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What the Heck is EFT?

A few weeks ago, I encouraged you to take the time to explore new ideas, establish different habits, and look at the world around us with more attention and delight. What did you delve into? I would love to know.

And last week I shared with you how to make your own skincare products with household food items you probably have on hand. Did any of you catch my tutorial on the avocado-honey mask? It works. My skin felt great the next morning, I swear.

This week I thought I would share something else that works. And I encourage you to give it a try, particularly if you are feeling stress, either at home or at work. We don’t need elevated cortisol, especially in midlife, because there is a direct relationship between high cortisol and weight gain.

It is Emotional Freedom Technique (EFT) or tapping and is purported to help relieve stress and anxiety quickly and simply. There are many practitioners out there, most notably Nick Ortner, creator of The Tapping Solution documentary and the motivational speaker, Gabrielle Bernstein, author of The Universe Has Your Back. They are among many people who are convinced that tapping reduces anxiety, and helps alleviate post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD).

But what exactly is EFT?

To give you a little background, this technique was developed in the 1990’s by Gary Craig as an alternative psychology therapy, applying a combination of acupressure and affirmations to negative emotions to provide both psychological and physical relief. It is part of a larger concept known as Thought Field Therapy which psychologist Roger Callahan used in his therapeutic practice to treat phobia, anxiety, and depression.

Is it easy to do?

It is a remarkably simple technique of applying pressure through tapping on various meridian points of the body while repeating a statement out loud about the problem at hand and how that makes the individual feel. It is done several times and includes positive affirmations as you move through it. At the end of the series, you should feel noticeable calmer, less anxious and pain-free. The more you do, the better you feel. Easy-peasy.

But does it work?

I thought I would give it a try and, yes, I did feel more relaxed and positive afterwards.

But, exactly how did this work?

I am not sure, but I think it has something to do with distraction and breathing more fully. I have found that when I am anxious, I hold my breath. Taking a few full, deep breaths brings me back to a more relaxed state.

And the practice may also rely on naming the problem, disassociating it from you (i.e. you are not the problem), and providing yourself with some validation through affirmation. It just feels good to do this, doesn’t it?

The technique is pretty straightforward and ostensibly helps with:
  • Stress

  • Sleep disorders

  • Fatigue

  • Tension headaches

  • Muscle tension

  • Joint pain

  • Depression

I was familiar with the concepts of meridians, chi, acupressure and energy flow, from my training in therapeutic massage, which touched on traditional Chinese medicine (TCM). These were explored as a part of a larger context of complementary and alternative medicine (CAM), which purports to treat the person more holistically, including supporting the nutritional, emotional and social aspects of the individual.

Since it has gained in popularity in the last few years, as a technique that can help with physical and psychological disorders, it is routinely scrutinized and found wanting. There are several reports out there that disclaim the technique and find no scientific evidence to back it up.

That being said, on closer examination, many mind-body healing techniques are similarly dismissed yet many people derive benefit from them. Complementary alternative healing (CAM) includes Reiki, acupressure, Tai chi, yoga, nutritional therapies, Native Alaska and American Indian practices, and the use of herbal remedies, among other techniques.

And research into CAM grows along with an integration into the standard Western medical practice, to support the individual on many levels. There just isn’t enough body of evidence to support many of these claims right now. It doesn’t mean that won’t change.

Look at what has happened in the field of nutrition and wellness. Many of the practices we readily accept today as fact were ridiculed or misunderstood early on.
Are you ready to give it a try? Look for my video this week on how to do EFT on yourself. It will be up on Facebook Wednesday, 8/16/22.
And don’t forget to get on the waitlist for the next Mindful Cleanse, will start right after Labor Day. If you find yourself feeling sluggish after a holiday weekend, this whole food cleanse will be just the thing to get you feeling your energetic self again in a few days. Promise!

If you like this blog, please feel free to share it with your friends or on social. I appreciate it.

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