In this Quick Start Guide we introduce you to how Energy Tapping can bring you quick, effective RELIEF from stress, anxiety, overwhelm, pain and suffering, distressing thoughts, disturbing memories, and limiting beliefs.
What is Energy Tapping?
We humans touch, hold, pat, and rub ourselves for comfort… and always have. We feel powerful emotions… some that feel good and some that feel bad. And we talk to ourselves… and our self-talk is often critical rather than accepting and encouraging.
Energy Tapping is a simple and easy-to-use process where you: tune into your body-mind, speak a truth about how you feel right now, and choose how you’d like to feel… all while tapping on specific natural comfort points. This unique formula helps you shift your physical and emotional energy in the direction of relief… towards feeling really good.
Tapping gives you instant access to relief at your fingertips in ways affirmations alone do not. Spending a few minutes tapping can bring intense emotions down to manageable levels and allow new insights and options to come to mind.
Not only can Energy Tapping bring relief from negative emotions, it can help you remove blocks to deep and abiding happiness. Tapping on long-standing fears, old traumas, and negative self-worth will open the door to more peace and joy in your life.
Do you want to change old habits? How many times have you known what to do and just not been able to carry through? Energy Tapping is a wonderful asset to get you unstuck. Many people find that tapping can shift their attitude. Instead of requiring effort and willpower, they find themselves moving ahead naturally and easily.
You can even use Energy Tapping to relieve physical pain. Most physical pain has an emotional component. By tapping on the pain—along with any guilt, shame, anger, resentment, worry, or frustration behind it—many people find the pain decreasing or even disappearing entirely.
Why not give it a try?
Where Did Energy Tapping Come From?
Have you ever seen someone rub their forehead when they were stressed? Or stroke their chin when they were struggling with an idea? Or clutch the base of their throat when shocked? And of course, we pat babies to soothe them when they are upset. Touch is comforting. We’re wired for it. Tapping is a gentle form of soothing touch.
There are some key points where the flow of the body’s energy is more “accessible.” Such points were discovered and documented a long time ago. In fact, the Chinese have been stimulating these points through touch (acupressure) and needles (acupuncture) for over 5000 years! It’s also from traditional Chinese medicine that we learned about the flow of vital energy (chi or qi) along meridian pathways. Since the tapping points are found on these meridians, Energy Tapping is also known as Meridian Tapping.
Starting in the 1960’s and 70’s with George Goodheart and John Diamond and further refined in the 80’s and 90’s by Roger Callahan, Patricia Carrington, Gary Craig, Fred Gallo, Donna Eden, Carol Look, and many others, the benefits of tapping on the meridian acupoints has been extensively documented. Experience shows that tapping can shift our beliefs and thoughts quickly and with much less pain than conventional therapies.
There are lots of theories on how and why it works, but no one can say for sure. (We just see the positive results.) Scientific studies do show that the electrical resistance in the skin at the meridian acupoints is much lower than the rest of the body. Brain wave studies show energy tapping affects the deep subconscious.
However it works, tapping seems to activate our body’s innate self-healing intelligence. Case histories abound showing almost miraculous changes in anxieties, fears, and phobias. Some people report “one minute miracles” where long lasting changes occur in minutes. Most people experience a more gradual shift, with profound insights and tremendous relief accumulating over time. Energy Tapping also allows us to see our emotions from a new, more empowering perspective.
Okay, How Do I Tap?
Getting started is very simple. It takes about 2-5 minutes to learn the basics. People even teach it to their children!
We encourage you to try it on just a few issues and see how you respond. We’ll even provide examples to get you started. After that, you will likely want to apply it to other physical and emotional distress you have. In fact, we encourage you to Try It On Everything!
With two or three fingers of either hand, tap with your fingertips lightly on the locations shown in the Tapping Points Diagram. As you do, you will repeat a phrase to help focus on the emotional and physical feelings. Use the same pressure you would use if you were tapping on a table to make a drumming sound. You want to make contact, but not hurt yourself or cause discomfort. Tap roughly 3-7 times in each location. Tap, tap, tap, tap, tap, tap, tap. If you have long fingernails, use the pads near the end of your fingers to tap.
