EFT for Anxiety Busting
Anxiety* affects everyone at some point in their lives, but some people experience it a lot of the time. The experience of anxiety could be likened to the feeling of being pursued by a dangerous animal when in fact there is no emergency. It is useful to us if there is some impending danger, but a real nuisance if we experience it on a daily basis and without apparent reason or cause. Other signs and symptoms include: fearfulness or fretting; feeling insecure; fast pulse rate; sweaty palms; fast and shallow breathing; feeling powerless; fear of losing control; trouble concentrating because of persistent worrying.
In EFT we can work with anxiety in many different ways. In positive EFT we can use a positive word and simply tap on that word. ‘calm’ might be a useful word, or ‘peace’ or ‘confidence.’ Whatever the person feels that they would like to feel more of. The ‘tap and talk’ technique can be helpful where the individual voices their worries or concerns whilst tapping. If we can learn to hear what the anxiety voice is saying then we can also answer it back, effectively reassuring ourselves. For example, if it says ‘you will fail the driving test, you’re so nervous now you are going to… and then you’ll have to go through all of this again…’ and so on. How would you respond to a friend who said this? Learn to respond to the anxiety voice as you would a good friend who you care about. Use EFT when you are feeling okay rather than always waiting until you are very anxious. EFT might stop the rise of anxiety or even prevent it from coming. With persistence you can make long-lasting changes. Depending on the severity you may need initially to work with an experienced practitioner who understands anxiety.
People can have many root causes for anxiety. Some of the theories is that its hereditary, that we learn it from anxious parents or very strict caregivers in childhood, or that it is rooted in some trauma we have experienced. Wherever it came from, I believe you can overcome or at the very least dramatically improve it.
Developing an awareness of the triggers of our anxiety can empower and reassure us, when we can say ‘I am feeling anxious and that’s probably because…’ when we know what brings it on or makes it worse. Some people find that they are more anxious in certain situations or around certain people, or if they haven’t slept well. It may sound obvious but everyone’s triggers are in fact unique, and getting to know them is empowering. Future tapping can also help whereby you do EFT for a future situation, when you know an anxiety provoking situation is ahead. Finally, learning to breathe properly is essential in dealing with anxiety. This is because when you are feeling anxious your breathing naturally changes to a shallower breath, higher up in the chest which in turn tells the body there is something wrong and to be on guard. Taking slower, mindful breaths gives our body the message that all is well and promotes relaxation and calm.
* = If you experience persistent anxiety, then it might be advisable to talk to a qualified professional about it, and this article and video is not meant to replace that.