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.
Sometimes we are faced with challenging situations at home, at social events, and at work, that require we leave our comfort zone to speak an unpopular truth. Situations in which our values are challenged run the gamut from personal agonies over telling a friend the truth of our feelings regarding a specific situation to addressing a nursing home situation to protect the health and well being of residents and their family members. These situations require deep soul searching, loving kindness, and moral courage. Tapping can help us to make more informed, emotionally intelligent decisions regarding how to speak our truth in family, social, or workplace situations that trouble us.
Most of us feel pangs of conscience regarding unfair treatment of self and others fairly regularly. We might find ourselves asking, “Do I say something to my son’s friend’s mom regarding my suspicions of an eating disorder? If I do, how do I approach this with love?” Even closer to home we might find ourselves anticipating a conversation with our significant other regarding sexist remarks indulged in by a group of friends watching television in our family room. The approach we take can make the difference between a defensive response that ends in denial and accusations of over-sensitivity or an authentic conversation exploring sexism and its long and sticky fingers.
Another example from one of my workplace experiences involves racial insensitivity when teaching specific forms of literature. Teaching Huck Finn, To Kill a Mocking Bird, and The Merchant of Venice can fuel explosive situations in which habitual prejudice is more deeply entrenched than ever. How do we talk to students, colleagues, and parents about the dangerous fallout from insensitive handling of sensitive materials. As a writer and teacher of literature, I believe the answer is never to ban books, but to read them with an awareness of the times in which they were written. The authors are saying “this is how things are” in these imagined worlds, not “this is how things should be.” Once we understand that art reflects both the time of its creation and the universal vagaries of the human heart, we can explore its worlds with insight and compassion rather than fear and prejudice.
Policing issues bring more than their share of opportunities for truth speaking these days. One such example is found in the aftermath of Michael Brown’s death in Ferguson, Missouri. Lest we think becoming an activist on the side of truth is an easy, straightforward path that leads to the rewards of public harmony and justice, we need only look at our history of coverups and denials in the face of overwhelming evidence of wrongdoing. The systemic racism in our country, the increasing law enforcement militarization, and the growing frustration of ordinary citizens have created countless opportunities to become involved in the quest for social and economic justice by speaking out.
Political and corporate wrongdoing also requires we speak our truth. Wiki-leaks creator Julian Assange and NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden illustrate the terrorizing establishment forces that come after people who dare to expose secret, harmful government and corporate activities. Perhaps the most memorable corporate whistle blower, Jeffrey Wigand, continues to work for a smoke free world in spite of big tobacco’s early ruthless tactics to silence him.
One truth speaking story from the eighties and nineties is given new exposure in a film released this weekend. Kill the Messenger tells the story of investigative journalist Gary Webb who described CIA complicity in the spread of crack-cocaine in US inner cities. Webb’s Contra/crack/CIA research took him into what he called the “Dark Alliance” between drug dealers funding the Contras and CIA operatives who turned a blind eye to their activities. So explosive was the information he uncovered that The New York Times, The Washington Post, and The Los Angeles Times did their best to discredit his work, not wanting to believe that a reporter from a lesser known paper could break such an important story.
Initially supported by the paper he worked for, the San Jose Mercury News, criticism from the big three news bullies prompted Webb’s bosses to drown him in journalism’s backwaters. Disheartened by other journalists determined to discredit his research, Webb resigned. Tragically, even though the CIA Inspector General vindicated Webb’s CIA stories (in fact, the public learned from the Inspector General’s report that CIA involvement was even greater than Webb reported), Webb’s sense of betrayal by members of the profession he loved grew, and it is believed that he died by his own hand in 2004. His despair at being discredited by his own colleagues demonstrates how very isolating speaking the truth can be.
When we make the decision to speak out in a small way or to take a stand in a more public way in order to advocate for a person or shed light on a situation, we risk attracting the outrage of the people or groups whose activities we are highlighting. In politically charged situations such as Webb’s “dark alliance” research unearthed, consequential push-back energies are inevitable. Most of us will never be in the terrifying situation Gary Webb’s truth speaking caused, but we may have to endure the hostility of friends and colleagues who resent our disturbing the status quo by speaking out against injustice. When this happens, tapping can help us to broaden our perspective, invite in positive energies to ameliorate the situation, and bless those whose initial responses may be more resentful and ego-based than reasonable.
Tapping on highly charged situations caused by speaking our truth creates space for understanding and, hopefully, a deeper connection to justice. When we speak our truth with love, gentleness, and curiosity rather than judgment, hostility, and fear, we are more likely to find our way through the darkest times. After all, tapping is all about emotional freedom and the most important emotional freedom is the ability to speak our truth.
Until next week
Jane Buchan, MA, AAMET Advanced Practitioner, email@example.com, 802-533-9277