Emotional Freedom Technique (EFT) is clinically proven to clear stress, tension, fears, past negativity and limitations to ignite health, happiness and vitality. We catch up wtih Leena Haldar, an EFT trainer to understand it better. Excerpts...
Has Emotional Freedom Technique emerged from the East?
Yes indeed! EFT combines the science of acupuncture with using phrases based on psychology, where you tap on energy meridians with your fingers rather than needles while saying statements out loud. The treatment, which is clinically proven to reduce stress, anxiety, fears, and past trauma, involves lightly tapping on the acupressure meridians, thus unleashing the body’s own energy and healing power.
How were you introduced to it?
A few years ago, I was diagnosed with cancer. At that time, I was already teaching Louise Hays work (Heal Your Life workshops) so I knew that unresolved emotional upsets cause disease in the body. I realised that this was merely a signal from my body telling me to work on my emotional blocks. That is when I discovered a book on tapping by Jack Canfeild and at the same time my Reiki teacher recommended that I learn EFT professionally. She told me about the EFT Seminar being hosted in Mumbai by Dr Rangana Rupavi Choudhuri (PhD) from Vitality Living College. I was just freshly out of my chemotherapy sessions. I booked for the seminar. On day two of the event, I got selected for a live demonstration. That session was very phenomenal for me. I would never have identified the core issue that led to my illness but for EFT. When I completed my first training with her, I felt I had found my home. It was then that I decided that I wanted to master this technique to give sessions as well as to teach it.
Does having a degree in psychology or psychiatry help in EFT?
Yes it does. However, it is not mandatory. I am an interior designer by background, however I found EFT easy to use as soon as I learnt it. EFT is basically a self-help tool.
Are there any exams to appear for — to be recognised as a practitioner or trainer?
Yes, there are 12 case studies, 50 practice sessions, and a multiple choice examination and to stay certified, the practitioners have to complete 30 hours of supervision annually as well as complete 50 practice sessions. To become a trainer, there are exams and the trainer is taken through an apprentice model where they have to demonstrate a set of 110 competencies.
When you are conducting Level 1 and Level 2 of EFT, are there any set guidelines to follow? Can the participants with background of pain and suffering train in EFT?
Well, anyone who is interested in helping themselves and others is welcome to an EFT seminar. We do provide them with guidelines on how they can nurture themselves after sessions (it can be very intense at times) and the science behind EFT.
EFT is an excellent modality to bring pain levels down. It brings instant relief to the people I work with, and oftentimes within just minutes.
I have dealt with cases of uncovered core issues that had resulted in physical pain which the client was suffering for years. Like this senior citizen who had come to me as a last resort for the acute back pain that she was suffering from, for more than 20 years. She was surviving on pain killers when she came to me. We did about six sessions and during the course uncovered a significant memory of an incident from her childhoold. Her parents had gone on a cruise, leaving her and she had felt lonely and unsupported. She also had to take care of a sibling. Once we worked with this memory, her back pain started decreasing and by the sixth session, she was totally off painkillers.
Do men and women have similar grievances and responses?
I have found that mostly women are more comfortable speaking about their issues than men. They are able to open up more easily and express themselves. This however does not mean that men do not feel intense feelings. They absolutely do! However, I feel our culture is such that they find it hard to show their vulnerable soft selves. When I do sessions with men, I always factor this in.
When you are helping others to heal, do you also undergo a shift of emotions?
This is a great question. Yes, I find every client mirrors some part of my life. And yes I do get clarity too. However, as a coach, I have a daily practice of doing inner work and resolving my own issues so that I can be totally present for my client. This is something we recomend all our practitioners to do.
In most cases, the person has to come to terms with his problems — depression, anger management, alcoholism, smoking etc. So why the need to go through a healing process to arrive at the conclusion that I have to help myself or I can help myself?
Yes, that’s true. We all have to ultimately come to terms with our problems, accept complete responsibility and work with ourselves to find peace. In reality, what we see is that we are all aware of our problems, we are able to talk about it and even discuss it for hours. However, we may not have clarity of thought when it comes to a solution to the problem.
I have found that using EFT, I got to the root cause of why someone was stuck or not able to get a breakthrough with their weight, relationships, or finances — because they had underlying sabotage beliefs that were cancelling out what they wanted. Once this was addressed, the change with EFT is permanent.
In my opinion, the healing process is just that, finding a solution that helps to either solve the problem or make peace with it. After EFT sessions, I find that we are able to look at the same problem from a different perspective that is more comforting to us. We may even get clarity on what we need to do in order to resolve the situation.
What roles do the client’s family/friends/relatives need to play?
I feel their main role is to be supportive. Many a time, people expect their long standing problems to get resolved overnight. To have patience, allow your loved ones to find their solutions without any pressure and to provide a safe, appreciative and encouraging space is of prime importance.