Perhaps the Hippies were right!
Henry James (author) said ‘Three things in human life are important. The first is to be kind. The second is to be kind. The third is to be kind.’
Did you know that just having a kind thought or giving someone a hug can benefit your health? It has been demonstrated that in a happy frame of mind we experience a measurably different biochemistry from when we are angry.
When we are happy the level of oxytocin, which has profound anti inflammatory, pro-cardio vascular, pro-immune system, anti-aging and beneficial digestive tract actions (to name a few), is elevated (see Dr D. Hamilton, Why Kindness Is Good For You). Oxytocin produces a vast range of beneficial effects in our bodies, which can be stimulated by the simple act of being kind!
It makes sense therefore, if we want to improve our chances of living a longer, healthier (and happier) life, to modify both the way we interact with other people and how we think about ourselves.
As an example, carrying anger or a grudge from the past keeps us re-living the event in our mind, with the concomitant result on our biochemistry. Forgiveness doesn’t condone a miss-deed, but it does allow us to step away from the event and allow ourselves to heal. In the same way, counting our blessings focuses our mind on the good things, attracting more of the same to us through the Law of Attraction, in addition to increasing our oxytocin levels.
Scientific research has shown that our brainwave patterns, which reflect how we feel, are mirrored in the brain wave patterns of people around us. Therefore, if we think kindly thoughts, these will be passed on, to a degree, to other people.
Eckhart Tolle said ‘as long as you are unable to access the power of the Now, every emotional pain that you experience leaves behind a residue of pain that lives on in you’. Rather like Gulliver, tied down and held in place by so many ropes, bad feelings we nurture from the past prevent us from enjoying the moment, but Gulliver didn’t have EFT!
Ask yourself,’ ‘How do I know I carry this hurt?’ record the Subjective Units of Disturbance (SUD) level, on a scale of zero to ten, when the event is recalled (where zero is no feeling and ten is as strong a feeling as can be experienced). Then ask ‘if I didn’t feel this hurt, what would be different for me?
The answer to the first question can be used in the set-up statement, or use a broad based set-up statement if it feels more appropriate:-
Even though what happened was very wrong and caused so much pain….
Before tapping round with whatever seems appropriate:-
I was so hurt – I cannot forgive – It was so wrong – I can’t believe what they did – They just didn’t care – My feelings didn’t matter – It really hurt me – It was unforgivable
If the hurt is still very intense, dissociate from the event by tapping in the third person, by name, putting them behind an imaginary screen if necessary. Then change back to the first person as the SUD levels decrease. After a few rounds of tapping, when the SUD levels have dropped to one or two, the choices can be brought in.
I was very hurt and I still feel it now – All these years/months later and I still choose to hold onto this hurt – I must really enjoy this feeling, I must really like this pain – Maybe I can choose to let this go – It was wrong, but it’s not happening now, unless I consciously hold onto it – I can choose to let it go – I choose to be free of that pain – I choose to let it go
Tapping should continue, using statements that feel right, until the SUD level reaches zero. Use the answer to the second question to test the effectiveness of the process.
It’s interesting to use a mirror as an adjunct to EFT, where an individual studies their reflection before tapping and then again, afterwards. Perhaps the dissociation enables a more detached appraisal to be made. However, there are often perceived differences which can either strengthen the experience or bring into focus underlying feelings about ‘self’, which may need to be addressed in order to complete the therapy.