Ryan Haddon is a certified life and spiritual coach, hypnotherapist, and meditation teacher. She works one-on-one with clients all over the world and offers both virtual and in-person courses and workshops. She’s also a regular contributor to Tracy Anderson Magazine.
Have you heard of tapping? It sounds simple, because it is. Formally defined as the Emotional Freedom Technique (EFT), tapping is a powerful tool for improving your life on multiple levels: mental, emotional, and physical. It’s been effective at addressing a range of issues from anxiety and chronic pain, to addiction and financial stress.
What Is Tapping?
EFT is a quick self-help technique that helps you regulate your body’s response to stress triggers. Tapping is two-fold: You tap your fingers on nine specific energy meridians on your body, while repeating confessional phrases describing where you are in the moment, whether you’re angry, overwhelmed, triggered, sad, or physically uncomfortable. The nine meridians include the following, in tapping order:
- Karate Chop (more on this later)
- Side of Eye
- Under the Eye
- Under the Nose
- Beginning of the Collar Bone
- Under the Arm
- Top of the Head
Tapping draws on the ancient Chinese practice of acupuncture, which teaches that the body’s energy travels along specific pathways. The practice stimulates specific points on these pathways to improve the flow of energy.
Benefits of Tapping
Tapping clears the mind, and steers your attention to the present moment. In doing so, it lowers heart rate, blood pressure, and stress hormones by 43%. One of the major advantages of tapping is accessibility. It’s fast, it’s easy, and doesn’t require anything other than yourself. If you find yourself in a stressful environment—like a plane—it’s a practice you can do anywhere at any time.
How to Tap
- Compose a setup statement. Take a moment to identify what you’re feeling. To compose a setup statement, you first acknowledge the problem, then follow it with a phrase of acceptance. An example would be, “Even though I’m anxious about my interview, I accept myself and how I feel.”
- Begin to tap. With four fingers on one hand, begin tapping the Karate Chop point on your other hand. The Karate Chop point is the fleshy outer edge of the hand, along your pinky finger (the part of the hand one would use to karate chop a piece of wood).
- Tap while repeating your setup statement. Repeat the setup statement three times aloud, while simultaneously tapping the Karate Chop point. Now take a deep breath.
- Move around the body. Now, tap about five to seven times each on the remaining eight points. As you tap on each point, repeat a simple reminder phrase, such as “my anxiety” or “my interview,” to help you focus on the issue.
- Tap your way to more positive thoughts. Once you feel better, you can use the sensation to harness more empowering thoughts. You have to release the intensity of what you’re feeling before more loving thoughts can take root, so be patient in the practice.