For the past 6 months I have been seeing a therapist who specialises in Emotional Freedom Technique (EFT). EFT is known as a method of Energy Psychology which means it is basically a talking therapy combined with energy work. It involves using the meridian points used in acupuncture but instead of inserting needles into the points, you tap on them with your fingertips. The system of EFT used by therapists is based on the system developed by Gary Craig in the 1990s. It is based on the assumption the we each have an energy system which stores information such as learned ideas, emotions, habits, etc. By tapping on the points as we talk about an issue, the idea is that we can ‘dislodge’ stored up unhelpful beliefs, emotions, or patterns of behaviour, and make room for learning new, more helpful ones. The idea that emotional imbalances are often key factors in the development of physical illness is becoming more widely accepted, and therefore EFT is used to treat physical conditions as well as psychological ones. It is possible to either address the physical issue directly, or address emotional issues which in the process would also lead to improvement in physical symptoms.
The diagram shows the points commonly used in EFT. What normally happens in a therapy session is that the client and therapist both tap on each of the points (on themselves) in turn while saying a statement relating to the issue. The therapist will say the statement and the client repeats it.
The order of points in a tapping ’round’ is as follows:
2. Side of eye
3. Under eye
4. Under nose
6. Collar bone
7. Under arm
8. Top of head
(The points and the order they are used can vary slightly between practitioners. For example some start with the top of the head and work around the points from there. Some also include other points not listed here.)
The other point most commonly used which is not listed here is the karate chop point at the side of the hand (just where it has an indent). In the sessions I have with my therapist this is the point that we tap on while I’m talking about my issues before we start a tapping round. While I talk about what I am feeling and what I want to work on in the session we tap on that point. We then start a round of tapping and my therapist will say statements relating to what I have told her which I then repeat as we tap through the points.
My therapist is called Jenny Luscombe and she is based in Liverpool. I originally had a Skype session with her and decided that it was so good that I needed to see her in person to get the full benefit! I go once a fortnight and she charges £40 per session (one hour). I found her on the website therapy-directory.org.uk and was really impressed with her passion for EFT as a life-changing tool that really works. I’ve put links to her profile and to her website here:
She can probably explain better than me the real ‘magic’ of EFT. If you are new to the whole thing it can sound like it is too good to be true. I was quite sceptical when I was first introduced to EFT by a different therapist a few years ago. I thought, How on earth can tapping on yourself do anything?! But since I’ve been working with Jenny the changes I am feeling are profound. I have a lot more energy and stamina, and I haven’t had a ‘crash’ since starting therapy. I would say that I am more ‘in my body’ if that makes sense. I feel that I am more physically here, and that there is more ‘room’ in my body for my energy to circulate. I am also feeling a lot more emotionally strong and I would say becoming more at peace with myself and my life.
During the session the effect can be quite hypnotic. It allows you to use your own intuition as to what issues there are that are creating blockages and causing problems. It is very gentle and things just unfold naturally at the pace that you are ready for. It allows you to make connections between events, emotions and patterns that you might not have realised before. You can explore traumatic events without having to relive them. It feels very safe and you only ever move at a pace that your own subconscious will allow, which is always trying to keep you safe. So it allows you to open up and explore in a safe and gentle way, where you can just be curious.
My theory is that emotional trauma has caused me to develop CFS/ME and then having this condition has been the cause of even more emotional trauma. Therefore something needs to jolt the system to start things working properly again. It seems like EFT is doing this. I can’t say that I’m 100% cured yet, but it does feel like I am getting there!