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An Inside Look at Energy Psychology and EFT

What's All This Tapping About, Anyway?

Art12_EFT_FreshAirHere's the inside scoop on powerful "new" methods from a therapist who has been using them successfully for 16 years... and a look at the results she has seen.

You may have seen someone tapping on their eyebrows, under their eyes, collarbones or on the back of their hand. Ever wonder what they were doing? Looks silly maybe, but no, it's not: it's one part of a very powerful mind/body approach called Energy Psychology.

Energy Psychology routinely

  • reduces stress,
  • calms negative emotional reactions,
  • clears up the residue of traumatic events,
  • diminishes fear and anxiety,
  • amplifies good feelings,
  • increases positive capacities and
  • promotes inner peace.

Sounds good? You bet. Does it work? You bet.

The "tapping" you may be familiar with, though, is only one technique among many in the larger field of Energy Psychology. In fact, sometimes tapping isn't enough...but more on that later.

What Exactly is Energy Psychology?

In a nutshell, Energy Psychology, or "energy therapy", is an approach to therapy that recognizes that our stress and distress are not only mental, emotional, and physical, but also energetic. Our invisible (to most) electro-magnetic energies are an important part of what holds our personal patterns in place.

All Energy Psychology methods unblock, balance and strengthen the "subtle energy" fields that are associated with our emotional issues. We now know that when we correct weaknesses in these energy systems, which we can easily do, we simultaneously strengthen and heal the mental, emotional and physical aspects of our distress.

It turns out that when we strengthen the energy fields, emotional distress and psychological negativity decrease or disappear.

And, it turns out, when we strengthen the energy fields with a positive intention, using the same techniques, positive feelings and capacities increase.

No kidding? No kidding. It's a tangible, detectable shift.

How Did Energy Psychology Get Started?

Art12_EFT_LightForeheadOver 20 years ago, a Clinical Psychologist, Dr. Roger Callahan, experimented with asking his patients to introduce vibration into acupuncture points (the points acupuncturists put needles into) by having them tap lightly on those points. He discovered that the emotional upsets his patients were feeling predictably diminished or disappeared! He pursued this idea, replicating it over and over. In the process he developed a systematic method for relieving all kinds of emotional distress. He called it Thought Field Therapy - that is, therapy on the energetic field associated with a thought - or therapy on a "thought field" - hence Thought Field Therapy.

Since Dr. Callahan's work, the general approach of Energy Psychology has exploded. The most publicized of the many methods that you may have heard of is EFT, or Emotional Freedom Techniques, a simpler version of Energy Psychology that involves repeatedly tapping on some of the acupuncture points. The beauty of EFT is that it is very easy to learn and use as a self-help technique. EFT has grown to be a world-wide phenomenon.

But that's not all there is to Energy Psychology.

By now, the field of Energy Psychology has developed to the point that there is a well-established professional organization that certifies Energy Psychology practitioners: The Association for Comprehensive Energy Psychology.

Why "Comprehensive"?

Sometimes tapping on acupuncture meridian points isn't all that's needed to dismantle a problem energy field. It has been found that working with other aspects of our subtle energies, too, will result in even more positive, lasting emotional and psychological shifts. Some of those subtle energy fields are the chakras, the bio-field, most often known as the aura or auric field, and other aspects of our naturally electro-magnetic selves.

We all experience these energetic "fields" in our everyday life.

By definition, a "field" is an "invisible sphere of influence", like a magnetic field or a gravitational field. When we focus on any unresolved problem or painful memory, we can tangibly feel the "invisible influence" of that thought in our bodies, its "field". Thinking about the problem or memory may make us uncomfortable, angry, fearful, sad, depressed, defensive or upset. These feelings can be very strong and be a powerful influence for us to act, or avoid acting, in some particular way. They can seriously limit our positive choices and pleasure in life.

How Does Energy Psychology Work in Practice?

Art12_EFT_DeepThoughtIn actual practice, the energy therapist will test the client's energy system while they are thinking about or feeling a specific issue to see what aspects of the energies need to be strengthened. (It's easy, and fascinating.) Then they will have the client do some corrective "energy exercises" while mentally focusing on the problem - nothing strenuous or painful. They may have the client tap on (introduce vibration into) a specific sequence of acupuncture meridian points. Or, there may be other corrective energy exercises to do. The client does the tapping and other corrections on themselves, so they can use them between sessions for even more rapid progress. Unlike most other forms of therapy, the client will most often experience an immediate shift in the specific emotional reaction they are having.

Either immediately (seemingly miraculously) or over time, the disruption in the energy dissolves, the person's experience of the distress disappears, and the issue is resolved.

Some issues are more complicated than others, but when we unblock, strengthen and balance the energy around a painful thought, memory or belief, and dismantle the associated field, we unlock the distress that goes with it and our actual feelings about the situation palpably shift for the better.

Why is this important to you: The Benefits of Energy Psychology Treatments

If you or someone you know is having a difficult emotional time, a licensed psychotherapist who uses Energy Psychology methods as part of their approach can offer something that goes way beyond the usual talk therapy. There are often amazing results, especially with:

  • The aftermath of trauma or difficult life events
  • Fears and phobias
  • Anger and other acute emotional reactions
  • Anxiety of all kinds, and
  • Depression, grief and sadness

However, Energy Psychology does not only reduce the negative side of things, but also strengthens:

  • Personal power and optimism
  • Acceptance and forgiveness
  • Safety and security
  • Patience, relaxation, and inner peace
  • Aliveness, fun, and the ability to enjoy life and relationships

In addition to that...

Energy Psychology methods are designed to help a person not only understand their distress and where it comes from, but to move beyond it to palpably experience themselves as stronger and happier.

This approach may be an excellent choice for someone who is reluctant to take medication.

Energy Psychology offers practical self-help methods that can be used anywhere, anytime between sessions, in addition to the targeted therapy techniques used in the office. .

Does Energy Psychology Fix Everything for Everyone?

No, of course not. No approach does. Life circumstances, medical issues, interpersonal issues, cultural issues, and personal history are all to be taken into account. That's why I suggest finding an Energy Psychology practitioner who is also a licensed professional counselor or therapist.

But when we include the energetic component in addition to other approaches, it accelerates the healing of all other aspects tremendously.

How you can find a Comprehensive Energy Psychology therapist for yourself or someone you know?

I suggest that you take a look at this listing or the Association for Comprehensive Energy Psychology to find a certified Energy Psychology therapist in your area. Once again, I suggest that if possible, you find someone who is a trained and licensed professional counselor or therapist in addition to being a skilled Energy Psychology practitioner.

I wish you the very best in your journey to wholeness and joy!

Marti.

Marti MacEwan can be reached at 206-362-8167 or http://www.martimacewan.com/.

Photo credit: Fresh Air by by Jomzki, The Light Kissed Her Forehead by Ms. Phoenix, In Deep Thought by eldh