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Other Physical Issues

Digestive System

Irritable Bowel Syndrome fades in 4 brief EFT sessions

Important Note: This article was written prior to 2010 and is now outdated.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 case by David Hignett of the UK displays a very clear link between IBS and unresolved emotional issues. You might wish to bring this article to your doctor's attention. Please consult physicians on all medical issues.

Hugs, Gary

By David Hignett

Hi Gary,

This was for me a very exciting exploration and resolution of issues buried within a case of Irritable Bowel Syndrome, or IBS, with emotional freedom gained on a number of aspects of lifetime duration. It was also a valuable learning experience. The main points it highlighted to me were use of language, emotional emphasis, immediate physical relief without having to establish the underlying cause before beginning, and the (very gentle) "I wonder........." As a Social Worker in the UK for many years I have used the latter extensively in talking therapy as an invitation to explore; and it seems to transfer nicely to EFT setup statements.

I was recently at an all-day meeting for a quite other purpose, although I had managed to mention EFT (as I have tended to do frequently since it came to me last Autumn!). I am deeply grateful to Gwyneth Moss, EFT Master, for having initiated me into this Gift, and supported and guided me in developing it.

During the lunch hour Lorraine, a member of the group, approached me and asked if I thought the tapping might be effective with IBS: she had been quite unwell the previous week at work with bowel blockages; and she was at best struggling to manage the day. She had suffered from IBS for three years, having overcome bulimia of twenty-three years' duration. She is thirty-seven, divorced, no Children, and with a taxing job.

There were a total of four sessions at approximately fortnightly intervals, all but the first being by telephone. I believe none of them was longer individually than twenty minutes. During the first one I began - with her permission - by tapping on her: it felt that she was frightened and needed the contact. We concentrated on the physical sensations as she described them (eg - "bunged up"). Then she tapped herself continuously, me tapping with her, things surfacing like "I have to hold it in" and "it's scarey to let it go". We then set up "And I wonder if it's scarey to hold it in too, and I wonder if it might be safe to let it go". After two rounds Lorraine's face looked less pinched, her shoulders relaxed; and she said she needed to go to the toilet.

Two weeks later I responded to a text message left while my phone was switched off: Lorraine had been sent (escorted) home from work with bad stomach cramps. She said her tummy hurt and she was doubled up; she felt weak on her left side; her eyes hurt; and she was scared of what might happen since it was building up. So we did "Even though (the symptoms and the fear) and I don't know what they're about, I wonder if it might be safe to know and to let them go." Again we tapped continuously; and we set it up again as aspects surfaced: "it feels like I've been stabbed in the heart and the dagger pulled down"; "Mum was too busy eating her ice cream to talk when I phoned"; "I've always been second best and had to keep it all in".

Then a major Family issue surfaced which I have agreed not to disclose, but whose several aspects explained Lorraine's feelings of being second best; and we wondered if it was now OK to let this go and let in the Light - since neither she nor her Mother could have affected the situation. We concluded with Lorraine saying joyously while tapping, "I feel OK to let it go: it's done with now". She said she felt relaxed with no pain.

Again a phonecall with Lorraine sent home from work, saying she felt really bad and was just writhing about on the bed with stomach cramps and a feeling of pins and needles. Whilst tapping on symptoms the pain itself came down to a certain extent but the distress less so; and she kept crying about being "so scared of eating" and being "not guilty". Tapping on those made limited headway (I think they were too vague). Then it occurred to me (belatedly!) she often said "I don't give a shit"; so we did "Even though I don't give a shit, I wonder if I can love and accept and forgive myself and the others". We kept tapping with Lorraine yelling, "I really really don't give a (several varieties of!) shit" - until she began giggling. Then I suggested, "I wonder if really I do give a shit - and can let myself give a shit?" - so we tapped round on that, Lorraine coming to say, "Yes I do - and I can - and I choose to!!!" (Thank you, Patricia Carrington, for Choices.)

She quietened, and then said in a rather surprised tone she felt like cooking herself some dinner. A moment later she said - fairly casually - that she recalled her ex-Husband had phoned early that morning; and that felt to her to have been the cause of the problem. I asked if we needed to tap on that; and she said, no, there was no charge associated with it.

On the last session Lorraine phoned saying she was fearful it (bowel blockage) was building up again and she didn't know why, and her own tapping was not shedding any light. So we did, "I don't understand ............. - and I invite and embrace clarity of knowing on this". (Thank you, Carol Look, for this approach.) I can only say that Lorraine then picked it up and ran with it leaving me way behind - and it felt wonderful (!!!) As we tapped round a theme of being controlled emerged: money; freedom; Mother; two male "arrogant shits" showing no respect. Lorraine arrived at a perception that she had substituted firstly bulimia and then IBS for external controls of choices. We concluded with her saying, "It's not my fault; and I give it all back - and I forgive myself and them".

I understand that following using EFT she has a daily bowel movement without straining.  She no longer experiences the acute cramps, and has ceased to take the fibre drinks that her doctor originally recommended.  If she is hungry she eats what she chooses instead of fearing the consequences of adding to the content of her bowels.  My sense is that the biggest factor here is a substantial and stable reduction in her level of anxiety/intensity about potential constipation.  She feels confident she can manage the condition with EFT; and she is a happier person feeling that her life is not ruled by IBS.

The above would have taken ages (at least!) and a lot of agony on Lorraine's part to clear by just talking about it. Serious suicidal impulses have gone too. As a postscript, Lorraine more recently had a concern over a bloated feeling lest the IBS was returning: tapping enabled her to discover for herself the issue was purely hormonal and so transient. She will also shortly be training in EFT herself in order to help others.

Bright Blessings,

David Hignett



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