Margaret assists people to go free from the fears, phobias, negative emotions, health problems, trauma and relationship issues that stop them from feeling good about themselves.
She is the author of the books ‘The Power of Tapping’ and ‘Create Prosperity’.
Q. How do you explain EFT to someone who has not discovered the technique previously?
A. Our bodies are electrical systems and while we might not always be aware of it many people might be familiar with having the electrical impulses of their heart measured by an electrocardiograph. The energy channels in our body can be disrupted through the many things that cause us stress – problematic childhoods, financial worries, illness, accidents, exposure to trauma or violence, unemployment or career difficulties, conflict in relationships, the death of a loved one and so on. EFT is a very simple way of bringing our energy system back into balance and releasing the mental, emotional and physical symptoms of stress.
Q. The use of the meridians in EFT would seem similar to Acupressure? Do the two share much in philosophy and practice?
A. Yes, acupressure, acupuncture and EFT all use the energy channels called meridians which were first documented by the Chinese over 4,000 years ago. EFT uses a light tapping with the fingers on the body at specific points and adds a psychological component, using the mind to focus on a particular issue.
Q. You are the author of two books based around EFT; ‘The Power of Tapping’ and ‘Create Prosperity’. What path led you to value the tools of EFT and wanting to share this technique with others?
A. I was a naturopath for many years and being on my own healing journey had experienced and studied a great many other healing modalities both in Australia and overseas. I was really seeking something which was gentle AND fast-acting AND cleared issues on a deep level AND didn’t have untoward side effects AND that people could use themselves AND that was available to everyone. In other words, something that really produced results! I knew the moment I had my first experience of EFT that I had found what I was looking for. That was 10 years ago and I am still passionate and enchanted by it. I really believe the world would be a much better place if everyone knew how to tap and I also believe it is one of the simplest most readily available, most comprehensive tools that anyone can have in order to help them better navigate the stresses and challenges of life.
Q. Reading the title of your book ‘Create Prosperity’ automatically makes one think about money and wealth however reading your book clearly explains that this is not necessarily the case? How do you define prosperity?
A. Prosperity isn’t something you get – it’s a state of being, it’s who you are. It’s about how you feel about all facets of your life, living in alignment with your values, having a sense of purpose, having a peaceful mind, a healthy body, harmonious relationships and feeling alive. It includes laughter, love and joy as well as financial abundance.
Q. You make reference to the universal laws that help us understand how our world works. What are these and how do they influence us?
A. Our world is energy-based and operates according to certain principles – and of course with further research into quantum physics and other areas new understandings are emerging all the time. The Law of Attraction is perhaps the best known and this dictates that like attracts like. Every thought and feeling has a vibration – negative thoughts and feelings have a low, slow frequency, positive thoughts and feelings have a high, fast frequency. Your energy speaks to the world – this is who I am, this is how I think and feel (regardless of what you try to hide) – and sends you people and events in resonance. The Law of Perception is about your perceptions becoming your reality. Events, situations and circumstances are always neutral but we create a meaning around them according to our conditioning, beliefs and assumptions. We assign everything a meaning, good or bad – but it comes from inside us, not from outside, so each day we create our world in accordance to the meanings that we attach to each event.
Q. What is the ‘choices method’ and in what way does the ‘choices method’ enhance the success of EFT?
A. The Choices Method was pioneered by Dr. Patricia Carrington to use EFT to install positive ideas as well release the negative. It enhances the success of EFT in that it moves people forward in the direction of what they want to create. For instance a setup statement could be “Even though I feel anxious about public speaking I choose to feel calm and relaxed”. It also counteracts the difficulty with affirmations in that they can set up contradictions within us when we don’t believe the affirmation we are saying. If we say “I am calm and relaxed” when we don’t feel it, that little voice in our head might say “No, I’m not” whereas we can more readily accept saying “I choose to feel calm and relaxed”.
Q. In both your books you have many examples of when to apply EFT. Do you always recommend that someone sees an EFT practitioner prior to using EFT or is self-learning and practice equally as effective?
