This is just what you say while you’re tapping your karate chop point (or collarbone point) but before you start tapping around the body. It helps to:
a) get you completely focussed on the issue at hand
b) overcome any psychological reversal – ie, any internal resistances to overcoming the problem
Asking yourself “How does it feel to have this problem?” (and really feeling it) can be very helpful, in terms of really sinking yourself into the problem. If you start to feel overwhelmed by it or emotion comes up very fast, you may find you can do a very short setup indeed.
Sometimes shouting the setup out can help solidify your commitment to dealing with the problem.
For issues of self esteem, or self image, standing in front of a mirror, looking yourself in the eye can be very powerful. It’s very hard to lie to your own face.
The key is that you’re trying to get some traction, hook yourself right into the problem, so you’re completely focussed on it, feeling it, as deeply as possible.
Aspects of an issue
It’s quite common, particularly with more complex, or bigger issues, that you may not feel like you’re getting any relief. This is ok, it just means you need to attack the problem from a different angle.
Complex issues will often have many aspects, or sub problems, to them. Some useful questions to ask yourself to help find these aspects are:
“what are the benefits to having this problem?”
“what has to happen before this problem disappears?”
“what will happen if I remove this problem?”
Again, as always, whatever comes in your head is probably correct – no matter how ridiculous it may initially seem. Always go with the first thing that pops up.
Once you have a list of aspects, then tap through each of those in turn. Each time you tap through an aspect, the main problem becomes easier to resolve.
Often you’ll have the benefit that even if you started with an enormous list of aspects, by the time you’ve tapped through a few of them, the rest of them will start to seem irrelevant, or have little meaning any more – they resolve themselves.
Other common causes of “stuckness”
- Dehydration (not drinking enough water) is the culprit the vast majority of times that tapping doesn’t work.
- “Energy toxins” is another common reason – basically anything that will interrupt the flow of energy around your body, and across your skin. Metals can do this, and some fabrics, so it’s recommended that you take off any metal you’re wearing (where possible) when tapping. I’ve never had any issues with these things, but feel free to give them a whirl.
- Try to be as specific as possible. Being too general can make it hard to get a real focus on and resolve the problem.
- Listen to your “inner voice” (your intuition). It really helps. It is very usual while tapping that odd things will pop into your head. If they seem even vaguely related, then say them. Just go with the flow. If they seem like a different, but connected issue, then make a mental note, and tap through that issue later. You’ll get much better results once you learn to listen and trust whatever comes up.
- Getting someone else to tap you, while you repeat what they say, can help knock through tougher problems. It means you don’t have to think about what to say, or where you’re going to tap next, you can focus completely on the problem.
- Be persistent. Particularly if it’s a tough problem, it may take a few goes before you can really get to the root of it and clear it out. Don’t give up, and keep going. Working on any aspects you can find will also help enormously. Some problems just take a bit of effort.
If you have a really big, tough problem, that has a lot of aspects that are hard to identify, a good suggestion is “Slow EFT”. In Slow EFT, you do the following:
Do your setup as normal. Then tap the first point (the eyebrow point), saying the reminder phrase over and over, and keep tapping that same point until you feel your reaction increase, and then die away again. When the reaction has subsided to a zero, then stop, take a deep breath, have a drink of water, and a bit of a rest.
Next, do your setup again, and tap repeatedly on the next point (side of eye). Wait for the reaction to well up, and dissipate again. Continue with each of the points until you’ve done a full round.
You will typically feel that some of the points have a much higher reaction than others. It takes a bit longer, but you can break it up and continue later, if you run out of time.
Slow EFT is excellent for really hammering tough, intractable problems.