Relationships

Using EFT to prepare for a difficult encounter

EFt Tapping Outdated ImageNote: This is one of 3,000 articles written prior to the updated Gold Standard (Official) EFT Tapping Tutorial™.  It provides practical uses for EFT Tapping and most EFT'ers should find it very helpful.  However, if your benefits are temporary or a more in-depth approach is needed, you are urged to (1) consult The Gold Standard EFT Tapping Tutorial, (2) Explore our newest advancement, Optimal EFT, by reading our free e-book, The Unseen Therapist, and/or (3) get help from a Certified EFT Practitioner.  

Hi Everyone,

Watch how Nancy Morris uses EFT to help her brother over a stressful situation. He needed to tell the lady he lives with that he is no longer happy with the situation and wants a change. Oh my! Can you feel the anxiety already? Many aspects come up, of course, all of which are appropriately handled by Nancy.

Hugs, Gary


By Nancy A. Morris, EFT-ADV

My only brother, Kevin, flew out to California to spend a week with me.  We are separated by 12 years in age and 3,000 miles but we are very caring and loving with each other.  As our week together progressed, he confided that he was no longer happy with his living situation at home and had been wanting to change it for five months but was afraid of the confrontation and resulting upset.  As in all live-in situations, especially with children (hers), finances, and pets involved, it was complex.

As our week together went on he shared more and more about what he was unhappy about and I asked probing questions to see if there was a possible resolution.  It seemed there was not.  Let me say that Kevin has never done a workshop, never read a self-help book, and never been to any kind of therapist or counselor.  I was hesitant to even tell him too much about EFT for fear of turning him off completely with this woo-woo stuff I'm so thrilled about.

However, as the week drew to a close, Kevin continued to ask me, his big sister for advice.  "When is the best time to talk to Mary?"  We explored the possibilities together, trying to find the right time to talk in private without kids around.  "What do I do when I get home?  How can I be truthful about what is going on without opening up the BIG conversation at an inappropriate time (again trying to protect Mary's children)? How can I talk to her?  What can I say to help her to understand?"  He wanted her to know the positive feelings he had for her and the kids, yet be clear about changing the living situation, and didn't know how to proceed.

These questions, and more like them, were clearly pressing on him as we had dinner together his last evening in California.  He would bring up his concerns whenever there was a lull in the conversation.  He was flying out early the next morning to return back East and still did not have his answers.

By the time we got home and ready for bed, it was late and he was still looking for answers.  So I finally said, "Kevin, come in here and we'll do just 15 minutes of EFT.  I promise it will help."  I thought he'd resist, but he just grabbed a chair and sat across from me.  I told him very briefly that this would help remove his fear of this confrontation thereby helping him to stay present to himself and therefore remain kind and thoughtful during their discussion.  He accepted this.

We each began by tapping the karate chop points on the sides of our hands against each other, we addressed any general psychological reversal present (for both he and I, we both did this on ourselves).

Even though this is such a weird thing to be doing…

Even though my sister Nancy has this really strange technique that might help, I'm not sure, but I deeply and completely accept myself and her anyway.

Even though all my friends would laugh at me if they could see me doing this voodoo, I deeply and completely accept myself and my sister as we are.

We were smiling as we got into the truth of all this.  I thought we might as well get the elephant in the room right out in the open before we began.

I told him there would be tapping gently on his face and torso and he could do it, or I could do it for him.  He preferred that I do it which also felt right to me; he could concentrate on the issues and not worry about where and how to tap.  We started right into it.

His level of intensity regarding the upcoming conversation was an 8 on a scale of 0 to 10 at this point.  Then we did the setup for his difficult situation and how to handle it while he rubbed the sore spot on his chest:

Even though I'm afraid to talk to Mary about my needs…

Even though I'm really scared to talk to Mary when I get home…

Even though I'm really dreading talking to Mary about this…

We tapped through two full rounds with reminder phrases such as, My fear … my dread … my fear of talking to Mary.  After this, his level of intensity went down to 3 out of 10 so the edge was off the general incident.

Because I already knew a lot about his situation and it was late, I wanted him to get very specific about what exactly he was afraid would happen.  I asked Kevin to close his eyes and picture himself telling Mary how he felt.  I asked him what was his worst fear about this?  What could she do or say that would be terrible? 

