Understanding Kids & EFT
What you need to know
Dr. Kim Eisen, EFT-ADV, HHCP
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In my opinion EFT is the #1 resource for reducing children's traumas whether it's after-the-fact or in-the-moment. With children, even though what adults might think is a small thing can be huge to them and we should treat it accordingly. If we take the seconds or minutes to neutralize what's bothering them, they may not have to grow up with tons of issues (barring extreme trauma, but even that may be neutralized).
UNDERSTANDING & EFT segments: (7-11 year old) - (3-6 year old) - (12-16 year old) follows:
Hopefully this will help you gain a little understanding of children and how to work with them. Kids get it (EFT) fast, although our wording needs to be changed slightly according to their understanding and verbiage, i.e. The Magic Buttons vs. the tapping points. When kids learn EFT, they want to teach it to their parents and peers because they think it's cool. They usually don't do a whole bunch of issues, just what is bothering them, and go off to play because it has fallen from their 'now' as a problem or why they are sad or hurt. Younger children don't seem to carry too much into the moment, unless they do (depending on if they've had severe trauma or how emotional the child is).
I also see in what I'll call more emotional or empathetic children, is that they do carry the unspoken or energetic emotions of the parent. For instance if a parent thought they were dumb in school or didn't fit in and have strong feelings about it, somehow, the child (usually 5-7 years) picks this up for what appears to be no reason and starts saying things like 'I'm stupid' or 'I'm dumb' without having direct experience of that. This can also apply to certain fears, anxieties, etc. So, if you see this exhibited in the child, the parent may wish to go back and tap on themselves for when and what they experienced or felt, first, before working with the child.
In the 7-11 year old stage of development children are pretty self-centered/conscious (a natural stage) but are learning peer behavior techniques and certainly weaning back and forth between independence and co- or inter-dependence, they are perfect for EFT if it is approached correctly as it gives them the freedom to do something for themselves with satisfying results. And, they'll probably use it in-the-moment which will be huge to their overall emotional growth. Rather than give them homework with tapping like we do for adults, I let them know that they can use this at anytime they feel hurt, sad or angry. And, sometimes a gentle reminder that they know how to do it or we do a quick run through. I would caution, though, that if they have a 'big' issue (i.e. rape, incest, murder, etc.) that they work with a professional. But for everyday hurts or issues, this would greatly improve their future adult life as they wouldn't carry it with them. One note is that in divorce situations, please EFT on it isn't their fault and reason they might think it's their fault. And, be kind to them and do not argue in front of them (they don't need to know everything) or put down the other parent because the 'other' is their parent and they inherently love them. Don't take that away from them (barring abuse).
Working with EFT and the 7-11 year old - As far as competency of identifying issues, once they learn the technique, they will usually do it in-the-moment' or shortly thereafter when they re-remember it, such as bed time or alone time. They should be instructed that they can use this 'anytime' they feel like it and that it is best to simply say what 'they' think happened and how it honestly made them feel (not what they think they should have felt). i.e. "Even though my best friend didn't talk to me today and I don't know why and it hurt my feelings, I'm still a great (good) kid" "Even though my mom and dad fight and it scares me, it's not about me and I'm still a great kid". Sometimes they are sad and they don't know why or may not wish to discuss it with you. Teach them "Even though I'm sad and don't know why, I'm still a great kid' and usually something will show up, or, "Even though I'm sad about something (they don't have to say what it is to you), I'm still a fabulous kid". They may discuss it with you later, or not, but the important thing is to get them feeling better.
VS. The 3-6 year old which are mostly self-centered/conscious and more into finding their boundaries by showing shadows of independence; they just know what they want and when they want it (most thinking the world revolves around them - again, a natural stage of growth - hence, everything is caused by them. i.e. divorce, abuse, upsets, etc.). This important stage of self-development makes it more appropriate for a professional or a parent to work with them as they are mostly co- or inter-dependent (although some parents would argue this point as the new children are very independent in their thoughts), but nonetheless, they rely on their parents or guardians for many things.
Working with EFT and the 3-6 year old - You'll probably have a good handle on most things that bother your children and they are pretty good at letting you know ; ). You'll usually be working with them in-the-moment, whether they are sad, hurt, angry, having a tantrum, etc. In introducing it to them, I usually ask if they want to play a game, or, try something really neat that'll make them feel better. (Except for tantrums or anger directed at you, in which you'll probably have to surrogate tap on yourself for them). They usually reply with an 'o.k.'. So I show them their 'Magic Buttons' or call them whatever you wish and instruct them to say what I say and do what I do. Use words that you know that they will understand. It is magic, after one or two rounds, they've forgotten (neutralized) the emotion and go off and play. You'll know they are done, because they talk about something else and may even be bored because they're done and there is no reason to continue the game. Eventually, these children will start using it on their own and should be encouraged to do so. Although this may be a delicate subject to some, if their upset is caused by someone else, it is extremely important for the child to realize and you to impart to the child that 'other' people have their own way of doing things, good or bad, and although it may be different, unfair or not nice, it has nothing to do with 'them' ("It's not about you"), and, there are many many good people who are like us, and, different from us, and that's what makes the world such a wonderful place.
The 12-16 year old stage involves Peer Acceptance, Self-Identity (more independence) and the feeling/fear of lost-ness in leaving who they thought they were to becoming something else, but they're just not quite sure what that is. It's a little scary and even though they don't want to be inter-dependent, they don't want to be alone (and most think they are completely alone in someway). They think they're grown-up, and don't want to go to their parents or other adult, but don't know what to do or have the capability yet and try to handle things on their own or with an equal. The freedom of EFT in assisting them to adulthood can launch them beyond their expectations of what they can do.
Working with EFT and the 12-16 year old - I left this one for last as it can be a dichotomy, because if they 'get it' with EFT and use it, it'll do wonders and have had great success. I would just introduce it as indicated in the 7-11 year old section, just changing the wording to be more expressive. You will have to speak their language such as 'like' 'uhhh' 'really cool', etc. (you get the point). Again, if they think it's cool, they'll teach everyone they know. If they think 'they know it all' you'll have a more difficult time to even get them to the table to introduce it. This is probably where you'll want a professional (outsider, not mom or dad) to work with them or teach them EFT.
All in all, children are not that much different from adults with the range of emotions that can be had. They just have the benefit of not carrying around baggage or issues for as long. Learning EFT now can save them tons of heartache and hurt in the future or at the very least the amount of time they carry it. What a gift you can give them!
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Dr. Kim Eisen is an experienced and intuitive Holistic Health Couselor & Practitioner; spiritual healer and Life Guidance Coach since 1999, using energy psychology tools to eliminate the limiting beliefs and emotional blocks a person has to moving forward.
She offers private sessions via telephone or video IM worldwide and personal or video group/corporate sessions taylored to the groups venue. For more information, go to www.DoEFT.com. Feel free to join the ongoing group teleseminar on a wide range of subjects at www.EFTteleseminars.com.
Certified in EFT and MTT along with other energy modalities, she combines her own unique blend and the art of delivery to achieve the quickest results for her clients. Most people have an area of their life that they would like to change or excel at. Along with the Law of Attraction, we have to eliminate resistance to those things we want, which gives us clarity to make great decisions and manifest our desires.
Kim Eisen, HHCP, EFTCert-I, Ph.D, D.D.
Holistic Health Counselor
Intuitive and Experienced Certified EFT Practioner
(612) 802-HEAL (4325)
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