Because Emotional Freedom Techniques (EFT tapping) can quickly neutralise shock, horror and fear without needing equipment, it is not only a practical way to help stabilise people quickly in the aftermath of disaster, but also its leading-edge, gentle, and accessible methods play a large part in avoiding Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder for many survivors.
One of EFT’s unique features is that lay people — even children — can use tapping themselves, to calm levels of upset. and apply it to many more of life’s difficulties. Some aidworkers have taught the basic technique in schools, for example in Indonesia after earthquake.
Even though complex problems need the help of a qualified EFT practitioner, much can be accomplished with little training in this cutting-edge healing aid.
EFT is a leader in the new healing field of Energy Psychology.
An EFT research report authored by David Feinstein Ph.D. describes Energy Psychology this way: ‘Energy psychology utilises cognitive operations such as imaginal exposure to traumatic memories, or visualisation of optimal performance scenarios—combined with physical interventions derived from acupuncture, yoga, and related systems—for inducing psychological change
‘While a controversial approach’ (EFT is a relatively new modality, since acknowledged as evidence-based by the American Psychological Association ) ‘this combination purportedly brings about, with unusual speed and precision, therapeutic shifts in affective, cognitive, and behavioural patterns that underlie a range of psychological concerns.’
EFT-trained aidworkers have applied Energy Psychology in the wake of natural and human-made disasters in the Congo, Guatemala, Indonesia, Kenya, Kosovo, Kuwait, Mexico, Moldavia, Nairobi, Rwanda, South Africa, Tanzania, Israel, Haiti, Thailand and the U.S, as well as in traumatised indigenous communities in Australia.
Orphan genocide survivors
A major project in Rwanda has used EFT tapping to de-traumatise orphan survivors of genocide from the war there 20 years ago, and also teaches leadership and entrepreneurship to them so they can contribute to their country’s welfare.
EFT Global: A new humanitarian branch of EFT called EFT Global is also taking this simple technique around the world, as humanitarian aid for troubled areas. Its first task was to send a team to teach EFT to health professionals and social workers in Mexico over 5 days.
As well as providing practitioner help for individuals, its EFT professionals train practitioners in specialised trauma work for disaster event followup. In recent years they have worked in the U.S. with communities traumatised by school shootings. .
In its multi-task approach, the first tier of EFT assistance is most pertinent in psychological first aid immediately following a disaster. Subsequent tiers are progressively introduced over time, with complex stress reactions and chronic disorders.
Tapping with bomb and massacre victims in Israel
Rabbi Immanuel Yosef is a trainer in Matrix Reimprinting with EFT. This is an adaptation of EFT, a technique utilising both meridian tapping and visualisation. These two methods are significantly fast relievers of trauma and stress.
The Rabbi established a trauma recovery program. In two visits his team of 5 Matrix Reimprinting trainers from Israel and the U.K. carried out EFT tapping work with both people who had been bombed and lost their homes and loved ones recently and others who had suffered PTSD symptoms from war trauma occurring years before.
In the city of Tzfat the team focussed first on local victims of a massacre that occurred in 1974. Most of the survivors, now in their fifties, had had zero treatment for trauma and stress relief. They suffered massive survivor guilt, and still carried terror symptoms..
The massacre had occurred to a group of 115 children from Tzfat, on a school weekend outing. They were asleep in a school when a group of terrorists disguised as soldiers armed with weapons and hand grenades burst in and woke them up at 3am, and tortured them for 12 hours. Finally the terrorists blasted the room with automatic gunfire and grenades, killing 18 girls and 4 boys and wounding 68 others.
The EFT team also worked with victims of the 2008 Lebanon Missile War. By then more than 500 missiles had exploded in their city.
The Rabbi speaks about his peacemaking work on Youtube: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8oRu55x9mEmm
Haiti: Traumatised child speaks
A small girl who had not spoken for a year after she went through Haiti’s massive 2010 earthquake told her story after she experienced EFT tapping. She told of how she had seen her mother crushed and killed by building rubble during the quake.Her trauma symptoms vanished.
French EFT practitioner Jean-Michel Gurret was invited to work with quake survivors in Haiti, and he made a video of this (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=n4SkXvDVjRQ). The quake killed 250,000 people and injured many more.
Jean-Michel found hundreds of orphans who were still traumatised a year afterwards. In successfully teaching tapping to individuals and groups, he noted high levels of post-traumatic stress, particularly the trauma symptoms of grief and survivor guilt, as well as horrifying memories. Some of the individuals he tapped with had been trapped in rubble – one man for days .
Jean-Michel also used tapping to help the injured relieve pain : amputees suffering phantom limb pain, and others whose pain medication was not working (yet tapping did work).
Testing before and after three group tapping sessions revealed that participants’ levels of post-traumatic stress had declined by 60%.
EFT tapping is ideal for use in disaster areas because:
* it is easy to learn
* often gets results quickly
* needs no drugs or equipment
* and stays with recipients for personal use to reduce or eliminate other trauma symptoms and pain.
EFT humanitarian organisations train volunteers in specialised EFT trauma work to go into traumatised communities, help victims, and train local people to continue teaching EFT skills.
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