I was obsessed with the CW hit television show, Jane the Virgin. The dramatic, modern telenovela follows main character Jane’s journey after a routine clinical check up left her inseminated by a specimen meant for a patient in the next room. The show is quite intense and there are several high moments of stress when the audience learns (spoiler alert) that the sperm donor is Jane’s married boss, her mother battles cancer, her husband fakes his death and her long-lost-father comes back into her life. Needless to say, the stress is real. To cope with all that stress, Jane’s therapist suggests tapping it away.
As I watched the show, I always thought what on Earth could tapping at your skin do to relieve stress?! But as I complete week after week of writing deadlines and social calendar events, I find myself tapping in unison. And shockingly, it’s helping me manage my stress. So if you’re stressed out and looking for a quick, pain-free, completely free option — try tapping.
What is tapping?
Like the majority of holistic tools — mediation, breathwork, journaling and affirmations — EFT tapping is a healing modality. Emotional freedom technique, aka EFT, involves tapping on different acupressure points on the body while reciting affirmations related to the situation you’re dealing with, be it stress or anxiety. Basically it’s acupuncture without the needles.
Developed in 1995 by Gary Craig, an energy psychology practitioner, EFT tapping allows the body to move and release energy while verbally speaking the pain or stress that’s impacting you, out of your body. The pressure points selected are considered energy meridians where your energy flow is trapped or blocked — tapping clears those blocks.
Essentially, tapping lowers the stress hormones and sends signals to your brain and body that you are safe. Studies have proved tapping to minimize depression, post-traumatic stress disorder, pain, anxiety, daily stress, and cravings. In fact, one hour of tapping reduced stress hormones by 43%, according to a 2020 study reporting that people feel lighter, calmer, and more at peace after tapping.
How to tap
It’s actually quite a simple process: decide what issue to tap on and tap through the points. When deciding on what to focus, think on what is bothering you: fear, anger, panic, stress, sadness, grief. Then use a scale of 0-10 and rate it’s intensity, with 10 being the highest. Next, use any two fingers, apart from the thumb, to tap through the points, while stating your affirmations. You’ll want to tap at least five times.
- Top of the head
- Eyebrow (where your eyebrow begins)
- Side of temple
- Under the eye (on top of the cheekbone)
- Under the nose (just above the upper lip)
- Chin (indentation between the chin and bottom lip)
- Underneath the arm (right where a bra strap would hit)
An example of an affirmation you could say out loud is: “Even though I have or am feeling (state situation), I deeply and comply choose to love and accept myself.” It works best if a statement is repeated a couple times to fully be manifested.
To be clear, tapping is not the be-all-cure-all method to alleviating stress, but instead an alternative option to managing your issues. Give it a try and let us know.
Still stressed? Try one of these non-alcoholic drinks that are aimed at reducing stress.
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