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EFT Question Tapping

EFt Tapping Outdated ImageNote: This is one of 3,000 articles written prior to the updated Gold Standard (Official) EFT Tapping Tutorial™. As a result, it is likely outdated. It provides practical uses for EFT Tapping but you should also explore our newest advancement, Optimal EFT, by reading our free e-book, The Unseen Therapist™, and/or get help from a Certified EFT Practitioner.

Hi Everyone,

Gary Williams from the UK describes for us a useful approach for bringing up core issues and getting down to specifics.

Hugs, Gary

Part 1: Description
Part 2: Followup


By Gary Williams

Part 1: Description

The Emotional Freedom Techniques are evolving all the time with many successful and exciting additions added to the process, including the Choices method by Pat Carrington and other inspirations.  I am currently working with a new antidote to tail-enders that can be incorporated within the normal EFT process.

First of all what are tail-enders?  You may recall such great self-help books as “You can Heal your Life” by Louise Hay.  The book has a wealth of useful information; indeed that particular book started my own journey of self-discovery.  Featured heavily in the book is a popular approach to self help using affirmations for personal change.  The process is positive and useful to a point but sometimes working with affirmations in this way can be hard work and appear not to work so well.  Most of you reading this article have probably tried positive affirmations, and the results may have been mixed.  Why is this?

It is because of what Gary Craig calls the "yes-buts" that can subtly follow the affirmation.  We also call them "tail enders" and they play an important role in how our lives unfold.  What we are saying is that a positive affirmation may run up against your conscience and then that is when your unconscious mind knows that you are actually fibbing.  Affirmations can be helpful if repeated often enough and for long enough but they're really not that impressive in the final analysis.

An example of such an affirmation would be:  "I weigh 120 pounds." (when you actually weight 180 pounds)

This is Gary Craig’s thoughts on the issue of affirmations:  "(Often) affirmations seem to be ineffective only because there is a missing piece to the affirmation process that has gone mostly unrecognized.  It has to do with what is actually affirmed.  This is often not the affirmation that is stated.  In fact, it is frequently the opposite. Our affirmations are impressive in their ability to shape our lives.  If we simply listen to our own self talk we will hear glowing evidence of this.  Our self talk contains constant affirmations regarding our existing beliefs and attitudes.  So does our every day conversation.  These affirmations have brought us to our current status in our lives and confined us.  To truly harness the power of affirmations, we must make sure that the actual affirmations that are taking effect are the ones we want.  Therein lies our major challenge and an indispensable use for EFT."

The mind is a pretty powerful instrument and when hearing affirmations your unconscious mind would respond appropriately and find a way to punish you, often through some form of self-sabotage.  So to deal with the tail-enders we have to insert an antidote into an EFT statement to neutralise this issue.

In trying to neutralise the tail-ender, I would like to make my own personal contribution to the solution, a process that I think fits somewhere between Gary Craig’s “I accept myself” statement and Pat Carrington’s Choices method.  The problem with affirmations is that they are only statements and until your mind accepts them as a statement of fact, they have very little or polarizing (opposite effect) power.

If you have a thought in your mind with emotion … often enough and long enough ... you will eventually believe it.  We may come up with generalizations such as: Rich people are greedy, Life is hard, policemen are always … and we can all brainwash ourselves in this way and create a way of thinking about ourselves and our world that may not be true in reality but seem to be true for us in our own distorted view.  How can we get past this kind of self-sabotage?

The answer is to utilise questions!  As you work with the incredible power of the human mind you will find that one of its great strengths is that it loves to solve, and feels compelled to solve questions.  I have captured this power and combined it into an EFT statement.  I call this new process Question Tapping or EFT QT.

When I first started to use Question Tapping (EFT QT) with clients and students, the difference was profound and everyone reported having a different kind of feeling or energy when using the process.  Question Tapping is more investigative, motivating, honest, self-validating and real.  There is nothing fake or incongruent about EFT QT.  It's a strategy for achievement.

Here are just a few examples to give you some insight into the EFT QT process; more will follow as I work with this new approach:

Normal Affirmation

"I choose to feel good."
"I choose to feel good about myself."

Question Tapping (QT)

"How can I feel good about myself?"
"Why do I feel good about myself?"

