By Dr. Ann Barnet
Emotional Freedom Technique (also known as EFT) is a mindfulness technique that combines elements of Traditional Chinese Medicine and Cognitive Behavioral Therapy. It has been around for decades and thousands of studies have validated its effectiveness.
This is a tool to calm the nervous system while awareness is concentrated on uncomfortable emotions, traumatic memories or limiting beliefs. EFT can facilitate healing biochemical responses, like the release of the “bonding” hormone oxytocin and other feel-good neurochemicals.
Emotional Freedom Technique appears to work by inhibiting activity of the amygdala (one of the primitive areas of the brain that controls that our survival instinct to flee at the first sign of danger.) This part of our reptilian brain served our ancestors well, when we were fleeing from predators in the wild. In modern times, our amygdala is often overly-sensitive and reacts jarringly if even a perceived (and often innocuous) stimulus is encountered.
How is it performed?
Focus your attention on an uncomfortable emotion or physical sensation
Tap on an acupuncture point pictured below
Take a deep breath with a prolonged and audible exhale
Lovingly accept what you are experiencing
Here is a diagram of the basic acupuncture points used in EFT:
At first glance, this may appear overly basic- in reality it is a proven technique that can help restore balance to our nervous system. I believe there is value and power in simplicity and in our innate ability to heal.
As with many tools and techniques, it is best understood through experience.
So please check out my brief intro video, try it out and tap along.