I love EFT, but find it hard to remember to use it. Do you have any suggestions to help me remember to use EFT regularly?
I find it very funny. When friends, family and clients are sharing with me something that has happened in the past week, when I ask, “Did you tap on it?,” inevitably they respond, “I always forget.”
Initially, in my practice, I found that very few clients were doing the homework we had agreed upon. As I started to investigate this, generally the response was as simple as, “I forgot.” In response to this, I started to give homework AND assign the time they should be doing the homework (e.g., sitting in the car before walking in to work, right before bed, while taking a morning walk).
Basically, without saying this, we were creating an Emotional Freedom Techniques (EFT) routine. Here is an example of a routine for one of my clients, “Jane”.
Jane works for an agency that places and supports children in the foster care system, an emotionally trying job. It is stressful too because they are trying to do so much with limited resources. Jane was taking quite a bit of anxiety home from work.
The routine we created was very simple. Each day before she left work she would stop in the restroom, go into one of the stalls, and do EFT for five to ten minutes. She would address any emotions she had at that moment, as well as take a quick review of the day to see if there was anything she needed to clean up. Then, symbolically, she would flush the toilet to show her self that she had gotten rid of all the stress she was carrying around.
We very intentionally chose her workplace as the place she was going to do the work. Her concern was that she was bringing the emotion from work home with her. We very easily could have had her wait until she got home before she did EFT.
There are two problems with this. First, by waiting until she got home she was still bringing the emotion home (which is what we were trying to fix). Second, it was very easy to get distracted when she got home. There was the dog to take care of, her husband to greet and spend time with, and dinner to fix. It would be very easy to get distracted with all that was happening at home and not get to the EFT work she needed to do.
By having her do the EFT at her workplace both of these problems were resolved. First, doing the EFT at work, all of the emotion associated with the job was staying at work. Second, by making it part of her exit routine from the office there was no way she was going to get distracted from doing EFT. It simply became one more step to getting out the door, like turning off her computer, packing her bag, and turning the voice mail on.
4 Steps to Tapping and Doing EFT Everyday
1) Do it at the same time everyday.
There will be occasions when we need to do EFT right away, but most things can be dealt with at a designated time. Look at how well we brush our teeth. Every night before we go to bed, the last thing we all do is brush our teeth. I know I don’t think why I’m brushing, it’s just part of the routine. It’s much easier to do any sort of maintenance for our health when it’s done at a regular time. This is true for brushing our teeth, going to the gym, or doing EFT.
2) Do it in the same place every time.
Now this might not be possible, but I have found it very helpful to have a consistent location. I do all of my prayer, meditation, and EFT in a special chair, which I use the chair only for these activities. The moment I start moving toward that chair, I immediately start to feel relaxed because my body, mind, and spirit know what’s coming.
You don’t have to have a special place where you only do EFT, but by having a consistent location (in bed, the kitchen table, the porch swing) you’re more likely to do it.
Also, it is important to pick a place where you won’t be distracted. In the living room while the kids are watching TV might not be the best choice.
3) Have a game plan when you sit down.
Mine looks something like this. First, I scan my body for any aches and pains and work on them first.
Second, I review my day to see what residual emotions are kicking around.
Third, I think about what’s happening tomorrow. I see if I’m worried about what is to come and then do one round of future tapping.
Fourth, I do work on whatever pressing issue there is in my life (e.g., a new job, relationship with someone). This is some area of my life that needs work, but isn’t going to happen in just one session.
Finally, I do a round of thanks-giving tapping.
This routine might be too involved for you, but having a game plan assures that you make good use of your time.
Also, this is not set in stone. If I find there is something else I need to do with my time, I can do it, but it’s a good starting point.
4) Don’t get too ambitious when creating a routine.
When you create your routine, start small. The quickest way to stop doing a routine is to simply avoid doing a routine that’s too complex. When you are first creating your routine, make it as simple as just working on your aches and pains, in bed, right before you fall asleep. After you’ve done this for a week or two, add another component to your routine.