I recently had a chance to do EFT with someone who was having a really bad day. I didn’t have a lot of time to explain what we were doing and I didn’t know how to start. Because I wasn’t sure how to explain what we were going to do, I didn’t do anything. Do you have any suggestions on how to share EFT when you don’t have time to explain what you are doing?
photo by eyesplash Mikul
Here’s a story about using EFT when the person didn’t even know she was doing EFT.
I am part of a team which works in a school system to provide aid and support to faculties and staff in the first 72 hours of an emergency situation. We provide emotional support, debriefing opportunities, and response activities to help begin the healing process.
Recently we were called into a middle school on a Monday morning after one of the seventh grade teachers, “Jane”, had committed suicide over the weekend. By 11am much of our work was done. The students had had a chance to respond, we had identified the students and faculty who would need special attention, and the students were ready to get back to the school day.
Most of the team was debriefing in a hallway as we were waiting for one final class to finish. The vice-principal approached us to ask if one of us would be willing to talk with a second grade teacher who was having a particularly hard time.
I went downstairs to talk to the second grade teacher, “Sally”.
The teacher who had died had only been in the school a year and didn’t particularly get along with the rest of the staff. Sally had been one of Jane’s few confidants at the school. Sally was struggling with two issues.
First, she knew how hard Jane’s situation had been and was feeling guilty that she didn’t do more to help her. Second, she was mad because Jane had left behind a 13-year-old daughter.
I asked her if she wanted to try a relaxation technique that might help a little. I asked her to show me by holding her hands apart how big these emotions were. She held her hands about 2 feet apart.
So I said:
“Place both of your hands on your temples like this,” which I demonstrated by touching both of my temples with my fingertips, “take a few deep breaths and just listen to my voice”:
How could she have left her daughter like this…I should have done more…I knew it was coming and did nothing…her husband has to raise a child on his own.
“Now touch just below your nose like this,” as I demonstrated pressing above the upper lip, “take a few more deep breaths and just listen to my voice”:
Guilty I didn’t do more…mad she left them behind
I repeated this for the chin and collarbone points. I then checked in to see what was left, knowing we had made progress just by looking at her face. She showed her hands 4 inches apart, so we did one more round with just the four points.
I asked if she needed anything else.
She just wanted to give me a hug of thanks and headed back into her classroom.
There are a few things I learned or were reinforced from this experience:
- Not all the points are always necessary. We have seen this as the basic protocol has moved from 14 to 7 points. Sometimes we don’t need more than one point. Use what is useful.
- Client don’t have to say anything to tune into the issue. If the issue is intense enough they are fully tuned in and words are unnecessary. Also, the practitioner can provide the words of focus when the client can’t. In this case it was easiest for me to do it, since I didn’t have time to explain what we were doing.
- Sometimes it’s easiest just to do the work, rather than explain what you’re doing. I know in the past I have talked people out of EFT by trying to talk them into it. People don’t want EFT (or any other tool or protocol), they just want to feel better. By asking, “You want to try something that helps?” they say yes to meet a need. But if I were to say, “Do you want to try a meridian-based psychotherapy that works with the energy of the body to heal at the cellular level?”, I’d be likely to encounter some resistance because I then have to explain every part of the question I just asked.
- ALSO, because I didn’t feel that I had a lot of time to explain what we were doing, I had her use the touch and breathe method instead of tapping. I figured if I was going to have her tap it was a chance to place one more question in her mind. Keeping it as simple as possible removed all resistance to trying something new.
- It’s not the best option, but it is possible to work with two issues at once. I have seen in my own practice how dealing with one small piece at a time can resolve bigger things, often collapsing more than just the particular issue we are working on. In this case I didn’t have a lot of time. I had pulled a second grade teacher out of a full class. I took a chance on a super shortcut. I only used four points for two issues at once. It worked. If it hadn’t, I would have moved to more points and dealt with one issue at a time. Since the first round of tapping took less than 60 seconds it was a chance worth taking.
I would love to hear about your experiences of working with others at short notice, please add them to the comment box below.