This is especially powerful because not only is it a question programming your mind to seek out reasons to feel good, but also contains the positive statement, that you feel good.  When you ask yourself, "How can I feel good about myself" you're not trying to convince yourself of something you know is not true.  Instead you're asking your mind to look for the positive and the USEFUL, and this will quickly change your focus and is the quickest route to change your feeling from bad to good.

It is true that just saying, "I feel good" or "I feel good about myself" can be effective if there's some truth in the statement.  That is if you already feel good or at least okay, the positive statements will reinforce and heighten the good feeling.  But conversely if you are feeling bad or depressed you will struggle to change your mood simply by repeating, "I feel good," because you are trying to convince your mind of something it knows is not true.  Trying to convince yourself that something is true, when more often than not - it's not.

You are lying to yourself or deleting and generalising and this creates all kinds of problems in the mind.  But when using Question Tapping you are setting in motion the mechanism for your brain to find and focus on the solution and enter into a reprogramming cycle to seek and believe things which are positive and useful to you.

More EFT Question Tapping statements:

Normal EFT Affirmation
"I choose to like myself."
"I choose to like myself just the way I am."

EFT Question Tapping (QT)
"What do I like about myself?"
"What can I change about myself so I like myself more?"

Normal EFT Affirmation
"I choose to be successful."
"I am successful just the way I am."

The dangerous thing about "I am successful just the way I am" is that you might actually succeed in making yourself believe it, and once you believe such a statement you're stuck because it takes away your motivation and drive.  If you are convinced you're successful "just the way you are," you have no reason to better yourself and move forward.

EFT Question Tapping (QT)

"Why am I becoming more successful?"
"What can I do to make myself more successful?"

By the clever use of the word "more," it's telling your mind that you are already a success in some way, and then it's programming your mind to focus on using its enormous power to find and use ways to become even more successful.

This new process has so much potential and it fits neatly in with all the processes that we are currently using with EFT.  Shortly, at the Mind Body Spirit festival in London, I will be conducting a trial with over one hundred and seventy people using EFT Question Tapping (EFT QT) and I will let you know how we all get on.

Try the process for yourself and ask yourself, "What powerful questions can I ask myself to change my life for the better?"  See if you can feel the difference between the normal EFT process and Question Tapping.

Warm regards

Gary Williams


Part 2: Followup

The response to the Question Tapping article has been amazing with a flood of emails asking a variety of important questions.  One question that has come up in most emails is, “how do you do EFT QT?”

Hopefully I can give you some idea in the following article, but I am sure that you may discover other interesting ways to use EFT QT. I would be pleased to hear from you and how you have been getting on, so that we can develop EFT QT still further.

Amazingly some people have already started to use the process with what they have read and had great success.  The response has made me realize how important the QT process is.  Below I will give a more in-depth rundown on how EFT QT really works.

QUESTION TAPPING PART TWO

Let’s just start by reminding ourselves about some of the key concepts we discussed in the last article.  First, as you work with the incredible power of the human mind you will find that one of its great strengths is that it loves to solve, and feels compelled to solve questions.  So with Question Tapping we have captured this power and combined it into an EFT statement.  Each of us has a unique set of mental filters through which we see the world.  Information coming at us is "filtered" and either logged, deleted or changed. Questions help you to:

  • Increase the odds that your messages get logged rather than deleted or changed and enable the self-discovery process
  • Think rather than simply react to the situation
  • Cause the "new brain" or neo cortex to light up.

If you were to look at a special brain scan, you'd see lots of lights flickering on and off suggesting a high level of brain activity.  Some people prefer to think about the questions for a while - to reflect on them before answering.  Interestingly, questions stimulate both the brain of the person asking the questions and the person being asked.

Asking a question and listening to the answers is just like playing catch.  Questions can open doors you never thought possible and a question is really just an incomplete statement.  Thus, we are compelled to "fill in the blanks" and in doing so complete the sentence.  This process has so much potential and it fits neatly in with all the processes that we are currently using with EFT.  

Working with Question Tapping

Using question tapping can be a challenge for those who have just been introduced to EFT and the basic recipe, as the process can work best when you feed off the client’s comments and declarations and as with normal EFT there is a need to be able to be spontaneous, reacting to your clients comments.

