Emotional Freedom Technique (EFT) is a method of healing developed by Gary Craig in 1995.
It uses tapping on traditional acupressure points combined with ‘talk therapy’ and can free people from a variety of unwanted negative emotions.
People have reported that EFT has helped them with issues such as phobias, anxiety, food cravings, public speaking and performance anxiety, physical pain, insomnia, attaining goals, muscle tension, and many others.
It is important to bear in mind that EFT is a relatively new technique, still in the early stages of research. However, there is a growing body of scientific studies which provide promising data on the speed, safety and effectiveness of EFT for a number of common issues.
The exact mechanism is not yet known, although researchers hypothesise that:
By tapping on the body's acupressure points while focusing on a problem or negative thought, the body's fight or flight response is calmed, enabling you to reprogram yourself in a way that serves you better.
By tapping on the acupressure points, different brain wave patterns are activated, opening up the possibility of consciously changing thoughts and reactions which are normally buried in the subconscious mind.
From a Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) perspective, tapping on these points improves the flow of qi (the body's energy). In TCM, pain (emotional or physical) indicates a state of poor qi flow. Good flow results in no pain. Points on all of the main acupuncture meridians are tapped on, so it is like a mini acupuncture tune-up treatment.
Dr Peta Stapleton, a clinical research psychologist, explains how EFT works:
Listen to Frances Robertson-Ritchie chatting with me about EFT and how it works on her podcast: