The following is an excerpt from my new book, MenAlive: Stop Killer Stress with Simple Energy Healing Tools. The book is scheduled for release in June, 2012. If you’d like to be notified when it is released and to keep up with my latest work, please sign up for my free e-newsletter in the box to the right.
I wrote MenAlive to offer specific tools that were easy to learn and use, scientifically sound, and effective in preventing and treating stress that harms us all. The emerging field of Energy Healing offers many different approaches. After reviewing the field, I chose to offer four: Earthing, Heart Coherence, Attachment Love, and Emotional Freedom Techniques (EFT). This article provides an overview of EFT.
I first heard about EFT when I was having serious pains in my shoulder. I was told it was like “acupuncture without needles.” I tried it and found that it worked wonders to relieve my pain and allow greater movement in my shoulder. I was convinced it had helped me, but I didn’t understand how it worked. I got some answers in the book The Promise of Energy Psychology: Revolutionary Tools for Dramatic Personal Change written by EFT founder Gary Craig and Energy Psychology and Energy Medicine Experts David Feinstein and Donna Eden.
In the foreword to the book, neuroscientist Candace Pert says, “The Promise of Energy Psychology is a synthesis of practices designed to deliberately shift the molecules of emotion. These practices have three distinct advantages over psychiatric medications. They are noninvasive, highly specific, and have no side effects.”
This is the kind of medicine that makes sense to me.
“What excites me most about EFT,” says Craig, “is its application to physical health and wellness. I’m convinced more than ever that Modern Medicine has walked right by a major contributor to chronic and acute diseases. Our unresolved angers, fears, and traumas show up in our physical bodies and manifest not just as back pain but as rheumatoid arthritis, cancer, multiple sclerosis, Parkinson’s disease, and hundreds of other illnesses.”
“In essence, EFT is an emotional version of acupuncture wherein we stimulate certain meridian points by tapping on them with our fingertips,” says Craig. “This addresses a new cause for emotional issues (unbalanced energy meridians). Properly done, this frequently reduces the therapeutic process from months or years down to hours or minutes. And, since emotional stress can contribute to pain, disease and physical ailments, we often find that EFT provides astonishing physical relief.”
How EFT Works
Dr. Feinstein has expanded on the theories of how acupuncture works and has developed a 10-point theory of how EFT and other “tapping” therapies can heal:
1. Energies—both electromagnetic energies and more subtle energies—form the dynamic infrastructure of the physical body.
2. The health of those energies–in terms of flow, balance, and harmony–is reflected in the health of the body, mind, and spirit.
3. Conversely, when the body, mind, and spirit are not healthy, corresponding disturbances in our energy fields can be identified and treated.
4. Flow, balance, and harmony can be non-invasively restored and maintained within an energy system by tapping specific energy points on the skin.
5. Tapping specific energy points while holding fearful or anxiety-provoking memories can permanently change the way these memories are processed and stored in the brain.
6. When you bring to mind an anxiety-provoking memory, thought, or related cue, an alarm response is activated in the amygdala. (The amygdala is an almond-shaped group of nuclei located deep within the brain which helps in the processing and memory of emotional reactions).
7. The simultaneous stimulation of acupoints sends deactivating signals to the amygdala, initiating an opposing process.
8. The signals sent by the acupoint stimulation turn off the alarm response, even though the trigger is still present.
9. With a few repetitions the trigger no longer evokes fear, and this innocuous experience, which becomes the defining memory about the trigger, is stored in the long-term memory banks of the brain.
10. We still remember the event or situation that triggered the negative emotional response, but it no longer causes us problems.
If you’d like more information on EFT or the other Energy Healing tools you can use to reduce stress drop me an email at Jed@MenAlive.com.