Tapping, otherwise known as Emotional Freedom Techniques (EFT) is best likened to acupuncture, without the needles. It’s an ancient Chinese acupressure therapy, combined with modern talking psychology.
EFT involves gently tapping on certain acupressure points around the face and upper body while talking through the issue to be resolved. This can be done with a licensed practitioner, or you can learn to use tapping for yourself, it’s an amazing self-help tool.
Tapping works with a range of mental health issues including stress, anxiety, negative thought patterns, limiting beliefs, depression, trauma, PTSD and pain.
It has actually been around for many thousands of years, used by the ancient Chinese. It was innovated in more recent year by Gary Craig in America in the late 1980’s after he trained in Roger Callaghan’s Thought Field Therapy (TFT).
By tapping gently on certain meridian end points, while talking through the presenting issue, there is an energetic release. By tapping, we are able to free the mind and body from old programmes and patterns that are keeping us stuck.
Psychological and emotional issues are often connected to negative old emotions of the past. However, they no longer serve us. Through the use of tapping, we can let them go.
Tapping works as an amazing stress reduction and stress management tool and working through a range of emotions that negatively impact our mental health such as low mood, negative thought patterns, feelings of helplessness, or inability to cope with pressures and feelings of overwhelm.
It actually helps us to feel more in charge with our lives by helping us be more resilient to daily challenges that life throws at us with can impact our mental health both in the short term and over time.
There is much science behind this technique which shows us when we tap, we lower the stress hormone cortisol. This has been measured in numerous clinical trials.
Working on ingrained negative thought patterns and limiting beliefs, tapping works directly with the subconscious mind, allowing you to gently let go of limiting beliefs, which can often be connected to the root of mental health issues.
Tapping reduces the stress hormone cortisol in the body which is done by calming down a part of the brain within the limbic system called the amygdala which is responsible for encoding negative emotions, including stress, anxiety and trauma. It is also the part of the brain that controls our stress response and emits those stress hormones.
Neural pathways wiring the brain aren’t fixed in place. We are constantly being shaped by experience. The brain is therefore seen as malleable, a term to describe this is ‘neuroplasticity’.
With every repetition of a thought or emotion, we reinforce a neural pathway. With each new thought, we begin to create a new way of being. These small changes, frequently enough repeated, lead to changes in how our brains work.
What tapping does is helps change these neural pathways. It does so by sending a new, calming signal to the amygdala. So, rather than holding onto the negative emotion, or belief that is linked to that emotion, we can let it go. So tapping allows us to let go the emotional connection, or ‘charge’ from a past negative experience.
In this way, it is an amazing technique at helping us let go of past trauma and works amazingly well for Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) which has been measured in numerous clinical trials. The event will remain in the memory. However, tapping will help to let go of the negative emotional attachment to the memory. It does so by rewiring the neural pathways that have been firing and wiring, thus reinforcing the trauma.
We may have continued to re-experience the trauma through reactive behaviours such as nightmares. Or we may wish to repress or not wish to look at the trauma though unhelpful behaviours such as addiction or through physiological issues.
By using EFT, this helps us gently and effectively let go of the past, leading to positive and lasting change.
Tapping is increasing becoming much more widespread.
Why? Because it is simple, effective and it works. It is increasingly being used in hospitals, addiction and substance abuse centres, veteran charities and prisons. Many are using tapping including sports athletes and mindset specialists. Jack Canfield, international motivational speaker and author of the best-selling book Chicken Soup for the Soul regularly teaches tapping as part of his seminars.
In my many years of experience as an EFT practitioner, I see outstanding results time and time again. Clients who come to me with years of debilitating anxiety, clinical depression, trauma and PTSD to name but a few. They even often surprise themselves at how quickly and effectively this works. Something that looks so simple, yet is SO powerful.
There is also much scientific evidence that supports the efficacy and effectiveness of EFT. More and more studies revealing changing in genetic expression and MRI image, research I am proud to be part of.