When we are suffering acute or chronic pain, it can be hard to think of anything else and, in particular, it can be impossible to imagine that the process of tapping on the body could help to ease that pain. But the only way to test it is to try it!
Emotional Freedom Technique for intense physical or emotional pain being experienced in the here and now is an even quicker process than normal – because there is no need for a set-up statement. One of the purposes of the set-up statement is to focus in on the specificity of the pain or issue but, of course, when you are right there, in the experience, it’s almost impossible to focus anywhere else! So, you can start simply by tapping on the shortcut points repeating something as basic as “this pain”.
As you tap, various things may happen:
- The pain begins to subside – keep tapping for “this remaining pain”
- The pain increases – “this rising pain” (add as much description as you can).
- The pain moves – chase it:: “this pain in my right shoulder/ left leg / stomach”
- You get ‘stuck’ – use a set-up statement and examine the construction of the pain, describing it in vivid detail: “This bruised blue, shiny, sharp stabbing pain that refuses to move from my groin.” Alternatively try metaphor or personification to describe it : “even though my boss is tying knots in my intestines…..”, “even though I have a hissing red snake coiled around my throat, constricting and suffocating me….”
Persevere and keep listening and looking for clues and triggers as they bubble up to the surface and tap on everything that comes up
Even though migraines run in the family so I just have to live with it …..
Even though I’ve learned to live with this leaden black cloud hanging over me ….
Even though it’s my own fault, I’m too clumsy …….
Even though I know I can never be free of this unbearable memory …
Even though pain is inevitable because I have arthritis …..
Whatever comes up is what you need to tap on – and keep checking in with yourself to see what, if anything has changed.Perhaps the most surprising difference with EFT is that you face the physical or emotional pain head on, hold it up and look at it, get right into it and accept that it is there – it is this acceptance that makes a massive difference. Ignoring it or ranting against it is resistance, and what we resist persists. This can be the hardest concept to get your head around, because we’re all taught from a young age to be stoic, to ignore it and it will go away. But if we acknowledge our pain, honour it and listen to it to find out what it’s trying to tell us, we stand a far better chance of letting go of it.