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Case Study Issue 126: Versatility of Emotional Freedom Technique (EFT) Applications

by Catherine Dixon(more info)

listed in eft, originally published in issue 126 - August 2006

EFT is best known as a therapeutic intervention to relieve emotional pain, toxic memories and collapse dis-empowering beliefs. It is also a highly effective stress management tool in situations of panic and overwhelm. The key to the efficacy of this simple technique lies in the practitioner's facilitation skills and how creatively it is applied.

EFT belongs to a group of therapies known as Meridian Energy Therapies (METs), also sometimes known as Energy Psychology. METs draw on knowledge from Chi Kung and Traditional Chinese Medicine, Kinesiology, Polarity Therapy, NLP and EMDR. Tapping the major entry and exit acu-points along the meridian channels, combined with a direct and truthful acknowledgment about the source of pain, creates an alchemical shift in the energy system. The effect of this shift can be likened to releasing pressure from a pressure cooker.

Case A: Martha

Twenty-six year-old Martha was a delegate on an EFT weekend training course and a graduate in Child Psychology. A recent argument with her boyfriend had left her feeling so unsettled that she felt forced to leave the room shortly after the introduction. In the privacy of the adjacent room I found her tearful and reluctant to continue the weekend. Mindful of time constraints, I encouraged her to express all her feelings without analysis whilst I tapped on the points. I then focused on sentences where I noticed an emotional 'spike' and applied rounds of EFT to release the charge. This calmed her down so she was able to link her current distress to her sister's untimely death. We applied EFT on various statements that best summarized her unresolved grief until her distress subsided. Martha waited a few moments to compose herself and then decided to rejoin the group. She completed the training without further emotional upset, and reported to feeling calmer about her recent disagreement, and more accepting of her sister's death.

Case B: Julia

Julia was a 35 year-old project administrator. She had been suffering from chronic back ache for two years. Partial relief has been achieved through conventional and alternative approaches and she was now looking for a more permanent solution. During the first consultation we worked directly on the back pain, describing the precise feelings, the exact location and the intensity of the pain. After two rounds of EFT the pain had subsided so I asked her if she could think of any emotional components that might be linked to the back pain. She immediately talked at length about a violent and abusive childhood. As she talked, I tapped on all the points without pausing to encourage the flow of the story whilst releasing distress. I applied rounds of EFT on specific sentences that carried a high emotional resonance, checking on the intensity level in each instance until she was able to integrate these sentences back into her story without distress. We concluded the session with a Chi Kung posture and visualization to ground the energy and sustain the water energy of the kidney and bladder meridian. To-date, her back has remained pain free.

Case C: Simona

Simona was a 30 year-old software programmer who headed a major project with a media organization. She was naturally a highly articulate, focused and enthusiastic worker, yet she had been feeling stuck and unmotivated with her life for several months. This left her unable to make simple decisions. I encouraged her to draw up a mind map of all the things that made her feel joyous and happy. In essence, Simona was musical, creative and a problem solver. None of her skills were being utilized in her current job, and she felt that outside obligations had prevented her from making the best use of her personal time. It also emerged that despite being singled out during childhood to attend a school for gifted children she 'felt stupid'. After clearing this feeling to a zero rating on a Subject Level of Distress (SUD) we also applied EFT to a specific event from school where she had been humiliated and made to feel stupid. This work released a great deal of energy around her confidence in her own intelligence, and she reported that she felt more authentic and had regained her confidence to trust her decision-making processes. Within two months she had changed her job and joined a choir.

EFT is an extremely useful adjunct when integrated into a core primary practice. The effectiveness of any therapeutic intervention relies on the practitioner's discretion to use the right tool at the right moment whilst being informed by a wider body of knowledge and understanding. EFT's ability to embrace a whole continuum of practices makes it a power tool without precedent.


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About Catherine Dixon

Catherine Dixon BA(Hons) RSA Dip HPD NLPPrac MNCH  is Coach, Trainer, Workshop Leader, Writer and Presenter with over 25 years experience in the field of personal development. She is known for encouraging clients to establish an inspiring, authentic life vision that incorporates a sustainable work-life balance. Her work is based on her knowledge and experience of business, sales and marketing, training, learning systems, personal development strategies, psychology, health practices, hypnotherapy, NLP, psychotherapeutic interventions and meditation. She may be contacted via Tel: 0208 748 2426;

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