These things can only really be taught in a relevant EFT course or workshop and obtained through practise and experience.  To be efficient at using Question Tapping you need to understand:

  • Basic EFT
  • What kinds of questions are needed?
  • What the questions actually mean?
  • How to use them efficiently and in the right order?

Normally we start with what could be called the highest level of question as the question deals with values (fun, freedom, love, authenticity).  This is also the level where you define your mission in life, or what you could term as your own personal mantra.

The type of question we are referring to is the “Why” question.  Asking this question means that you really have to connect to your inner self, and best of all to your feelings.

“Why” questions can be asked in many different ways but we should only use them to move the client on, and not get too stuck in past issues.  We must acknowledge and connect to any feelings from the past and cut down the diseased or negative trees in the emotional forest.  But with Question Tapping we are helping the client to develop more insights the same as we do with normal EFT but much faster and in a deeper way.

Some therapists are very focused on the “Why” questions and determining the “whys” of what the client did long before they present themselves for a treatment.  Your client may have stories of abuse when they were younger and how they eat food just to feel comfort.

So “why was that client overweight?”
Was it “because she ate to feel comfort?”

Overeating is often associated with all sorts of feelings that people are trying to cover up, and the emphasis is usually on finding out “why” the person feels that way.  As you work with your client they will share “their stories” as you look at the “whys” in their life:

Why are they frightened by authority figures?
Why are they nervous in crowds?
Why do they overeat?

When working at the why level, as said earlier we do need to work on some of the past issues but with Question Tapping we like to move the client in a future direction after working on the issues at hand.  So once the past is reviewed we can move swiftly to future challenges, such as “what” and “how” things can be achieved.

You can do this with the traditional EFT basic recipe and you may just want to start with a global round on the weight issue:  Even though I have this weight challenge…  As you become more experienced with EFT you will be able to come away from the basic recipe and that will free you up to become more creative.  After completing two or three rounds generically you can then move onto the “why”, “what” and “how” questions.

Past why:

Even though I have this weight issue, I wonder why I can’t make things better for myself.

Even though I have this weight issue, I wonder why I can’t bring myself back to better health.

Even though I have this weight issue, I wonder why I can’t do today what I need to do to bring me closer to my goal.

Even though I have this weight issue, I wonder why I procrastinate.

We may use the why question to work with the past but we may also use “why” to conceive what is possible and achievable in the future and define goals.

Future why:

Even though I need to lose weight I wonder why it is so important to me to lose weight.

Even though I need to lose weight I wonder why do I hesitate making a commitment to lose my weight.

By using the “why” questions we are using an authenticity check.  We now need to move onto the next level, the “what” level.

Ecology

When working with your client it is important to find out why your client may have the need to keep whatever the challenge is.  Be certain that they are ready to let go of the challenge that they are presenting.  Because in some cases if you take away an issue from them, they may find some other way of re-creating it, such as giving up smoking and then taking up eating large amounts of food.

Asking the following questions will help with any self defeating behaviour your client may have. Should they have any reversals the three-stage process below should help the client move forward.  You may have to do a few rounds before the answers emerge from the subconscious.  As the client works through all of the questions they may become aware of feelings and thoughts after tapping on one particular question, when this is so, move them on to part three below.

Part one – the “why” question.  Start with tapping the karate chop point with the global statement below as this gets the ball rolling: Even though I can’t lose weight, I wonder why.  Now do a full round of the basic recipe, tapping on all the points including the top of head: Why can’t I just lose the weight?

The top of the head point is situated on the governing vessel - GV20.  In Chinese Medicine it is referred to as the hundred meetings point due to its significance as a major connecting and energy centre of the meridian network.  In marma therapy - the original system for working with the points and energy channels of the body - it is used for controlling the mind and central nervous system. Some people also believe that if you tap the top of the head at the end of each round, the aura of the body lights up.

Part two - working on the reversals with “why”:

1) Tapping the karate chop and repeating three times:  Even though I can’t lose weight, I wonder why I am not completely ready.  Tapping on all the points including the top of head: Why can’t I just lose weight?