We start by tapping on the Karate Chop point where we typically make 1-3 “Even though” statements (to tune into your body-mind, your emotions, and give the energy a direction towards relief)… while tapping continuously. This is the area of your hand that you would use to “karate chop” something. Tap with the other hand, using your fingertips. (Some people rub the Sore Spot as an alternative to the Karate Chop point. It is located about four inches down from the point of the collarbone and a few inches out from your heart. You can rub this area gentle with a few fingers. Either location will work fine, so use what is easiest for you.)
Next, we move to the Top of the Head and use the fingertips on one or both hands to tap. There are a bunch of energy points here, so it doesn’t matter where you tap. Some people even use the flat of their hand to pat the entire top of the head.
Now we’ll work down the body. (This makes the points easier to remember. The order is not crucial; don’t worry if you skip one, and you can even do the points in reverse. Tapping is very forgiving.)
The Eyebrow points are located at the beginning of the eyebrow, nearest the center of the face. You can use the index and middle fingers together, on either or both hands, to tap the eyebrow points. (Some people start at this point rather than the top of the head; it does not matter.)
The Side of the Eye points are located on the bones at the outside of the eyes. The points are not so close to the eye that you blink and not so far away that you are tapping in the softer temple area. Using the index and middle fingers together, tap on either one or both side of the eye points.
The Under the Eye points are on the bone located under the eye even with the pupils. Using the fingertips of the index and middle fingers, gently tap this spot under either or both eyes. Be gentle here; it is a sensitive area.
Now tap Under the Nose. The spot is roughly midway between the bottom of the nose and the top of the lip.
The Chin point is not really on the tip of the chin; it is midway between the bottom of the lower lip and the chin, in that indentation area.
For the Collarbone points find the start of one of your collarbones at the base of your throat and move about an inch down and an inch outward towards your shoulder. You can use two to four fingers together on either hand to tap the collarbone spots (or tap both at the same time). These are powerful points for stress and anxiety relief. Many people use the collarbone points all by themselves when they feel anxious.
The Under the Arm points are located about 4 inches below the armpits (about mid-bra line on a woman). You can reach across to tap (for example, lift your left arm and use the four fingers of your right hand to tap under your left arm) or lift your arm up and use the hand on the same side to tap, whichever feels more comfortable.
We often return to the Top of the Head and tap. This can help the round feel complete.
Of course, you can end at any point. You can start at the eyebrow or top of the head. You can leave out points, too. Energy Tapping is flexible and accommodates many variations. You don’t have to do it perfectly. Your energy system is connected so each point you tap resonates throughout the system. It can also be very helpful to tune into your body, see how it feels, tap where it seems to “want” to, and stop when it feels right.
These are the nine comfort points that are most often used in Energy Tapping (out of 400+ points that are recognized in acupuncture). They are also the primary tapping points used in Meridian Tapping Techniques (MTT) and in the short form of Emotional Freedom Techniques® (EFT).
Let’s Put It All Together
We’ll now combine the basic tapping sequence with tuning into your body-mind, speaking a truth about how you feel right now, and choosing how you’d like to feel.
Tune-in. Where do you feel a discomfort or distress? What does it feel like? Be as specific as possible. Ideally, include the location, the description of the feeling, and what the emotion is. (“Worried” is too general. “This tight knot of worry in my forehead” is better.)
Note your starting intensity (0-10), with 0 being no intensity and 10 being very intense: ____. (If you don’t know, guess. It helps you tune into the feeling and how it does or does not shift after the tapping.)
While continuously tapping on the karate chop point, emphatically say your set-up statement three times. This statement typically includes the first part that speaks a truth about how you feel right now (from step 1), followed by a choice about how you’d like to feel. In this example, we’ve chosen a statement of self-acceptance:
“Even though _______________ (I have this knot of worry in my forehead), I deeply and completely accept myself.” (Repeat 3 times.)
