EFT: For Self-Help or for Healing?

As EFT’s popularity increases and more and more people tap for themselves, I believe there is some confusion about its uses. Is EFT for feeling better fast or is it for deep, permanent healing?

The answer is both.

Many, many presentations of EFT are geared to what I would call “EFT for self-care” or “EFT for personal use.” This is a surface-level use of EFT though still very worthwhile.

Take for example tapping scripts. On YouTube, these are tap-alongs in which a person says words about a topic, say anger, and leaves a pause for you to repeat them as you tap along.  They can also be written. Either way, with tapping scripts, the words are necessarily generic. The leader doesn’t know you or anything about your specific anger, such as whom you’re mad at or what you’re mad about, how you feel anger in your body, etc. Nevertheless, tapping along with the leader’s words can still produce a reduction in your anger though it may not last.

Using EFT in the classroom is also a necessarily surface-level use of EFT. Teachers can use EFT to help a classroom of rowdy kids calm down fast. Test anxiety can be addressed in the moment with EFT. The child in the time-out corner can tap on herself to feel less upset.

I regularly teach EFT as a self-help, stress-releasing tool in a few hours. My students learn the basics of tapping and how to focus as specifically as possible on their own non-complex issues. They almost always feel better.

I steer my students away from tapping on their complex issues because this often opens the proverbial can of worms and they feel incapable of tapping on all that has been uncovered.

That’s where EFT practitioners come in and the possibility of deep healing. We welcome the worms in the can! We are trained to guide our clients to not only relieve distress in the moment but to heal the effects of trauma and to help them shift from a self-limiting (or self-destructive) self-concept to one of self-love.

This deeper use of EFT takes a number of sessions (though one traumatic scene can be neutralized in one session). The goal is not just to feel better fast but to feel better for good.

EFT is powerful in the hands of the skilled practitioner. It is also powerful in the hands of the novice who wants to feel better now even if only lasts awhile. You can always tap again!