Many EFT practitioners are familiar with the lack of trust that can occur in someone toward a specific other– a relative, friend, partner etc. Often we see people tap successfully for this kind of distrust and greatly improve their relationships. However, this is not the kind of trust discussed in this article.
The Role that a General Lack of Trust Plays in Anxiety
I am increasingly impressed with the central role that a lack of trust, in GENERAL, in what we might call the Universe –– that is in life itself, may play in many anxiety states. This lack of trust involves a feeling of non-support, of being alone against overwhelming odds. I do not mean an irrational suspiciousness, as in paranoia, but a basic, all pervading feeling that somehow situations won’t work out, that the worst will happen, and that what may look like a good outcome is not what it seems –– it is not to be TRUSTED. This kind of distrust of life itself is actually quite common, and EFT can effectively address it.
Let me give you an example:
“Pamela” consulted me for a fear she had that was hard to explain. She had some health issues that were challenging her and were certainly worthy of concern, but these were gradually improving with medical treatment coupled with EFT. Why then did she so often feel as though “the rug is being pulled out from under me.”
She had come to my office in a semi-panic. She was not so anxious that she was unable to function, but she was staving off what she described as a “sense of dread” that had to do with a feeling of being doomed and trapped, of having something “terrible” happen to her that was totally inescapable.
In formulating an EFT statement to tap on during the session, she discovered that the issue of trust was paramount for her and seemed to underlie all her other fears. Here is the statement she devised for this:
“Even though I don’t believe that things can really be getting better for me, I choose to trust that they really are.” Tapping on this “Choices” statement brought some interesting insights to Pamela.
She realized that, in fact, her financial circumstances were improving markedly at that time and that certain aspects of her health were improving as well. Like any road to recovery, however, there were days when things seemed to worsen again, and other days when they seemed clearly better than before. It was her inability to trust her “good” moments, coupled with an all too ready ability to thoroughly believe in the “bad” moments (her set-backs) that were creating her intense anxiety.
She pursued this further.
“Even though I can’t believe that the set-backs aren’t the real truth, and the progress an illusion, I choose to TRUST.”
This statement was difficult for Pamela and it was also a revelation to her. She realized for the first time that she was going to have to TRUST in her physical healing, regardless of moment-to-moment “evidence,” otherwise she would be overwhelmed with anxiety and discouragement. Only by trusting, could she cease to become like a yo-yo, bouncing back and forth between short-lived encouragement and despair.
Her next EFT statement was:
“Even though things seem to be getting worse today, I choose to remember the good moments I am experiencing.”
After tapping on this issue for several rounds of the “Choices Trio” (see description of this strategy in Chapter 3 of my Choices Manual), Pamela announced that she suspected that her negative convictions were a distortion of the truth, but they still had a strong hold on her. So she formulated another Choice:
“Even though I can’t seem to let go of the negative, I choose to be keenly aware of the good that is happening to me right now.”
After tapping on this, Pamela suddenly realized that her negative thoughts and fears had been acting almost as a “smokescreen,” obscuring some very good things that were also happening to her in terms of her relationships, her career, and her health. Additionally, in many ways, she was handling her health issues much more responsibly than she had done before. She then spontaneously reframed the entire situation by saying, “This increase in (certain) symptoms is serving me by making me responsible for my health in a way I’ve never been before.” This made her suddenly grateful for the increase in certain symptoms; they were actually serving her!
Since that therapy session, Pamela continued to tap on these issues using these statements and they in effect, turned her previous panic into an awareness of a new maturity and responsibility to herself.
The lesson for all of us in this, I think, is that lack of TRUST can be an excellent starting point for EFT that may lead to the uncovering of some important dynamics –– and their correction. Step-by-step, this issue of trust led Pamela to uncover the real meaning of her negative thoughts and it prepared her for yet another step forward in her personal development.
If you are stuck at a certain point when doing EFT and unable to pull yourself out of a negative state, you may well want to experiment with the TRUST issue, tap on it, and see what happens!
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