Please Note: Winter Blooms is an educational website only and is in no way meant to replace experience with a trained EFT practitioner, counselor, or therapist. To find an EFT Practitioner, visit the AAMET website, the EFT Universe website, the Tapping Solution website, or contact Jane at 802-533-9277 or firstname.lastname@example.org for EFT coaching support.
Failure can be a wonderful teacher, especially when we tap without seeming to shift specific issues. Failure prompts us to think and intuit outside our usual patterns of cause and effect. One of my favourite phrases when tapping on a particularly stubborn issue is “If I need to fail at understanding and resolving this challenge now, what are failure’s gifts?” Seeing failure as a gift giver is a positive reframe that prompts us to look for the hidden benefits – what Gary Craig has called the Secondary Gains – in what appear to be negative situations. We may be close to understanding something that requires special emotional support and the time provided by apparent failure allows for that support to materialize in our lives. When our tapping failures are seen in this way, EFT becomes a process rather than a product, a journey rather than a destination; it takes the pressure off our problem solving efforts and brings into our awareness helpful forces beyond our control that support our intention to live authentically and with love.
Examples of stubborn issues can be found in our interpersonal relationships. At home and at work these can become strained or volatile so suddenly that we are tempted to respond with anger and frustration because we may feel ambushed. Subtly tapping on or holding finger points in the midst of tense conversations can regulate our breathing and re-establish the much needed goodwill to work through conflict to restore understanding and a sense of optimism regarding how to proceed with kindness and respect. The “Art” of tapping means there is no one way to use it. We can tap, massage, or simply hold a specific point while holding the intention to remain tender and open to the issue that has come up.
Recently, I had the opportunity to explore my personal feelings of fear, anger, and failure when I learned that physical violence had occurred quite close to my work place. My feelings were compounded when I learned the perpetrator was still at large. We had recently gone through lock-down procedure training and so everyone on site was edgy and somewhat distracted. Unconsciously at first, and then consciously, I held the tip of my baby finger while listening to people express their fear and regret about the situation.
The outside of the baby finger tip is the beginning of small intestine meridian; the inside of the baby finger tip is the end point of heart meridian. Since I’ve been working on my meridians in one way or another for many years, my unconscious response to the stress caused by our fear of violence so close to our workplace was to soothe my heart and my gut as I listened to the panic and fear in people’s voices. As I did, I felt a huge weight shift: we, as small communities within a vast culture, are coming to a crossroads regarding the violence playing out in our everyday lives. Each incident such as the one we were hearing about invokes a sense of failure even as it inches us closer to community solutions to our numerous social injustice challenges.
In describing this recent situation, I am reminding myself that failure comes in many forms. I might have been knocked off centre for days had I not calmed myself with the simple, subtle action of holding my baby finger. I received no big answers to the causes of violence in our community and continue to explore with others how to address the poverty and lack of support for people held fast by addiction and hopelessness. What EFT gave me that day and continues to provide is personal experience with this energy tool’s power to shift perspective and calm the Fight, Flight, and Freeze response that comes with sudden conflict. The larger social issues remain to be addressed by all of us – these are our collective failures – but the opportunities for positive personal participation in conflict situations are all around us.
A sense of failure in the face of violence can motivate us to ask “How can I participate in resolving the violence in our community?” The answer may not come immediately, but with daily tapping, a way forward will become clear. The insights we receive when we tap, and the comfort, inspire us to find new ways to share in the creation of a socially just culture woven together by networks of fully present, optimistic human beings. Tapping is an indispensable tool to help us remain present and positive, regardless of the failures we must live through.
Until next week
Jane Buchan, MA, AAMET Advanced Practitioner, email@example.com, 802-533-9277