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Emotional Freedom Techniques

EFT Tapping is like emotional acupressure. Using tapping to stimulate acupuncture meridians we can “short-circuit” emotional blocks, restoring the mind-body balance that supports the body in healing itself.  It works on a variety of stress related, physical and performance issues.

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Multiple Physical Symptoms Resolve by Collapsing Underlying Emotions: A Case Study

Dear Readers,

This case study by Dale Teplitz exemplifies how effectively EFT can resolve physical symptoms when it is only applied to the underlying emotional issues.


Joan is a 62 year old, wife and mother. When we had our first EFT phone session, she had a two month long history of irregular heartbeat, stomach pain, nausea, IBS (irritable bowel), dizziness, blood sugar imbalances, and severe insomnia. Before we began our work together, medical doctors ruled out physical causes for the symptoms. Joan tried anti-anxiety medications and changes in diet and nutritional supplementation, with no relief.

After a history was taken, Joan was asked the following questions to begin to identify what emotional issues to address:

a. What happened in your life around the time these physical symptoms began?

The client reported the physical symptoms began the night her adult daughter (her last child living at home) left home to move to another country, and several years after the death of her mother. Until Joan was asked this question, she never identified the connection between her daughter’s leaving and the start of the physical symptoms. During the same time period she was also faced with an upcoming move to another state, requiring her to reluctantly leave the home and community where she raised her family for over 20 years.

b. If you knew why your symptoms are there, what would the answer be?

The client explained that she missed her mother and daughter and felt desperately alone. She didn’t know how to deal with so much loss.

c. If you got over these physical symptoms, how would your life change?

The client’s answers to this question helped to:

Identify psychological reversals and secondary benefits which may be contributing to physical symptoms: “I might have to accept being alone.  I don’t know what I would do with my life if I had to face it without my mother and daughter.”

Identify core issues to be addressed with EFT. “What is my life purpose if not to take care of others?

Protocol used in each of Joan’s EFT sessions:

a. Identify and address her emotionally reactive state:

In each session the client was asked to describe her current negative emotions (fear, sadness, etc.) and the physical sensations associated with them, (pressure in my chest, lump in my throat, etc). EFT was applied for the bodily sensations of the emotions until the intensity was relieved.

b. Current life stressors:

In each session the client was asked to describe specific non-traumatic events coming up in her present life; frustrations about not being able to sleep, concerns about giving notice at work or preparing the house to sell.  EFT was used to address and collapse emotional intensity around many aspects of those events.

c. Addressing core issues:

Discussions during each session further defined core issues, such as;“Who will I take care of now that they are gone?”, and “I feel guilty about how I wasn’t there for them.” EFT was used to address each core issue as it became apparent.

d. Use of gentle EFT for unresolved traumas

It was apparent to me that Joan was easily triggered with intense emotions when focusing on loss issues such as the ‘loss’ of her daughter and the death of her mother and father, leaving her community, her brother’s suicide and her gravely ill pet.

Rather than focusing EFT directly on traumatic events, and childhood memories that were elicited in the course of the session, gentle EFT techniques including the Tearless Trauma Technique, were used to ‘sneak up on the problem’. This included applying EFT for events leading up to the losses and for broader, less specific events to take the charge off before addressing specific traumatic memories. Once intensity levels (SUDS) were low using the gentle techniques, specific traumatic events were addressed and collapsed with EFT.

e. Using Energy Medicine techniques for additional energy balancing:

To help ensure her energy system remained balanced between sessions, Joan was provided with instructions for a daily 5 minute energy routine (Eden, D., 2008) which she did each day throughout the 3 months we worked together.


Though the physical symptoms were never addressed in our 10 EFT sessions, Joan reported complete relief of all her physical symptoms including; irregular heartbeat, stomach pain, nausea, IBS, dizziness, blood sugar imbalances and severe insomnia.

She also reported feeling more positive, less anxious and less fearful of change gradually over the course of our weekly sessions and describes the outcome of our EFT work together as amazing!  Joan continues to tap on her own when new stresses or negative emotions show up  in her life.


This case is a great example of finding and collapsing core issues which often underlie physical symptoms. If our EFT sessions were focused on the physical symptoms alone, the outcome might not have been nearly as successful.

Dale Paula Teplitz


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Dale is featured in the award winning documentary on EFT for war trauma.

In 2008, eleven military veterans or family members, all with PTSD, participated in a pilot program where each received EFT for 5 days. This pilot program is the centerpiece of OPERATION: Emotional Freedom, a full-length documentary.

 See Operation Emotional Freedom Website here.