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Articles & Ideas

Core Issues

An excellent question to help find core issues

Important Note: This article was written prior to 2010 and is now outdated. Please use my newest advancement, Optimal EFT. It is more efficient, more powerful and clearly explained in my free e-book, The Unseen Therapist™.  Best wishes, Gary

Note: This article assumes you have a working knowledge of EFT. Newcomers can still learn from it but are advised to peruse our Free Gold Standard (Official) EFT Tutorial™ for a more complete understanding.

Hi Everyone,

Kathy Atkinson makes creative use of the question, "What decision about myself or the world would I have made at the time?” Read all the details about how she applies it.

Hugs, Gary

By Kathy Atkinson, EFTCert-1

Hi Gary,

I spent several weeks this summer preparing for the EFT Foundational Certification Exam and found the review to be very beneficial. One of my biggest take-a-ways has been the question, “What still bothers you about that situation now?” instead of asking, “How do you feel now?” I have been incorporating that question with clients with great results. I really appreciate the opportunity to be certified and for the valuable review.

I wanted to share another question that I have used very successfully with clients. I have been using your Personal Peace Procedure since I first began to practice EFT. I always encourage clients, and anyone that inquires about EFT, to make a list of all the situations and experiences that they wished would not have happen in their life and use EFT to clear, release or neutralize the emotional residue.

Lately, as I have gone through my past, I remember situations I wished would not have happened, but I don’t necessarily have any emotional intensity anymore. In order to explore whether that particular situation is still affecting me, I ask myself this question. “What decision about myself or the world would I have made at the time?”

Here is an example from my past. I remember as a young child being left alone at my grandparents’ home. I was visiting with my parents and while they were out on the porch with several other relatives, I was watching the television in the living room. At some point in the afternoon, my relatives decided to take a drive. There were enough people visiting my grandparents that they needed two cars for the trip. I learned later that everyone thought I was in the other car, so no one realized I wasn’t with them. When I realized that everyone was gone, I remember running about a half-mile down to the pond that was on the property. No one was there, so I remember running back to the house and standing in the driveway crying until they returned.

As I recall the story, there isn’t any emotional intensity left. I was curious to know if that experience is still affecting me today, so I asked myself, “what decisions would I have made about myself or the world because of that experience?” 

I’m not lovable.
No one notices me.
No one cares about me.
I’m invisible.
I’m forgettable.
I’m not valuable.

I then went through the list to see which statements might be “decisions” I would have made at the time that are blocking or limiting my success now. I then used EFT to reframe any statements that seemed to still be “true”. For most of my childhood and teen years, I do recall incidents where I felt invisible. That feeling is less so now, but still worth addressing with EFT.

The decisions we make as children or young adults can subconsciously become our identity and prevent us from achieving financial success, finding a loving relationship, or experiencing health and happiness.

I now encourage my clients to go back through their history and see if they can identify the “decisions” they made about their self-worth or safety that may be preventing them from living the life they desire. A client I worked with made a “decision” that she had to do all her schoolwork by herself. Somewhere along the way, the school system stressed that getting help was “cheating”. Now as a business owner, she has trouble asking for help writing copy for her sales letters because she feels like it is cheating or deceitful if she doesn’t do this herself even though this is not a task that she likes or is good at.

Together we reframed her decision that getting help is cheating to: successful business owners have a great support team, every great author has a great editor, and every great leader surrounds themselves with experts. Now she feels comfortable delegating the copywriting tasks, and several other tasks, that she previously felt guilty about hiring others to do.

I worked with another client that was not able to find a loving relationship because she experienced an abusive relationship in her twenties and “decided” that she was not good enough to be in a loving relationship. After working together and changing her decision from “I am not good enough” to “I am good enough”, she manifested a mutually rewarding relationship that led to her first marriage at age 50.

Here is an exercise that people can use. Create a list of situations and events you wished would not have happened. Use EFT to release any emotional distress or residue that you experience when you think about the events. Once you have neutralized the emotional disruptions in your energy system related to a particular experience, ask yourself, “What decision about myself or the world would I have made at the time?”

Dig deep and write down any negative or limiting beliefs that come to mind. After you have created your list, use EFT to release the negative beliefs you adopted that do not support who you want to be and what you want to achieve. Create a reframe by choosing a positive belief or affirmation to instill into your belief system.

Here are some other examples of situations and the decisions that might be made:

Mom slaps me - I am not good enough. I am not lovable.
Dad said I was stupid - I am not smart enough. I am stupid.
My house was robbed - The world is not a safe place.
I was caught cheating on a test – I am a bad person. I am a cheater.
I was punished for not sharing my toys – Others are more important than I am.

Here is a suggested EFT tapping sequence:

Even though I made a decision that I am not smart enough (good enough, safe, important, deserving, worthy, etc.) because of this incident, I am willing to release this decision and believe that I am smart enough (good enough, safe, important, deserving, worthy, etc.)

On each the other EFT points, repeat the negative statement that relates to your situation followed by “that is not true”.

I am not smart enough. That is not true.
I am not good enough. That is not true.
I am not safe. That is not true.
I am not important. That is not true.
I am not worthy and deserving. That is not true.

Now go through a round of EFT, repeat the statement that represents the new decision or belief you have made about yourself.

I am smart enough. That is true.
I am good enough. That is true.
I am safe. That is true.
I am important. That is true.
I am worthy and deserving. That is true.

You owe it to yourself to release any decisions that are no longer valid and are limiting your success. You owe it to yourself to make new decisions that empower you and lead you to success.

“Sometimes it’s the smallest decisions that can change your life forever.” Keri Russell

Thanks so much for all you do,


Creative Life Coaching

Kathy Atkinson, EFTCert-1


Explore our newest advancement, Optimal EFT™, by reading my free e-book, The Unseen Therapist™. More efficient. More powerful.