Tap on each of the points approximately 3-7 times, re-stating your issue (the reminder phrase) at each point: “This _______________ (knot of worry in my forehead)”.
- Top of head
- Side of eye
- Under the eye
- Under the nose
- Under the arm
Take a deep breath! (See the article Anxiety Constricted Breathing) for an audio tapping session on deep breathing.)
Note your ending intensity (0-10), with 0 being no intensity (it’s gone!) and 10 being very intense: ______. If it’s above a “2,” repeat the steps above. You can also make the following changes as you tap:
- Modify the set-up statement in step (2) to “Even though I still have some of this _________, I deeply and completely accept myself.”
- Change the reminder phrase to “Remaining ________.”
- Be more specific. What is the best way to describe what you are now feeling? The physical feeling or the emotion in the pain may move or change. That’s progress! You’ve got your energy moving!
More Examples to Get You Started
Example 1: Headache
Be as specific as possible. How would you describe your headache? Splitting? Dull ache? Throbbing? And where is it located? In this case we’re going to assume a throbbing headache in the forehead. Feel free to change the words to fit your situation.
Notice how intense the feeling is and rate it from 0 to 10, with 10 being incredibly painful and 0 being no pain at all.
Tap continuously on the Karate Chop point and say three times, “Even though I have this throbbing headache in my forehead, I deeply and completely accept myself.”
Then go through the points, tapping on each while you repeat a reminder phrase. You can keep the phrase exactly the same, or modify it a bit on each point, whichever feels comfortable to you. For these examples, we have changed the reminder phrase slightly at each point, but it is not necessary.
- Top of the Head: “This throbbing headache.”
Eyebrow: “I wish it would go away.”
Side of the Eye: “It’s right in the center of my forehead.”
Under the Eye: “It makes it hard to focus.”
Under the Nose: “My head really hurts.”
Chin: “I hate having headaches.”
Collarbone: “This throbbing headache and all that it means to me.”
Under the Arm: “This headache in my forehead.”
Top of the Head: “I ask my body for relief.”
Take a deep breath.
Notice how intense the pain is now and rate it from 0 to 10. You may want to repeat the same tapping sequence, using “remaining headache” as the reminder phrase. Or you may find that the pain has changed or shifted. It may no longer throb, or it might have moved from your forehead to your neck. This happens sometimes as your body processes the stress or energy that was causing the pain. You can tap another round using the new location or sensation. As you chase the pain, you are clearing stress from your body.
Example 2: Frustration
Again, be as specific as possible. How would you describe your frustration? Who or what caused it? And where is it located? We’re going to use a common frustration of being stuck in traffic on the way to work, and we’ll assume that you’re feeling it in your stomach. Feel free to change the words to fit your circumstances.
Notice how intense the feeling is and rate it from 0 to 10, with 10 being incredibly frustrating and 0 being no frustration at all.
Tap continuously on the Karate Chop point and emphatically say three times, “Even though I feel really frustrated in my stomach because I’m stuck in traffic, I choose to feel surprisingly calm and confident anyway!”
Then go through the points, tapping on each while you repeat a reminder phrase. You can keep the phrase exactly the same, or modify it a bit on each point, whichever feels comfortable to you.
- Top of the Head: “This horrible traffic frustration in my stomach!”
Eyebrow: “I’m going to be late.”
Side of the Eye: “Why can’t they drive faster?”
Under the Eye: “Why do they all have to be on the road now?”
Under the Nose: “I feel this in my stomach.”
Chin: “I hate being late.”
Collarbone: “I hate being stuck!!!”
Under the Arm: “This frustration in my stomach.”
Top of the Head: “This traffic and all that it means to me…”
Take a deep breath.