His answer was that she could "flip out, throw things, swear and yell at him.”  Had she ever behaved this way before?  No, but he was still afraid of it.  His level of intensity on these specific fears was a 9 out of 10.  Another setup,

Even though I'm afraid Mary will yell and scream…

Even though I'm afraid Mary may throw things…

Even though I'm afraid Mary may flip out…

After two rounds his level of intensity was down to a 3 out of 10.  For the next round I included some more acceptance of Mary and her difficult situation as well as trusting himself.

Even though I'm afraid Mary will flip out, I deeply and completely accept myself and trust that I will stay calm.

Even though I'm afraid Mary will flip out, I deeply and completely accept myself and Mary, I know she's doing the best she can.

Even though I'm afraid Mary will flip out, I deeply and completely accept myself and I know if I stay calm and present, it will help her to remain calm.

I tapped on Kevin for one round including, just on instinct, his throat down through his heart chakra and his solar plexus.  This seemed to relax him and calm him.  After this round when I asked him to imagine the worst possible reaction from Mary, he said he was unable to really feel it; it just "seemed too far away".  His level of intensity was 0 out of 10.

It still felt to me like there was more there because he asked again about how he would know when to talk to her.  I pursued this asking why this was important.  He wanted to be sure the kids were not around; he was afraid Mary would run into the children's room and tell them it was "all their fault".  Ah, a new aspect had shown up.  His level of intensity on this was 10 out of 10.

Since there was no way to predict exactly what situation he would be in when he got home, I thought it best to focus on his strength in a difficult situation and his ability to remain calm and thus help Mary to remain calm, and his wisdom to know what to do regardless of the situation that developed.

Even though I'm nervous about this conversation, I love and accept myself and I know I can remain calm.

Even though I'm really nervous about this conversation, I love and accept myself and want to believe I have the wisdom to handle it well.

Even though I'm nervous about this conversation, I know I am a loving man and I can remain loving and calm and those around me will feel this coming from me.

For this round I asked Kevin to tap on himself so he would feel empowered and so that he would be more likely to remember the tapping points and rhythm when he was at home.  I used the reminder phrases, I am a loving man … I can remain calm in a tough situation … I am a kind man … I have the wisdom to know when it is right to have the conversation … I have the wisdom to know how to handle whatever comes up.  His level of intensity went down to 0 out of 10 after three rounds of tapping.

Kevin looked and felt like a changed man after this short session.  You can imagine how wonderfully satisfying it was for me to be able to help him this way; he had been so distressed.  I had recently read something on emofree.com (can't remember by whom) that suggested that there is a way to hold the gamut point and the karate chop point on one hand with the other hand in order to calm yourself when you don't want others to know you are doing EFT. 

I showed Kevin how to do this (thumb on the gamut and index finger on the karate chop point just an inch below the baby finger).  I suggested he could just hold his hands this way during any difficult situation or discussion at work or at home and no one would know.  He liked this idea and took it seriously to learn what spots to hold; this felt so good to have a give-away to send him home with as a calming reminder.  Thank you to whoever came up with that!

As a long-time counselor but fairly new EFT practitioner these are the lessons I learned:

1.  Even though someone has never done anything remotely close to therapy or personal development, they may be very open and accepting of EFT.  Kevin was immediately able to identify his special tapping "spot" (without my asking) and volunteered that he could feel his emotion draining away as soon as he got to the under-the-eye tapping point.

2.  Knowing someone very well or being related to them would be a definite no-no to working with them in a formal therapy situation.  With EFT, knowing someone's history and having love and trust in place can actually assist movement.  This will only be true if the practitioner can truly follow the client and let themselves be led, not try to lead the session.  EFT through us, not by us!  Best advice ever.

I asked Kevin to imagine the upcoming conversation he wanted to have with Mary in detail.  He closed his eyes and reviewed for a minute or two and then declared that he wasn't worried at all.  He felt confident that he could handle it with kindness while making sure he was heard.  His level of intensity was zero.  We'd spent no more than 15 or 20 minutes and both went to bed feeling relaxed and calm.

I followed up with Kevin a week later.  He said that they had hired a babysitter for the kids so that they could be alone to talk.  The babysitter canceled at the last minute.  They were able to put the kids to bed early and talk quietly and rationally for a few hours and arrive at a plan for the future that feels good to both of them.  Kevin said he had done EFT on himself once before the conversation and had used the "holding point" on his hands a few times.  He felt that all of this was a big help to having "the difficult conversation" go very well and he and Mary (who is a wonderful woman) were working to help each other get what they want.

Nancy Morris

 

 

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