A few weeks ago I created a video titled “A few thoughts on how to use EFT on grief”, where I said that grief tends to come in waves. Meaning, we might feel relatively ok for a couple of days, weeks or months, and then maybe a certain date comes up, such as an anniversary, or we stumble upon a photograph of the person we lost, and we are “hit with a wave of grief”. Today I’d like to talk about two ways we can tap on these “waves”.
1) Continuous tapping, with no words: Sometimes when dealing with these waves it can be hard to come up with words, specific events, etc. so as long as we are somewhat “tuned in” already to what we are feeling, we can just tap without words. With this approach, you just think what you think and feel what you feel, and simply add continuous tapping to that “routine”.
2) On the other hand, If we were to do some Basic EFT, it’s useful to notice in those moments if there is any sort of memory or “scene” coming to mind that stands out more than the others. For example, if we are dealing with grief because of a romantic break-up, it might be a memory of your ex partner (whether a happy or a negative memory), or it could be imagining them having fun with someone else or taking that other person to meet their parents. Or it could even be a “what if” scene, such as “what would we be doing right now if we were still together?”.
Then, we can ask ourselves: what part or aspect of this scene seems to bring up the most emotional charge right now? And what emotion, feeling or sensation do I feel about that part or aspect of the scene, and where in my body do I feel it? Don’t worry if you don’t know how to label that emotion or feeling, we can always tap with whatever information is available to us at this moment. We could just say “this emotional intensity”, or “this feeling”, or “this ‘argh’ feeling”. We can then tap one or two rounds focusing on that one part/aspect of the scene.
After one or two rounds, we can ask ourselves again: “What part or aspect of this scene seems to hold the most emotional charge right now?” Chances are, there will be a shifting aspect that’s now coming to the forefront. Meaning, your mind will be focusing on something else (a different aspect of the scene) and/or you will be feeling a different emotion about it.
Keep repeating these steps until the scene feels more neutral in general and/or until you feel you’ve done enough tapping for the day.
If you notice other memories or scenes coming up, you can either write them down or tap only one or two rounds on them, but then whenever possible keep going back to check the initial scene you were tapping on, so that you don’t become overwhelmed trying to tap on too many scenes at once.
Like I said in the previous video, with EFT we can tap on some of these memories (both the positive and the negative) so as to make these waves less intense (less tsunami-like), less frequent, and so that they don’t last as long.
The desired outcome is not that we will forget about the person we’ve lost, but that we will be able to think about them without as much emotional pain. That in turn might help us feel more connected to them and/or to the shared experiences we had with them, as well as the learnings and insights we got from those experiences.
Now, if you suspect that a memory might be too emotionally intense and/or traumatic to work on your own, feel free to enlist the aid of a certified trauma informed practitioner, such as myself, to help you with that. The same applies if you feel like it might be too hard to keep track of all the different memories and aspects at play. Feel free to get in touch with me, even if only to ask me for some free advice or guidance on how to tap on something by yourself.