How to do EFT Tapping Therapy – EFT Tutorial
How To Do the EFT Basic Recipe - EFT in a Nutshell
This article is part 1 of a 2-part tutorial describing
the EFT tapping process. It starts with a brief
introduction to the theory of how EFT works followed by
the EFT Basic Recipe.
At the end of this article, the EFT tutorial continues
with a link to another article called "Picking Effective
EFT Tapping Phrases." These two articles combined will
give you a good foundation to start doing your own
Note: Scroll down this page to find an EFT
Tapping Points Chart.
How EFT Tapping Therapy Works
EFT is based on the following fundamental premise:
"The cause of all
negative emotions and beliefs is a disturbance in our
body's energy system."
Disturbances in the Body's Energy System
The energy system referred to above is the same energy
system that is used in acupuncture. Acupuncture talks
about there being 14 energy pathways in our bodies called
energy meridians. All of our negative emotions,
like anxiety, hurt, anger, shame and so on, are due to a
disturbance in one or more of these energy meridians.
These energy disturbances are linked to memories of
painful events. It is not the memory itself that is
painful. Rather, when we think of the memory, the
associated energy disturbance gets activated, which then
causes the negative, painful emotions.
EFT Works by Clearing the Energy Disturbances
EFT works by intentionally activating an energy
disturbance by thinking about a painful memory or just
feeling your feelings. While the energy disturbance is
activated, you tap with your fingertips on a set of 10
easily learned acupuncture points in order to clear out
the energy disturbance in the affected meridians. As the
disturbance gets cleared through the tapping, you will
experience your negative emotions actually drain away.
When the energy disturbance has been completely cleared,
your negative emotions will be gone. You can then think
about the memory with no painful emotional reaction!
Problems in your life that resulted from the original
experience will clear up as well.
It's Important to Stay Focused on the Problem While
It is essential that the energy disturbance remains
activated the whole time you are tapping in order to
completely clear it. Therefore, you have to keep your
attention focused on the negative feelings while tapping
until they are gone. Getting distracted or thinking about
two things at once can interfere with EFT working.
The EFT Tapping Procedure
Now that we have a basic understanding of how EFT works,
we can learn how to do the actual tapping procedure.
EFT Tapping Points Diagram
(Copyright © 2008 All
Rights Reserved - Do not copy.)
The Ten EFT Tapping Points
This diagram shows you the 10 points that we will use to
clear all energy disturbances with EFT. The ten points
address all 14 meridians due to the fact that some of the
points are located at the intersection of two meridians.
Since we are tapping on all meridians when we do EFT, we
don't have to worry about which meridians have the
disturbance in them. We are tapping on all of the
See the tapping points diagram. The names of the points
starting at the top of the head and going down the body
&nbull; top of head &nbull; beginning of
eyebrow &nbull; side of eye &nbull; under eye
&nbull; under nose &nbull; chin &nbull; collar bone &nbull; under arm &nbull; inside
&nbull; karate chop
How to Tap on the Points
- Top of head:
Use all your fingers to "pat" the top of your head so
that you don't have to worry about the exact location of
- All the facial
Use two fingers on each point for the same reason.
- Collar bone point:
The collar bone points are located just below the
"knobs" at the end of each collar bone. Use a flat fist
just below your neck, where a man would knot his tie, to
get one or both of the collar bone points.
- Under arm point:
This point in located on the side of your body a few
inches below your armpit. On a man it is level with the
nipple. On a woman it is located in the middle of her
bra band. Use all four fingers running up and down on
the side of your body to tap on this point.
- Inside Wrist point:
Notice the crease between your wrist and your hand on
the inside of your wrist. The wrist point is located
three finger widths below the crease. Use your whole
hand to pat this point.
- Karate chop point:
The last point on the pinky side of your hand is called
the "karate chop" point because it is the place on your
hand you would hit if you did a karate chop. You can tap
this point any way that you like.
Note: For the points that are located on both sides of
your body, it does not matter which side you use. It's
also okay to switch sides while tapping or use both sides
simultaneously. It will work any way that you do it. EFT
is very forgiving that way.
The tapping on each point should be rapid little
"thunks." I say little thunks because you should tap hard
enough to feel some percussion during each tap but not
hard enough that you will begin to feel tender after a lot
of tapping. You only need to tap each point around 4 to 6
times, though more is not a problem. You won't need to
count taps because you will be saying a phrase at each
point (see below). Just tap rapidly while saying the
phrase, and that will be enough taps.
The EFT Tapping Procedure —
The "EFT Basic Recipe"
- Select the problem
that you would like to address with EFT
Most of our current emotional problems are due to
painful experiences we had growing up. Therefore, the
most effective way to really heal current problems in
your life is to apply EFT to the painful memories that
are the source of those problems. In addition, it is
also possible to apply EFT to relieve in-the-moment
difficult emotions (e.g., anxiety, anger, sadness), food
and substance cravings, physical pain in the body and
many other problems.
