Living with Cancer and EFT

EFT & Cancer

By Emma Roberts

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Cancer is, at the very least, an unwelcome journey that we don’t choose to take. However, for many reasons it is becoming one that many of us will experience at some point in our lives.  And when that happens it is not only shocking, but opens the floodgates on a deluge of other emotional and physical responses.
EFT does NOT claim to offer a cure for cancer, but is a powerful support for positive wellbeing.  It provides an immediate tool for managing this ongoing emotional rollercoaster, helping to calm and rebalance the energy system whilst it adjusts to what is happening.  From the start, EFT can be used to help clear the blocks to healing, both physical and emotional. 
The joy of EFT is that it can be used alongside any treatment plan, whatever the prognosis, stage or treatment.  It is the ultimate in complementary therapy as it integrates fully with the medical models and alternative therapies.  It is not a case of either or, but both.
During medical intervention for cancer one can feel very disempowered and out of control, it may seem that something is attacking us from the inside, such as with the toxicity of chemotherapy,  and the client is also often being ‘attacked’ externally during treatment with surgery, radiotherapy etc.  It can feel like being an onlooker in a war zone.  Using EFT gives a way of taking back some control and actively engaging in ones healing process.  This in itself is empowering and positive.  In my experience, cancer patients are amongst the most enthusiastic tappers I know!
The first thing that tends to happen after diagnosis is discussion of treatment. Often there is a sense of urgency and decisions have to be taken when in a place of extreme stress and anxiety.  This time can be overwhelming, not just for the patient, but for those who care for them as well.  From the very beginning EFT has a powerful place in their world.  Tapping at this time will allow clarity to surface through the layers of overwhelmedness and one will be in a better place to make informed choices about treatment. 
Dr David Lake ‘s continuous tapping protocol is an excellent way of managing one’s emotional state easily throughout every day. It is also extremely useful when undergoing any treatment itself. It seems that clients who tap their way through treatment, as well as before and after, have noticeably less side effects than others.  It is easy to do, you can do it single handed, and you don’t need to focus on any particular set-up statement or reminder phrase, just tap continually on the finger points to rebalance your system to do what it needs to do to restore health.
One of the first areas I will go to with my cancer clients is the diagnosis itself, treating it as a specific negative event in its own right, separate from the ongoing angst and trauma.  Using The Tearless Trauma technique, we will work through every aspect of that memory, meticulously, checking and testing as we go, looking for responses to specific voice tones, looks etc, and clearing the trauma of diagnosis from their energy system.  The connection between trauma or shock and cancer is well documented and researched, so this initial treatment to clear the physiological impact of the diagnosis is vitally important.
The word ‘cancer’ can, in itself, create fear, even in those with no history of the disease.  Merely reading or hearing the word seems to access the disease itself at some level.
It can be extremely useful to begin working with a few rounds of EFT simply
repeating the word until the fear surrounding it diminishes.  It often also creates a physical fear response, such as tears or extreme body heat/cold.  Keep coming back to it until it becomes just like any other word.  This does not mean you will feel indifferent to it, but that it loses its energetic charge and the effect that has on your system.
Much medical language revolves around battles and fights. We go to war with
disease. If instead we work with the internal disease state coming from a place of communication and willingness to understand, it frees up our energy to focus on the job of healing.
In this holistic approach, we accept the cancer as a valuable part of ourselves
which is using an inappropriate method of communicating something positive to us, the misunderstood teenager who goes on a destructive spree in order to command attention.  Once understood, the need to behave in such a way is removed and healing can begin.
Our constant thoughts create our reality.  How much more useful is it to think
positively about the cancer as a learning experience than to respond to it with
fear and negativity? The aim is to accept the disease and work with it to heal the body and let it go.
Often a cancer diagnosis can bring with an immediate need to make lifestyle
changes such as giving up smoking, drugs, alcohol, making nutritional adjustments or any financial implications.  Whatever the particular issue is, the shock of a cancer diagnosis and the added anxiety of changing habitual behaviours can be extraordinarily stressful.  With EFT we have a tool that can help to take the edge off this whilst doing the other work to resolve the underlying anxieties which generated the behaviour in the first place.
There are so many areas that EFT can effectively support the dis-ease of cancer.  These include clearing any negative beliefs, conscious or unconscious, connected with the disease itself, and the self. Beliefs are probably the most powerful mechanism in our lives.  People die for their beliefs, they fight for them, religions are based on them, governments are elected because of them.  Do not underestimate the power of belief systems in the healing process.
Look at family history, check for any unresolved grief, specific memories of family members who have had cancer. Research indicates that only 5% of cancer and cardiovascular patients can attribute their disease to heredity (Willett 2002).

