What Led Me to EFT
I, for all intents and purposes, was a successful woman with a happy life (or at least, I should have been happy.) I had an ideal family–married, two kids, extended family all around and a brand new house. I was well educated–I received my BA from Yale University and an MA in English Literature. I was successful in my career–I had just made a move to a college to teach writing and I was quickly advancing in leadership roles.
Still, I felt immense dissatisfaction and extreme guilt for feeling dissatisfied. Thus, began my journey to discover what was wrong.
I discuss more about my journey in my forthcoming book, including relating the twists and turns and what seemed like dead-ends. For now, I’d like this series of blog posts to focus on how EFT, or Emotional Freedom Technique, has been part of that journey.
It took me 10 years to truly understand the power of EFT and to gain the benefits from using it.
I learned about EFT by searching online for techniques to relieve stress. With the stresses of the my jobs–I was currently working a full-time job and a part-time job– and raising a family, I thought I needed to find ways to relieve my stress so I could feel better.
I found many articles discussing EFT and the many benefits people have experienced with it. Many of these articles were written by practitioners of EFT, including Gary Craig the founder of the EFT short-cut method. I read Gary Craig’s story and downloaded the EFT manual so that I could use the method on myself.
EFT Failed Me (or I failed EFT)
Despite all the stories that I had read about successful application, I didn’t find much relief. I thought tapping looked silly and for a long time I did not admit to anyone that I was exploring this method. I tapped on feeling silly while doing it which is something that Gary Craig recommended and still recommends. Still, I found no relief.
I thought about seeking out and working with a practitioner but the fees stopped me. How was I going to explain spending that much money on a therapy that seemed silly? What is a good idea to risk the money on something that might not work? After all, it had not worked when I tried on my own.
I was not only going to feel silly doing the tapping but also spending the money on it when it didn’t work.
I thought, “I’m smart and successful. I should be able to figure this out.”
I abandoned EFT before really giving it a try. But it kept calling me. I returned to it periodically when I remembered the stories of great successes or when I read another practitioner story but I still would not get results.
Western Medicine Failed Me
Instead, I turned to western medicine for more traditional forms of therapy for stress relief. This included visiting a psychologist, using cognitive and behavioral therapy, and taking anti-depressants. I tried exercise which only served to make me feel even more inadequate. I dieted, thinking that looking better would make me feel better about myself. I culled western culture for other forms of relief, including returning to my childhood religious community.
All my activities and my efforts produced no improvement. What was even worse, my sense of dissatisfaction was increasing. I was feeling more and more lost and confused.
My Realization: My Answer Can’t Come From Oustide
The problem was that I was looking outside myself for the answer. Even when I considered EFT, I considered it as an external method that would help me get rid of my problem. Using it in that way would not have brought results.
It took changing the way I approached my dissatisfaction. The mind-shift was necessary to know that looking for external strategies would not work without first doing the internal work.
Believe me, I resisted this new knowledge. When I finally accepted the mind-shift, I returned to EFT with renewed enthusiasm.
In my next post, I discuss Trying and Failing with EFT and the mistakes that I was making. Now that I understand the method and am getting amazing results, I know what I was doing wrong. I cover that in the next post.