- The EFT "Reminder
Come up with a short phrase used to refer to the memory
or problem, the more specific the better. We call this
the "reminder" phrase because we will use it during the
tapping process to stay focused on the memory or current
problem. The way to create a reminder phrase for a
memory is to give the memory a title, like the title of
a movie. (For more information on creating effective
reminder phrases, see the last sections, Picking
Good Reminder Tapping Phrases and Using EFT to
Heal Painful Memories, at the bottom of this
a. My best friend moved away and I was alone (title of
b. I'm afraid of flying.
c. I have a buring pain in my left shoulder.
d. I'm craving ice cream.
e. I'm furious at Jan for going behind my back.
- Rate the Pain or
Assess on a 0 to 10 scale how painful the memory is or
how intense the emotion or pain is, where 0 is no
intensity at all and 10 is the maximum intensity you can
imagine. It is not important that this number be totally
accurate. It will only be used to generally track our
progress, so don't worry about being exact.
- Perform the Set-up
You do the set-up affirmation by saying a
self-acceptance affirmation three times while tapping on
the karate chop point. The self-acceptance affirmation
has the following form:
"Even though ______________, I deeply and profoundly
The blank is filled in with the reminder phrase that you
came up with in step 2.
For example: "Even though I'm craving ice cream, I
deeply and profoundly accept myself."
- The EFT Tapping
Perform two passes through all ten points:
Say the reminder phrase while quickly tapping on each
point. You will say the reminder phrase once per point.
This is just the reminder phrase without the "even
though" and "I deeply and profoundly accept myself."
It is important to stay focused on the memory or
feelings while tapping on all of the points. When you
have done all ten points, you have completed one pass
through the points. Repeat this for a second pass.
The combination of the Set-up Affirmation and two passes
through all of the points is considered the EFT Basic
- Reassess the
Reassess the pain level of the memory on a scale of 0 to
10. If the tapping is working, your pain level should
come down around 1 - 3 points per basic recipe. It may
come down even more.
- Perform Another EFT
Basic Recipe Until Done
Repeat steps 4 through 6 to apply another EFT basic
recipe to the memory or painful emotions. However, if
your pain level came down at all, then we change the
wording of the set-up affirmation and reminder phrase a
little bit to acknowledge the progress that has been
The set-up affirmation becomes:
"Even though I still
have some _____________, I deeply and
completely accept myself."
The reminder phrase becomes:
You keep applying the EFT Basic Recipe to your painful
memory or emotions until the pain level, including all of
the associated emotions, goes down to zero. At this point,
that memory will be completely healed or your in the
moment emotions relieved.
Using this minimal version of EFT, you will tend have a
40 - 50% success rate. There is more to learn about EFT in
order to get much better success rates (mine is over 97%
at this time). If the tapping process doesn't work for you
after several tries, please read my article,
to Do When EFT Doesn't Seem To Work, which
can help you get better results.
Where can you go from here?
If you would
like tips on how to use EFT, sign up for my Tapping Tips
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sweet newsletters with practical, easy-to-digest ways to
use EFT to enhance your life.
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How to Pick Effective EFT Tapping Phrases
(What to say while tapping)
When first learning EFT, one of the most common questions
is "what words do I use for the reminder (problem)
phrase"? I know that this was confusing for me when I was
I have written a separate article for understanding how
to come up with good phrases to use for tapping that you
can read here:
How to Pick Effective EFT Tapping Phrases
I also created a video explaining how to pick effective
EFT tapping phrases:
How to Pick Effective EFT Tapping Phrases
Using EFT to Heal Painful
How to Heal Painful Memories with EFT Tapping
EFT is most effective when applied to memories of
specific events in your life. These early memories are the
root causes of our current day problems. The memory should
be a short specific event whose duration is measured in
The method first taught for working with a memory is to
give it a title, like a title of a movie. The title should
include what was upsetting about the memory.
For example, let's say that your father yelled at you
when you were crying with the classic "stop crying or I'll
give you something to really cry about!" line.
One possible title for this memory could be "Daddy
yelled at me for crying." This will probably work well if
you are in touch with the painful feelings associated with
that memory. However, there is an approach that I find
even more effective.
Often, painful memories include some key sentence spoken
by the parent, like in the example above. The sentence
with the parent's tone of voice and facial expression will
usually capture what is most painful about the memory.
Unless the memory is already on the verge of being too
painful, it is often helpful to get in touch with what is
most painful about it so as to more thoroughly heal the
In this case, I usually have my clients use the parent's
actual sentence as the tapping phrase. I will have my
clients say the phrase as if they were their parent and
encourage them to use the same facial expression and tone
"Even though 'stop crying or
I'll give you something to really cry about', I deeply and
completely love and accept myself."
You would then repeat
"stop crying or I'll give you
something to really cry about"
at each tapping point with the parent's tone of voice and
facial expression. This is a powerful way to more fully
access one's feelings while tapping and will result in a
deeper healing experience.
More Helpful Resources
I have two resources to help you learn more about EFT
These resources include a wide range of practical tips
for making the best use of EFT in your life.