Janette, a mother of three teens, had been overweight for years when she came to my EFT tapping class called ‘Eliminate Emotional Overeating’. EFT (Emotional Freedom Techniques) is an easy self-help acupressure technique that is — right now — relieving a lot of stress and suffering around the world.
Stress emotions are the drivers of emotional overeating. The course not only clarifies this reality, but also gives participants quick and easy techniques to start eliminating their stresses, so that they no longer need to reach for food to calm themselves without even realising what they are doing.
When I asked Janette how long she had been overweight, she said, ‘Since somewhere among my four childbirths.’ ‘Four?’ I said ‘What happened with the fourth?’ Janette burst into tears.
Here was a perfect opportunity to demonstrate how quickly and gently EFT tapping can relieve stress emotions, permanently, whether these are new or long-held.
We needed no words as I guided Janette to repeat the 30-second EFT technique where we fingertap on key acupressure points while we briefly focus on a specific problem. Janette’s tears demonstrated that she was already focussed on her problem of baby loss grief. After a few rounds of silent EFT tapping for overwhelm she calmed down.
She whispered, ‘That baby was born dead.’
While her classmates supported her, during 20 minutes of tapping Janette bravely faced this unresolved trauma in her life, the loss of her infant son 16 years ago. The fact that she could still feel overwhelmed by the memories and the loss proved that she had been carrying this big load of stress all that time.
Ashamed of her long-held grief
Janette explained that she had had to hide the extent of her continuing grief because people close to her felt she ‘should have got over the worst of it by now’. She was even feeling ashamed that 16 years later, while she competently managed her daily life and her family’s needs, she was still suffering from the whole experience of giving birth to a dead baby.
‘Other people get over it and move on,’ she complained. I said, ‘How do you know?’
We spent about 20 minutes tapping to relieve various aspects of this problem: learning the baby was dead, facing that the childbirth must happen anyway, going through the physical experience, never seeing the dead baby, mourning his loss with her family… and all the lingering aftermath of distress she could not explain.
Janette looked progressively brighter as she shed one stress feeling after another, and the trauma faded away.
At the end of the demonstration she sighed with immense relief. She said to the class, ‘Since then, I’ve never been able to say the word ‘stillbirth’. And I just said it, and I’m fine.’
Thanks to this new and fast de-stressing method, Janette had gently lost one of the drivers that had often forced her to reach for extra food , not knowing why. She was also learning to eliminate other stress drivers from her daily life.
When the cause of a problem no longer exists, neither do the symptoms – whether the symptoms are baby loss grief or overweight. Is there folk wisdom in the saying, ‘What a load off your chest (or your back) !’…