EMOTIONAL FREEDOM TECHNIQUES (EFT)
"With tapping, we can change how we respond and think about life around us. Today's triggers are about past events. Our neural pathways are built on layers of learned behavior. We usually make the same choices again and again."
Sherrie Smith, Joy Druse, et. al
What is EFT?
Emotional Freedom Techniques (EFT) is a mind/body therapeutic intervention that can be used
as a self-help technique. It is described as a brief intervention combining cognitive therapy,
exposure therapy, and somatic manipulation of acupressure points on the face and torso to
improve physical and emotional health. The stimulation of the acupuncture meridian or
acupoints while tapping on them with the fingertips is how EFT became known as “Tapping.”
According to the developer, Gary Craig, negative emotions, and physical pain are caused by a
disruption in the bodies energy system. Emotional Freedom Techniques/Tapping can bring our
bodies back into balance. By stimulating the acupoints also known as energy hot spots, tapping
can reduce stress and negative emotions, ultimately restoring balance and healing.
How does EFT work?
As we go through our daily life our brain is constantly scanning our environment. The amygdala
is one of the parts of our brain that is scanning the environment. It’s this structure that is also
called the alarm center of the brain. As it scans the situations, the amygdala will ask the
hippocampus (memory center) “is this situation safe?” If the answer is “no, this is not safe” a
cascade of events occurs within our brain and the brain stem resulting in the release of cortisol.
Cortisol is the stress hormone that increases blood sugar, suppresses the digestive system, and
alters the immune system response. Too much cortisol can have negative physical impacts to
our bodies as well as our mood and motivation. Emotional Freedom Techniques/Tapping signals
to the amygdala to calm down. When the amygdala can become calm, the other systems in our
bodies will also come back to regulation from dysregulation.
By tapping down the body on our acupoints when thinking about a negative stressor or thought
we are giving our brain a new pairing with those negative stressors/thoughts. The negative
thinking patterns break down faster because the emotion that maintains the negative thought
or any resistance is addressed.
Who should use EFT?
Research in the mental health field over the past 25 years has determined repeatedly that
stress and trauma are stored in our bodies just as deeply as in our brains. The disciplines such
as Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing, yoga, tai chi, massage, and acupuncture
are based on a mind-body connection to treat depression, anxiety, stress and other
psychological disorders. Emotional Freedom Techniques is a body-centered therapy used to
provide treatment for the following conditions:
Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder
Intrusive thoughts/ruminating thoughts
Performance concerns; athletic, career, school
Emotional Freedom Techniques can be used as a stand-alone therapy for anxiety, depression,
stress, trauma, or a variety of other mental health concerns. It is also effective as a treatment in
conjunction with Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing (EMDR), Cognitive Behavior
Therapy (CBT), Dialectical Behavior Therapy (DBT), or Exposure Therapy.
Will EFT work for me?
Tapping is simple and painless. It can be learned by anyone. Once you learn the set up and
pattern of EFT/Tapping you can use this technique to aid in your own healing. You will become
more in charge of your thoughts and feelings and can reclaim your brain and body balance.
If you think that EFT could potentially be impactful for you, please contact us below for more information on how we can help you.