Clearing Old Trauma, Creating New Reactions

By Pamela Bruner

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When using meridian tapping techniques such as EFT to clear a trauma, clients will often report getting confused about their story, the account of what happened. One idea is that this is due to the fact that the memory has been stored with an emotional ‘tag’ attached to it.  The tag may be fear, anger, grief, guilt, or any combination of similar emotions.  As the negative emotions are cleared, the story becomes harder to remember or access, because the emotional ‘tags’ have been removed.

Because this can be disconcerting to the client, and also because they aren’t quite sure what to do with the memory which now feels so odd, I’ve found the use of a repeating Choice statement to be a great way to put a new emotional tag on the story.

Introducing these new emotional states has to be done carefully.  Introducing a powerful reframe when the client is still in the grip of negative emotion will tend to create resistance, and interfere with the clearing.  I never try to suggest this type of reframe until the client’s level of intensity is below a 5 on a scale of 0 to 10 on a particular aspect.  First I ask the client

‘If you could wave a magic wand and feel any emotion you want about this event,  even if it doesn’t seem possible now, what would it be?’

Asking the client means that you get something very meaningful to them – for example, suppose the client says ‘calm and peace’.

I suggest using identical words for the Choice statement each time.  For example:

Even though I still have some anger at my mother for her treatment of me on my graduation day … It was a long time ago, I choose calm and peace now.

Even though I have some remaining sadness about what I said on graduation day … It was a long time ago, I choose calm and peace now.

Even though I feel guilty about what I said on graduation day … It was a long time ago, I choose calm and peace now.

Using the ‘Tell the Story’ technique, at each sentence of the story, when the level of intensity drops below 5 out of 10, instead of using a traditional tapping affirmation such as ‘I deeply and completely accept myself’, I substitute the Choice statement.  As we walk through Telling the Story, I have found that clients begin to welcome the Choice statement (I choose calm and peace now) as a way of wrapping up each element, each sentence of the story.  Powerful possibilities come out of this, such as:

The client may begin to see the trauma as an event which has made them more powerful or capable, having lived through it. (Note: this is entirely the client’s interpretation – I would not make this for them.)

The client may be more able to step into forgiveness of themselves, or others, if the new emotional tag for the story is calm and peace.  Compassion is another good word for a new emotional tag.

When using the Choice statement, I will do either two shortcut rounds (one negative and one positive) or three shortcut rounds (one negative, one positive, and one round alternating the negative and the positive) depending on intuition.  At the end of the session, when the client thinks of the traumatic event, the emotional reaction is now calm and peace.  This is also a good addition to the testing process, because those emotions won’t tend to stick if these are any aspects left to clear out.



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Author's Bio:

Pamela Bruner is a business success coach and a meridian tapping expert. She is the creator of the ‘Business Success Breakthrough Program’ which combines practical business-building advice for entrepreneurs with meridian tapping techniques such as EFT. Pamela is also the co-author of the book ‘EFT and Beyond – Cutting Edge Techniques for Personal Transformation’.
http://www.MakeYourSuccessEasy.com, http://www.BSBProgram.com


1 Comment


Posted March 04, 2010 11:43 AM

I LOVE your magic wand line: " If you could wave a magic wand and feel any emotion you want about this event, even if it doesnít seem possible now, what would it be?" Excellent - for all the reasons you cite.

Thanks for taking time to write for our benefit.


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