A. I don’t think there is any requirement at all to see an EFT practitioner prior to using EFT. It is a wonderful tool to use on yourself but at the same time we need to understand that it is often quite difficult to work with ourselves. We can be stuck in our own belief systems and defence mechanisms and so for deeper things or issues that you are stuck on or that you find overwhelming it is definitely a good idea to work with a practitioner. The other thing to remember is that when you start tapping, emotions or memories that have been repressed may start to come to the surface and be difficult to deal with and it’s important to get help if that happens.
Q. From a sceptics point of view the process would seem similar to the power of positive thinking and the power of suggestion what additional benefit does the tapping create?
A. I don’t think anyone who has used EFT with an expert for more than 10 minutes could ever hold that point of view! Positive thinking happens in the conscious mind and doesn’t actually engage with the subconscious mind which is where our conditioned thinking and past traumatic experiences and the emotions that go with them are held. Tapping engages the subconscious mind and so can create resolution of the past experiences which are causing our current distress.
Q. How long does it take to change a thought pattern when using EFT? And how often do we need to apply this technique?
A. These are hard questions to answer. How long to change a thought pattern depends on a number of factors such as how long the thought pattern has existed, how deeply embedded it is, and what resistance there is to letting go of it.
EFT can be applied in different ways – in the moment when something is happening (for instances as first aid in an accident or emotional upset) or on a session by session basis to deal with issues in an ongoing way. How often you use it may depend on what you want to heal and how fast you want to heal. If for instance you are dealing with an addiction or serious illness then tapping numerous times a day will bring about the best result. On the other hand very specific issues may be resolved in one short 15 minute session.
Q. What are the most common reasons for seeking assistance from an EFT practitioner in your experience?
A. I actually see people with a very wide range of issues such as stress and anxiety from various causes, relationship difficulties, dissatisfaction with business or career progress, health challenges, lack of self-esteem, and emotional issues such as grief or anger.
Q. When dealing with clients there may be an inbuilt resistance to change or a lack of understanding of emotions. How do you deal with these key elements that can determine the success level of EFT?
A. I wouldn’t say there MAY be an inbuilt resistance to change, I’d say there is ALWAYS an inbuilt resistance to change! One part of us wants to do things differently and another part of us doesn’t want to – hence the conflict we find ourselves in. One of the strengths of EFT is that it can be used to help resolve this resistance and the conflict and sometimes that is the first port of call with tapping. EFT can be used on any sort of problem so we acknowledge the resistance and tap on it like anything else.
Many people tend to avoid their feelings by being up in their head and some people have difficulty feeling their feelings in their body but again this is something that can be tapped on. One way of getting in touch with emotions is to notice where tension is in your body, such as tightness in your shoulders, or a knot in your stomach, and then ask yourself the question “If this tension was an emotion, what emotion would it be”. You might be surprised at how the body starts to talk to you when you pay attention to it.
Q. Defining a problem can sometimes be difficult; it seems EFT works best with specific problems. How do you break down an issue to make it more specific?
A. I always start with what is known in the moment and then ask questions that call forth clarity and detail and perhaps a memory. Take something simple like a headache. I would ask where exactly the headache is, (e.g. over one eye, both eyes, the forehead, a band round the head, then what the pain feels like (aching, throbbing, stabbing), when did it come on, do they often get it, is there an emotion associated with it, how do they feel about having it, does it remind them of anything. It’s a process of drilling down with questions and then tapping on the specifics.
Q. EFT is a powerful self-help technique but does its success rely on the positivity or support of the people you associate with. For example if you have negative people around you does this diminish success levels or can this be filtered out?
A. No, it doesn’t depend on other people at all. And of course a good thing to do is tap on the issue of other people being negative and how that affects you.
Q. Whilst tapping you make statements – how do you form these statements to avoid negativity?
A. In EFT you don’t have to avoid negativity at all! In fact the statement consists of whatever negative thing is happening whether it is a physical symptom, negative emotion, self-sabotaging action or negative thought pattern, because as you focus on the negative while tapping, your energy system balances, the symptom disappears, your body relaxes and your mind becomes calm and clear. So it’s fine to say negative things when you are tapping but if you say negative things without tapping at the same time you will be strengthening the negativity.