The malignancies in a significant number of cancer patients are derived from
environmentally-induced epigenetic alterations and not defective genes (Bruce Lipton, The Biology of Belief).  In other words, it is the effect of the environment on the genes that creates the cancer cells, not the genes themselves. And this environment includes the emotional as well as the physical.
In Chinese medicine, they believe that stagnant energy or Chi creates pain. Stagnant energy creates blockages which can show up physically, possibly as cancer.  Whilst some pain may be necessary as a precaution to causing further damage, EFT provides an effective way of managing and reducing excess pain.  It will not, however, clear pain that is deemed necessary by the unconscious mind.
There is also the obvious use of EFT for managing ones emotional state and
reducing any fears and anxieties that are experienced on a daily basis. Everyone’s journey is different and it is important to respect where you are at. A valuable lesson I learnt early on in my work with cancer is that I had to let go of my own investment in the outcome, my own investment in the client’s healing. This doesn’t mean that I don’t care, of course I do, but it means that my own ‘stuff’ is out of the way and not interrupting their particular path.  As Gary Craig so often says ‘it is through you, not by you’.  
In this article I am choosing to look at the ways EFT can be used to manage
current states, both emotional and physical.  However, it is also very important to resolve underlying core issues which may be contributing to the creation of the disease, negative memories and traumas that are still stuck in our energy system.  I would recommend downloading the Personal Peace Process from www.emofree.com and working in this way as a form of emotional spring clean.
Whilst EFT is ultimately a self help tool, you may need to work initially with an
experience practitioner who can hold you and support you in a safe space as you progress on your journey.
We are still very much at the beginning of our learning with EFT and the energy therapies. There is much to discover and we really don’t know what is ultimately possible here.  However, what we do know is that EFT is a valuable tool in the emotional healing process of cancer, and any other serious disease, and is available to everyone at little or no cost.  We also intuitively know the connection between our emotional and physical wellbeing.  Even if it just ‘makes you feel better’, use it, and who knows, perhaps in years to come we will discover it does so much more than that!  
Emma Roberts, EFT Master
July 2007


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Author's Bio:

EFT Masters, Sue Beer and Emma Roberts are the co-founders of The iEFT Centre as well as the originators and pioneers of Integrated Energy Techniques (IET), bringing together energy psychology and the very best ways of working with Ericksonian Hypnosis, NLP, Coaching, Cognitive Psychotherapy and Psycho-spiritual approaches.


1 Comment


Ruthi Backenroth
Posted October 22, 2010 12:34 PM


Thank you so much for this well written and timely (for me) article. A community member has been kind enough to allow me to tap with her for her cancer symptoms. And you have given me a number of avenues to gently pursue. I will also print out this article for her so that she sees EFT as a viable tool to help her feel better on a day to day basis. She is still in 'Apex country' :-)

One item that is not mentioned much and works very well for a sick, elderly person, as well as someone who is not yet invested in the EFT process, is to suggest that he/she shouldn't tap (or talk) unless she wants to or feels like doing so. I assure her that EFT can work if she just sits there and watches, me as I tap. And it does :) I wonder if that is your experience also.

Ruthi Backenroth


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