Using EFT to help us make friends with our Shadow and find our Light
When I was growing up. I learned that being ‘wasteful’, particularly with food was ‘bad’, and being ‘extravagant’ was frowned upon. My parents had been brought up during the second world war when food was very scarce and in my family home no food (no matter how horrible!) was ever wasted, even though we were financially abundant.
It took me until my early 20’s to be able to leave even the smallest amount of food on a plate (even if I was really full), and all left overs must be saved and used, even if they were unpalatable. I can remember my father (who wasn’t overweight at all) on many occasions eating leftovers when he clearly wasn’t hungry as he just couldn’t bear to see food wasted.
After realising and processing this behaviour using EFT I saw how I had shut down the part of me that listened to my actual food needs and tastes, and also the part of me that enjoyed being extravagant and luxuriating and giving myself the gift of high quality, or expensive food.
Next, pick one of the qualities or behaviours from part 1 of this post that you don’t like and ask yourself the questions listed below.
Answering these questions help you identify key emotional events from your past where you learned to ‘hide’ or disown parts of yourself.
- Who do I know that behaved like this? Look back in time to your family of origin or close friends/care givers growing up for clues.
- How or when did I learn that I am ‘not’ that (angry, pessimistic, lazy etc) or that I ‘should be’ something else (calm, optimistic, workaholic). Who taught you that behaviour was okay/not okay?
- At what point in my past did I learn that behaving like this was ‘wrong’? Maybe it was a certain incident, or an accumulation of small events. Or maybe, like me, with wasting food, it was just how it was in your home.
After coming to terms with these parts within me about food, I continue to try not to waste food needlessly, however, I endeavour to listen to my body and eat what is good and healthy until I am naturally full, rather than thoughtlessly eating what is left over for the sake of ‘never wasting’. I also thoroughly enjoy the gift of delicious, good quality food without guilt!
So, if you have resistance to coming to terms with our hidden parts, or you find this work challenging, how do we help ourselves process this information? If you aren’t already aware of EFT (or tapping as its commonly known) this is one way that you can help yourself process the shadow.
Thankfully, when I discovered EFT I started to experience gentle, cumulative inner change….that has lasted.
How does EFT work?
EFT is based on the premise that all negative emotions are the result of a disruption in the body/mind energy system. If this energy is blocked it can have a negative impact on the body or mind.
Einstein said everything is energy. Its just taken us a while to realise that this means people too!
During an EFT session we can release emotional blocks by tuning into a specific issue we want to change (eg anger, grief, procrastination) and stimulate key meridian points in the face and body by tapping or holding them with our fingertips. This is similar to what an acupuncturist would do, but instead of needles, we use touch and talk.
Doing this sends pulses of energy back through the system and calms the stress centres of the brain.
In EFT we don’t push away or ignore our negative emotions (the shadow) we acknowledge and accept where we are in the moment. By doing so we give ourselves a safe and gentle opportunity to release old pain and resentments and move on.
It is that simple. I use it every day on myself and with my clients. A daily tap only takes a few minutes and the more you use it the easier it is.
Note: While EFT seems to have supported remarkable changes in many emotional and physical issues to date, it should not be used instead of appropriate medical care. You should always consult your doctor before using any form of self-treatment.