Increasing your effectiveness with EFT, part 6.
How to use the EFT Gentle Techniques to start taking the edge off of something that might be too intense otherwise. Today we’ll review: Sneaking Up.
Remember the “Goldilocks and the 3 bears” analogy that I used in Part 3 of this series? Basically, the soup can be “too hot”, “too cold” or “just right”. The same applies to whatever we make the target-focus of our tapping. “Too hot” would be when the intensity is too high and overwhelming. And “too cold” is when it doesn’t bring up any intensity whatsoever because it doesn’t activate or “light up” the energetic and neural pathways that are connected to whatever issue we want to tap on.
So what do we do when we want to tap on something that is “too hot”? Well, the same as with a bowl of soup, there are ways of approaching it so as not to get our tongue burned, such as gently blowing some air on it, or starting eating at the edges of the bowl, where the temperature tends to be a bit cooler.
This is what the Gentle Techniques of EFT help us do: they allow us to start taking the edge off of something that might be too intense and overwhelming if we were to face it head-on, by putting some distance between us and the heat. So today we are going to talk about one of these Gentle Techniques, known as “Sneaking Up”.
Now, let me first mention an important caveat: even though I’m going to talk about how we can use these Gentle Techniques by ourselves, if you suspect you are dealing with a traumatic event (for example, something where your physical integrity might have been compromised), then I strongly recommend you work on this with the help of an experienced EFT practitioner. However, if the memory is quite upsetting, but not necessarily traumatic, such as an argument you had with a friend, then you might consider trying out some of these Gentle Techniques.
Ok, so what is “Sneaking Up”? It’s basically when you start tapping on whatever apprehension, fear, etcetera you might feel about working on the issue or memory you’ve chosen to work on, instead of tapping on that memory directly and head-on.
So how does it look? Well, first of all, you just take a guess at how high the intensity of that memory might be. Because if you were to measure it by thinking about it in detail, that might be very upsetting in and of itself.
Then, you begin tapping “at a distance” from the event. Instead of using the phrase: “Even though I feel all this sadness in my throat as I remember the time when my boss yelled at me in front of everyone, I accept myself anyway”, as you would in Basic EFT; you would instead tap on: “Even though just the thought of working on this memory brings up a lot of fear in me, I accept myself anyway”. And the reminder phrase would be “this fear”, or “this fear of tapping on this memory”.
Then after that round, you can ask yourself: “what comes up for me now when I think about working on this memory?”. If you feel quite relaxed about it, then you can start applying Basic EFT as usual. But if instead you still feel some fear, worry or apprehension, you just continue with Sneaking Up: “Even though I’m still anxious about looking at this memory, I accept myself anyway”. Or, if we are working with a client, we might need to tap on: “Even though I’m embarrassed to talk about this memory, I accept how I feel anyway”.
By tapping in this way, you are diminishing that apprehension so that the EFT process can be as safe and gentle as possible, as opposed to having to “grit your teeth” and feel really uncomfortable. And you are also working on the memory itself, but in a more indirect way, where you are literally taking the edge off. So when you finally start working on the memory directly with Basic EFT, you will notice it’s a lot less intense than it would have been originally if you hadn’t done those “Sneaking Up” tapping rounds before.
That being said, if after many rounds of Sneaking Up, it still doesn’t feel safe to approach that memory directly, then that might be a sign that it’s best to enlist the aid of a certified practitioner to help you work on it together.
That’s it for today. I hope this post was helpful to you. My name is Bruno Sade, and I’m a certified EFT practitioner with a mental health background as a clinical psychologist licensed in Argentina. I use EFT as a tool to help people (who speak English or Spanish) change their emotional reactions and also to help them overcome their fear of rejection.
And, I’d love to know: have you ever used any of the Gentle Techniques? What do you think about “Sneaking Up”? Please share in the comments below.