EFT: A Skeptic’s Review

This has been sitting in my drafts since November of 2009! Obviously a much pondered subject.

I’m sure most of you have probably heard about EFT one place or another; the most high profile advocate is Gala Darling, who says that it fixed her eating disorder, among other things. Sarah Von of Yes & Yes also experimented with it.

I myself first read of it on Gala’s blog, and I was totally skeptic. I’m pretty skeptical of most things unless I’ve experienced them myself or someone can tell me exactly how and why it works. I can appreciate the irony of this, given some of my beliefs – but everything I believe is for a reason, one way or another!

Anyways. After hearing so many great things about it, I decided to try it for myself. Not with anything physical, but anxieties, negative emotions, things like that. It feels abso-freaking-lutely ridiculous. I mean, I feel like an idiot suggesting yoga and meditation to people, let alone saying touchy-feely-lovey things while tapping on “meridian points”.

However, it does seem to work to some degree. I’m not big on acupuncture or acupressure and thus know nothing about any of the terms involved in it, or whether it actually works. My opinion is that EFT works almost like a more active form of meditation – you’re doing a calming & repetitive motion while saying a phrase that gives your subconscious something to work on.

I didn’t experience any magical breakthroughs of epic proportions. I did find that I generally felt calmer and overall better after an EFT session. It’s relatively easy to tap off a few rounds in the shower (wow, now that sounds bad out of context!) and guzzle some water afterwards. I consider EFT a fairly useful tool to have in my arsenal of helpful things to get myself out of a funk. I personally seem to have better luck with yoga and meditation, but obviously some people find EFT more useful than I do, and I don’t really feel like I can discount their experiences just because mine weren’t the same.

And of course, with any medical issue, I’m going to tell you to go to a doctor first instead of tapping on pressure points or whatever. I don’t think Western medicine has all of the answers, but I think it’s a good idea to work with the tools that are proven to have some chance of working than something that’s not.

Have you tried EFT? (or acupuncture, for that matter?) Any experiences you’d like to share?

  • http://www.mischiefmydear.com/dramatispersonae Ashe Mischief

    I really appreciate that you took the time to try it (I always feel silly when I think about trying it), and give us a non-explosive review about it. Because… I can kind of see it working, in the way you describe it.

  • http://clandestinechic.com Sheena

    I’d honestly never heard of EFT until I read about it here. I’d be more interested in looking into it more. I’m all for looking at alternatives to calm stress. I have done acupuncture a few times and you know, I do feel like I saw some great benefits in the process. I’d feel calmer and more…focused? My acupuncturist also said it helped with sinus issues (a huge pain for me) and I do feel that it did help a bit, but I wouldn’t say that I felt “cured” of anything. However, as you said, I did just feel overall better.
    .-= Sheena´s last blog ..Welcome to her world:My Janelle Monae live show experience. =-.

  • http://www.wicked-whimsy.com Michelle

    @Ashe – Yes…I did find it useful but I find the “official” explanation of EFT hard to believe under any circumstances. To me, my explanation makes a lot more sense! And that’s kind of how it “feels” like it works, to me.

    @Sheena – Maybe that’s why I was so skeptical about EFT, I don’t really know how acupuncture works and I think EFT is supposed to be a similar idea except with pressure instead of needles. TBH a lot of the explanations on the official website seem like…well…a new-agey crock. Which is what made me so skeptical in the first place…

  • http://www.innyvinny.com Alicia

    I have no idea what this is and am going to have to revisit Gala’s archives to find out.

    Three cheers to you for trying it out though.

  • Retro Chick

    I’ve heard of this, but don’t know much about it. I’ve thought about giving it a go for the same reason you said, it’s always handy to have a load of techniques at hand to try if you feel yourself getting in a mood!

    Thanks for the review, I should give it a go. I don’t care HOW things work, I’m a big fan of placebos!

  • http://www.brokennerves.net M. Dominic

    I’ve given this a shot once or twice and I feel similarly to you – it feels very much like an active form of meditation – not good or bad, but something to do with your hands. I think as part of a larger scheme of things (yoga, meditation, positive thinking and for me, GTD) it’ll help make anyone feel like their life is in order.
    .-= M. Dominic´s last blog ..AFK =-.

  • http://www.glassofwin.com Rachael

    I never heard of this until I just read it now. I’d like to look into it, but as I’m on blood thinners I don’t know if acupuncture is a great idea for me…
    .-= Rachael´s last blog ..Tasty Tuesday: Crepes Suzette =-.

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  • http://twitter.com/harrisfellman Harris Fellman

    Y’all might want to check out FasterEFT instead… much less silly, and actually more effective than long form EFT. It’s created by a guy named Robert G Smith. Just go to YouTube and search for “FasterEFT” – he’s got a few hundred videos up. I

  • Alisha

    My mum had some ‘tapping’ done and found it to be helpful and decided to take me for some! I did not want it intially and thought it looks silly and how will it help me deal with some serious emotional issues! Now I have been for some sessions I do feel it has kind of helped. No it did not bring huge magical changes and I never expected it too! However I feel more calmer/content and willing to try out and do things I would not do before! But perhaps that is because I REALLY WANT TO CHANGE though as opposed to the change coming from tapping? I do miss my EFT therapist as sessions with her did help me feel a bit calmer and content with emotional issues! Anyone considering it do give it a go! It could help you and it is so simple to do and can be done yourself!

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Vickis-Smith/100000695737253 Vickis Smith

    Great results with acupuncture (back, neck problems, other pain); my little dog had great results as well.  Re EFT tapping- The first time I used it my craving for a specific sweet vanished. It has PROVEN results for even the most horrific of experiences. Please continue to google  where you will find out far more. You don’t even have to believe in it for it to work!


  • Dan

    EFT works at times, but it doesn’t seem to have permanent results for me, otherwise I need to keep on tapping and tapping, and I shouldn’t have to tap on the same issues day in day out. There are a lot of claims that EFT can cure anything, and that is bogus. It can *alleviate* psychological issues, but from personal experience, it doesn’t *cure* anxiety/depression symptoms, because these symptoms are often a biological basis. For me, these symptoms still return, regardless of EFT. EFT does not change your biological status, but it does affect your energy field. There are a lot of free EFT videos to watch online where you can learn the technique on your own. There are also a lot of people, who attend a couple of EFT weekend workshops, and claim to be therapists. They charge their services like a psychotherapist. Be wary of them because they’re not properly trained psychotherapists. Also a lot of people who practice EFT seem to have this god like mentality that you can tap on anything and get a complete cure. They then make claims if you tap on the right emotional issues, you can find cures for medical concerns, and that is dangerous since an EFT practioner might think they’re a doctor. So I can say EFT does have its benefits and it definitely helps alleviate symptoms, but it is not a cure all, and it has its limits to how properly it can work. Definitely try it, but don’t think it’s the cure all for all your anxiety and depression issues. It’s a tiherapy that has its limits.