by Amy Medling, founder of PCOS Diva
If you have been following PCOS Diva for a while, then you know I am always looking for ways to improve my health and manage my PCOS naturally. There is one tool in my toolbox that I have not shared with you yet. I’ve been holding out. I guess I thought you might think I am a little crazy, as if the Oil-pulling post was weird enough.
I’d like to introduce you to the Emotional Freedom Technique (EFT), otherwise known as “Tapping”. This tool has vastly improved my stress levels and quality of life. Tapping has finally hit mainstream, which I define as being discussed on the Dr. Oz. show. So, I feel like it time for me to come out the closet.
What is EFT?
EFT was developed by a Stanford engineer named Gary Craig in 1993. EFT is a specific algorithm for “tapping” on energy meridian endpoints which sends a calming response to the body. You are probably wondering how tapping on “energy meridians” can help with anxiety and overall wellbeing?
If you think about it, our bodies haven’t changed all that much from our hunter-gatherer ancestors. When we feel threatened or in danger, the part of the brain called the amygdala, begins to fire off and we go into what’s called Fight or Flight Mode. This is the area of the brain where stress response begins. In a moment’s notice our body reacts to a perceived threat by increasing our heart rate, pumping adrenaline through our body, our muscles tense up our body is ready to either fight or run away. The problem that we face is that in this modern day, is that our amygdala cannot tell the difference between a real threat or a perceived one so, getting into a heated discussion with your boss can create the same physical response our ancestors had when faced with a wild beast.
Tapping on these end points of the meridian sends a calming response to the body and the amygdala recognizes that it’s safe. To take it one step further, doing the tapping while imaging or discussing a stressful event counteracts that stress and reprograms the response to it.
When you focus on your stressor while you tap on the energy meridian endpoints or acupressure points, you will find that you can have the same thought but without having the physical anxiety. This is so key because it allows you to easily let go of whatever stressor or negative thought is bothering you by replacing it with a much more empowering thought.
Science supports this too. Research at Harvard Medical School over the past decade has shown that stimulation of selected meridian acupoints decreases activity in the amygdala. (1)
There is much, much, more to this, but that is the explanation in a nutshell.
How do I start?
If you are anything like me, tapping will seem strange at first. It might seem a little new age-y and out there but you have to trust me on this, and just give it a try. It may take a bit of practice at first.
You first need to know the meridian end points or tapping points:
- Karate chop point -located under your pinky on the soft part of the outside of your hand.
- Eyebrow point – located in the inside corner of your eyebrow socket right where the hair of your eyebrow begins.
- Side of the eye – located on the outside corner of the eyebrow bone at the side of the eye. It’s not on the temple; it’s actually on the bone.
- Under the eye – located on the bone just underneath your eye,
- Under the nose – located under your nose, between your nose and lip.
- Chin – not on your chin but really on your crease between your lip and your chin.
- Collar bone – use your entire hand and tap on your chest where a man’s bowtie would lie.
- Under arm – where your bra strap lies under your armpit.
- Top of the head
How to go through a tapping sequence?
- Rate your issue – Begin by giving your feeling, whether it’s physical or emotional, a number. So if you’re tapping on a physical symptom, ask yourself, “On a scale of one to ten, how painful is it, ten being very painful, one you barely feel it.” When measuring emotions, you can ask yourself, “How much anxiety do I feel on a scale of one to ten?”
- Craft a set up statement – “Even though I am anxious about the presentation I am giving tomorrow, I accept myself.”There are different variations to this. Some people say, “I love and accept myself,” or “I accept myself and how I feel.” This is what causes some weirdness. It can seem strange to many of us to say that you love and accept yourself. Perhaps you fear that accepting yourself means you accept your current situation so nothing will change, yet it’s our inability to accept ourselves that keeps us stuck.
- Tap on the karate chop while you tap on the karate chop point, repeat the set up statement three times.
- Tap on the other points while simply saying how you feel. Just yourself to just be honest with how you feel. It’s not really about using the perfect words. It’s about saying the words that bring up the emotion and energy that you want to clear. Tap with your fingers on one side or the other or both together (I prefer both) 5-7 times at each point.
- Take a deep breath once you have finished the sequence. and rate the intensity of your issue again.
- Repeat until you get the relief you desire.
Tapping brings your energy back to balance so negative emotions can’t stay there. Your natural balance state is one of happiness and joy. You were born with the natural ability to feel joy.
This tapping technique can be used for a variety of issues. From anxiety, chronic pain, increasing fertility, overcoming addiction, fear, weight control, financial abundance, stress reduction and so much more.
For more info on tapping I recommend:
The Tapping Solution by Nick Ortner