,"Pat, just calling to find out how you are, and I do want to hear from you at least once a week. So, just remember now, let me know at least once a week how you are doing and whats happening to you, because I do love you. Talk to you later, Bye."

God, was that healing for me. I burst out crying with joy, rather than grief. What a wonderful moment that was for me. Instead of fear, I felt love. Love filled my heart and put a smile on my face. Never in a million years would I associate him with these sweet emotions. Terror can be replaced with feelings of joy, and I never had that experience before. I never knew that was possible. EFT had given me a chance to heal my old wounds, and develop a new relationship filled with love and hope.

Pat Gurnick

I am pleased to report that I had a minor part in Pat's improvement. At the aforementioned Los Angeles workshop, Pat agreed to work with me on an issue in front of the whole group. After spending a few minutes looking for a SPECIFIC EVENT, we settled on one of the times her relative called her a shmuck. This may seem like a minor event to you but, to Pat, it was one of those events that turned her thoughts to thunder.

In the context of her family, shmuck was a very derogatory slang word for penis. In Pat's words, it was the equivalent of calling a woman "a cunt." So this word, for Pat, was heavily loaded. It carried with it a burdensome meaning...a personal label that was cemented into her psyche.

Sooooo, we began. My approach was to reframe the term "shmuck" into something humorous. That way future uses of that term would result in "tee-hee's" instead of trauma. As seasoned EFT'ers know, reframes land much more easily during tapping because resistant beliefs fall by the wayside. Here, to the best of my memory, is the essence of our session. [Note: While this may seem off color to some, it was right on the mark for Pat--I'm a firm believer in fluidity and creativity and thinking outside the box.]

Gary: So how often would your relative call you a shmuck?

Pat: Frequently

Gary: And it's an ugly word?

Pat: Very

Gary: Well, imagine for the moment that I am your relative and also imagine that my nose is a shmuck and it hangs down over my lips and swings about as I talk.

Pat: [with a curious smile] OK.

Gary: Now, imagine that as I belittle and berate you I repeatedly call you a shmuck and every time I do that my nose-shmuck becomes erect and crashes into my forehead. [To illustrate this I smash my forehead with my hand as I say shmuck].

Pat: [Still smiling] OK

Gary: Now tap with me.... Even though I am supposedly a shmuck [I smash my forehead], I didn't know I was so funny.

Pat: [Laughs and repeats after me as we tap the EFT shortcut points during the narration]

Gary: Look at all the things a shmuck [I smash my forehead] can do...

Pat: [Laughs, taps and repeats].

Gary: A shmuck [I smash my forehead] can lie idle and look silly....

Pat: [Laughs, taps and repeats]

Gary: Or it can punish another shmuck [smash] by smashing its forehead....

Pat: [Laughs, taps and repeats]

Gary: Maybe shmucks [smash] deserve each other...

And so it went as we tapped for several minutes toward this humorous portrayal of a shmuck. At the end, Pat couldn't think of the term without giggling and to this day (about two years later) it is still a humorous word. No charge on it whatsoever. This is only one piece of this large puzzle, however, and Pat still has much to do to unravel all that has been wound up within her.

As I said before, Pat is one of my heroes and so are all the other Pat Gurnick's of the world. My heroes used to be athletes, actors and singers but that's not true any more. Pat Gurnick has lived in emotional slavery during her formative years and has endured through it all and become one of the sweetest, most caring people I know. There is a gentleness about her that is rare in human beings. She is your friend, a shining example that brings a little light wherever she goes. She is soft spoken but says a lot when she speaks.

There are many rewards for sitting in this EFT chair of mine. But by far the biggest reward is the privilege I am given to meet the true heroes of this world. I speak here not only of Pat Gurnick but to all the others who have endured her experiences. I speak here of our war veterans and our rape victims and all those that have endured horrendous abuses in their lifetimes. I speak also of the dedicated therapists and healers that give of their time and resources (sometimes without pay) to assist those in need. Heroes indeed!

You are my heroes.

Love, Gary


Explore our newest advancement, Optimal EFT™, by reading my free e-book, The Unseen Therapist™. More efficient. More powerful.