Notice how intense the frustration is now and rate it from 0 to 10. You may want to repeat the same tapping sequence, substituting “remaining frustration in my stomach.” Or you may find that the emotion has changed or shifted in your body. Something specific might come up around the frustration, or you might feel angry at your boss for making you be there at a specific time. Again, this is normal. You can tap on the new emotion, issue, or feeling in your body.
Sometimes it helps to say the words very intensely. If you’re in a safe place, you can even shout them. Say what you’re feeling as you tap. The intensity may go up briefly as you tune into the emotions, but as you continue tapping, you will find relief… perhaps even permanently.
Example 3: Nail Biting
Notice the emotion you are feeling when you are about to bite your nails (or another habit you would like to change). Is the emotion… Anger? Anxiety? Boredom? Fear? Where do you feel that emotion in your body? We’re going to use an example of nail biting aggravated by anxiety that you feel in your throat. Feel free to change the words to fit your situation.
Record how intense the desire to bite your nails is right now. Rate this from 0 to 10, with 10 being incredibly strong (impossible to resist) and 0 being no desire at all.
Tap continuously on the Karate Chop point and say three times, “Even though I feel anxious in my throat, and I bite my nails when I’m anxious, I’m in the process of deeply and completely accepting myself anyway.”
Then go through the points, tapping on each while you repeat a reminder phrase. You can keep the phrase exactly the same, or modify it a bit at each point, whichever feels comfortable to you.
- Top of the Head: “I hate that I bite my nails.”
Eyebrow: “I wish I could stop.”
Side of the Eye: “It seems to get worse when I’m anxious.”
Under the Eye: “Why do I keep doing this?”
Under the Nose: “There’s got to be a better way.”
Chin: “I hate how my nails look.”
Collarbone: “I’m letting go of the stress.”
Under the Arm: “I don’t want to keep biting my nails.”
Top of the Head: “I choose to feel surprisingly relaxed anyway.”
Take a deep breath.
How intense is the desire to bite your nails now? Rate it from 0 to 10. You may want to repeat the same tapping sequence, substituting “remaining nail biting anxiety.” Or you may find that you are clearer about what makes you want to bite your nails, or what makes you feel anxious. Use this new information and tap!
Just the Beginning!
This Quick Start Guide to Energy Tapping is just the beginning. Just like there is much more that you can do with computers than email, there is SO much more that Energy Tapping can do for you when applied artfully to specific areas of your life. Also, if the physical or emotional issues are complex, or you’re not getting results on your own, work with a coach or other professional. It’s easy to rub your own belly; harder to rub your own back. Get help! This especially applies to disturbing memories as well as emotionally charged specific events tied to negative beliefs about yourself or your potential.
Other Names You’ll Hear…
Energy Tapping is a generic name for this leading-edge approach to physical and emotional relief and self-empowerment. Meridian Tapping Techniques (MTT) is another name you’ll hear, along with just “Tapping.” Trademarked tapping techniques include Roger Callahan’s Thought Field Therapy® (TFT) which was evolved and simplified by Gary Craig into the very popular Emotional Freedom Techniques® (EFT). There are dozens of other derivatives as well.
Tapping techniques are a part of several overlapping fields of scientific exploration: energy therapy, energy medicine, energy psychology, meridian energy therapy, energy-centered bodywork, and more. Tapping continues to evolve. All of us who are passionate about living a thriving, abundant, emotionally free life continue to invest our time, energy, heart, and co-creativity into expanding the state of the art of all “vibrational technologies.”
Tapping Variations You’ll See…
Our short form of Energy Tapping drops the complicated 9-gamut procedure that is part of Gary Craig’s long form of EFT® (still included in his 2009 manual and basic videos). Craig himself rarely uses that procedure in his more recent work, and most experts have found tapping works as well or better without it. Also, some practitioners start or end at different points, or may include or exclude the top of the head points. Some include points on the fingers. Others include other meridian acupoints (there are over 400). Some rub the sore spots (shown on the tapping diagram) rather than tapping the karate chop. As far as we can tell, these variations are stylistic rather than substantive. If it’s working for YOU, you’re doing it right.
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