Chronic Anxiety

by Ray
(Saltillo Coah MX)

Dear Ben,
I want to ask you what is the way to follow if the root of the anxiety are fears and worries carried to the extreme and the root of those fears are the lack of affection experienced from childhood and then the feelings of defenselessness that I felt to "survive" in a hostile urban environment as I experienced; how can I treat all of these issues with EFT in order to avoid the cognitive therapy which takes longer to release the terrible anxiety symptoms?

Ben's Answer:

When Anxiety is rooted in childhood trauma, it is important to use EFT to address those specific traumas. You can try tapping for the feelings that you remember feeling as a child - but will get the most benefits out of defining any specific memories - moments or events in your early life and the feelings, thoughts, and body-sensations that you are aware of in THIS moment when you think about, or talk about those particular memories. With complex or severe traumas, sometimes it is necessary to do this process with a therapist or trained EFT practitioner to help you stay focused and provide some feeling of support and safety.

If memories are very intense or overwhelming, then start by tapping about your fear of your feelings about these memories. That is, tap about the fear of the memories, before you start tapping about the memories themselves. When you do tap about an old traumatic memory, try narrating the "scene" as if you were a film maker and keep that scene within one minute of actual time. If there is more, than do each segment separately.

Also, when tapping about old traumas, try naming the age that you believe you were when it happened - and speak to that child-part of your consciousness while you are tapping. The child in you will be comforted by this and it can be very healing.

As for Cognitive Therapy - there is no conflict between that and EFT and in fact the two go together very well - so you may want to do both.

Wishing you Peace,
Ben Schwarcz, MFT
Santa Rosa Psychotherapist

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