2) Deserve: Tapping the karate chop and repeating three times: Even though I can’t lose weight, I wonder why I don’t deserve to lose weight.  Tapping on all the points including the top of head: Why can’t I just lose weight?

3) Safety of self: Tapping the karate chop and repeating three times: Even though I can’t lose weight, I wonder why it’s not safe for me to lose weight.  Tapping on all the points including the top of head: Why can’t I just lose weight?

4) Safety of others: Tapping the karate chop and repeating three times: Even though I can’t lose weight, I wonder why it’s not completely safe for others.  Tapping on all the points including the top of head: Why can’t I just lose weight?

5) Fear: Tapping the karate chop and repeating three times:  Even though I can’t lose weight, I wonder why I am scared to lose the weight.  Tapping on all the points including the top of head: Why can’t I just lose weight?

6) Being deprived: Tapping the karate chop and repeating three times: Even though I can’t lose weight, I wonder why I may feel deprived if I lose the weight.  Tapping on all the points including the top of head: Why can’t I just lose weight?

7) Taking action: Tapping the karate chop and repeating three times: Even though I can’t lose weight, I wonder why I am not doing what is necessary.  Tapping on all the points including the top of head: Why can’t I just lose weight?

8) Identity:  Tapping the karate chop and repeating three times: Even though I can’t lose weight, I wonder why I believe I may lose my identity if I get slimmer. Tapping on all the points including the top of head: Why can’t I just lose weight?

Second round: The “what” question. 
After reaching new conclusions as to the drivers behind the behaviour we then look at what we can best do to deal with the issue.  This next question questions the previous answers and will take the client even deeper.

1) Tapping the karate chop and repeating three times: Even though I have this weight issue, I wonder what one thing is holding me back.

Tapping on all the points including the top of head: What is stopping me from losing weight?

2) Tapping the karate chop and repeating three times: Even though I have this weight issue, I wonder what one thing is hindering me from becoming the person I could be today.  Tapping on all the points including the top of head: What is stopping me from losing weight?

3) Tapping the karate chop and repeating three times: Even though I have this weight issue, I wonder what untapped potential lies within.  Tapping on all the points including the top of head: What is stopping me from losing weight?

4) Tapping the karate chop and repeating three times: Even though I have this weight issue, I wonder what action I could take.  Tapping on all the points including the top of head: What is stopping me from losing weight?

5) Tapping the karate chop and repeating three times: Even though I have this weight issue, I wonder what price I am paying for this by keeping it.  Tapping on all the points including the top of head: What is stopping me from losing weight?

6) Tapping the karate chop and repeating three times: Even though I have this weight issue, I wonder what can I do today that will bring me closer to my goal.  Tapping on all the points including the top of head: What is stopping me from losing weight?

Finally the third level is the “How” level:
"How” questions give you an understanding of the structure of the problem and the deeper motivations and thought processes that keep it in place.

1) Tapping the karate chop and repeating three times: Even though I have this weight issue, issue, I wonder how I can influence myself and my world in a positive way.  Tapping on all the points including the top of head: I wonder how.

2) Tapping the karate chop and repeating three times: Even though I have this weight issue, I wonder how I could improve even just 10%.  Tapping on all the points including the top of head: I wonder how.

3) Tapping the karate chop and repeating three times:  Even though I have this weight issue, I wonder how I can be refreshed and recharged.  Tapping on all the points including the top of head: I wonder how.

Here are some other creative examples by EFT Therapist Michael White:

Even though I need to lose weight I wonder How amazing am I ready to feel right now.

Even though I need to lose weight I wonder How does the Universe support me right now.

Even though I need to lose weight I wonder How can I make this easier.

As you work with the EFT QT process you will see that there is great power in asking a good question, especially when asked in the form of an inquiry.(An inquiry is a question you ask over and over, that does not necessarily have one "right" answer.)  You may find meaningful change as you form your own seriously considered answer to a selected question.  Any one response to any of these questions can have a powerful impact on your life. 

Thank you for looking at Question Tapping.  I am very interested in how you get on with EFT QT and welcome your emails so that I can share your thoughts and ideas with others.

Warm regards

Gary Williams

FOR MORE EFT HELP ...

Explore our newest advancement, Optimal EFT™, by reading our free e-book, The Unseen Therapist™