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EFT – why you might want to think about giving it a whirl

EFT-WordCloud

I really like EFT ( Emotional Freedom Technique.) aka “Tapping”. It lives under the umbrella of “Energy Psychology” techniques, and it looks so dumb (especially when you are tapping under your arm and on the top of your head) that you may well feel that it’s a bunch of hooey – but what you can achieve with it really is awesome.

As you know, I’m all about the science, and most double blind reputable studies point to EFT simply using “The Power of the Placebo” to affect change in a person. Now, I’m 100% with Tim Minchin on science and “Alternative Medicine” (Homeopathic Sugar pills in particular), and that “Modern Medicine” is something that should always be matched and used appropriately to an individual’s health circumstances –  but I also feel that Placebology, where the patient affects their own change because they believe that the placebo they are using will change them for the better definitely has a place in the therapeutic process.

I feel it works because it allows a person to be 100% honest with themselves, as tapping out the various issues and free-flow verbalising around them will make us make intuitive perspective leaps that we could never make in a flat state with a conscious mind. When I tap on issues myself, I’m always surprised by something I say that “just falls out of my brain via my mouth” as I’m associating.

The Founder of EFT, Gary Craig, discovered that in persons with anxiety or fear, that by tapping on 9 specific meridian points and using a set of very specific “set-up phrases” and then talking honestly, openly, and usually in negatively phrased statements about issues through the tapping process, that the issues can be reduced to a place where they have little to no on-going effect, very quickly, and with much less stress to the patient than via traditional psychological methods . He believes that the tapping mechanisms of EFT operate in the same way as Acupuncture – activating specific meridian points stimulates them to assist the body in releasing the negative energy feedback loops to remove dis-ease.

There have been studies that show the tapping has a calming effect on the amygdala. I’m sure that you know by now that the amygdala gets activated either for pleasure in the now, or in an amygdala hijack, in a response to a perceived danger, either real or imaginary.

In a fear situation, the amygdala causes adrenaline and cortisol to be released to prepare our body for action (i.e. to fight or to run). Where a “potentially harmful” situation is perceived, the amygdala works with the  hippocampus to enforce its previously learned “stay safe” feed-back loop. For instance, if a person has been in a road accident, the experienced fear gets stored away and then every time a car journey is needed, anxiety levels irrationally increase.

During his development work, Gary discovered that EFT isn’t just for “fear calming” situations, it can be used on pretty much any occurring issue:

  • Personal Performance Boosters
    • Achieving personal and professional goals
    • Public speaking
    • Sports performance
    • Fat reduction & body composition
    • Job interviews
    • Self-confidence
  • Emotional Challenges
    • Stress
    • anxiety
    • phobias
    • Depression
    • feeling overwhelmed
    • Relationship issues
    • Insomnia
    • nightmares
    • Panic attacks
    • Sexual abuse
    • Obsessions
    • compulsions
    • Traumatic memories
    • Procrastination
    • Poor grades
    • Grief
    • loss
    • pet loss
    • Post Traumatic Stress Disorder
    • Addictions
    • overeating
  • Physical Issues
    • Allergies
    • Migraines
    • Fatigue
    • Fibromyalgia
    • pain management

NB: While EFT has produced remarkable results for many people, it must still be considered to be in the experimental stage and people and the therapists that advise clients to use EFT must take complete responsibility for their own use of the technique. If you try it, give it a good go, and find that it doesn’t work for you, don’t sweat it. Just try another self help technique. Never let using EFT or any other self-help technique that I or anyone else might talk about get in the way of seeking professional medical help where required.

So, why am I particularly talking about EFT this week? Well, there’s been more ISIS terrorist activity in a few places around the world in the last few weeks (Baghdad, Ankara and Brussels) and so, in an effort to help us all combat Hate I wanted to share this Brad Yates Tapping video with you: Clearing Hatred – Tapping with Brad Yates

NB: if you have never viewed Brad’s Channel before, before you start tapping away, you must watch these two videos first – as Brad is very clear that you know what you are doing, and that you take full responsibility for your own well being.

I’m connecting my own dots on this one, as I’m currently training to be able to use EFT with you in our coaching practice. I first discovered EFT around 2000, and I’ve used it off and on since then (I’ll admit more off than on!).

I got sharply reminded about using it way more often, and in combination with Forgiveness work as part of my working through Denise Duffield Thomas’ Lucky Bitch Money BootCamp – and it’s now happily part of my daily routine again.

So, what are you going to try and use EFT on? My advice is to try it on everything :-). Pick a topic and drop me a comment below. Then we can start working to connect your dots!

Catch you next time!

Intermission…

August was a very weird time – an all too brief 4 day visit from one of my partners, two funerals, a wedding and the Nineworlds Geekfest conference sandwiched in between them – All very exhausting emotional things – followed by a period of “brain fuzz” from “doing all the stuff”, so not much room for the inspiration needed to write to take effect.

I’ve wanted to write my next post (“You can’t do it wrong“) for the last three weeks, but my brain simply didn’t want to give me “words” of any shape.  I did manage to journal a little bit about one of the funerals (to aid creating white space in my brain) but I know there is way more in there that needs to come out. When I’ve not been at work (doing “the minimum needed to get by and keep projects moving”), I’ve spent most of my time either sleeping, fussing over my orchids/watching YouTube videos on Orchid care and finishing up re-watching S7 of Buffy the Vampire Slayer.

Now, I could chose to beat myself up over this seeming “waste of time”, and a few years ago I very much would have done, feeling all the guilt around “doing nothing” and I would have tried to force “things to work”, which would inevitably lead to life not working at all and even more “things not happening” in life as I wallowed and flailed.

However, taking the Mindful view on things, I simply acknowledge that having had a very emotion filled and time sapping beginning to August,  I needed some time to reset. And my doing that self-care and taking that time to get back in the flow is not something that is “bad” or “wrong”, it is something that just “is”. And I have no need at all to feel bad about that at all.

Take my work here for instance. I dedicated myself to producing world-changing content once a week, and my lack of words to the world since the beginning of August could be seen as a massive failure. I could sit here in a puddle of self-recrimination and self-doubt, allow that negativity to enable me to listen to my amygdala and simply give up on my writing and myself  – because changing the world takes effort… and that equals resistance.

I do know that for the last week or so, where my brain has been up and firing again, that I have been very subject to resistance. I’ve been wallowing, “filling up my eyes” in a rather drastic way, doing anything to seemingly avoid writing or creativity (Although I have been spending lots of time with my Orchids!).

However, using that resistance as my compass, and knowing that my time-out allowed my brain to heal, enough is enough and it’s time to push on through! It’s time to give thanks and forgiveness in my life, open up to abundance and start shining again.

I’m hoping that I’ve given you reassurance and food for thought. Have you had a time where you felt that everything was just too much? How did you cope then? And are you now working Mindfully and with Gratitude to accept that sometimes life hands you a shit sandwich (to quote Marie Forleo!) and that you have to deal and move along. Leave me a comment below, and we can start working on connecting those dots.

Catch you shortly!

Image used “Intermission (5/7)” by jnyemb
Used Under Creative commons licence: Attribution 2.0 Generic (CC BY 2.0)

Eating well – Preparing a good steak.

well rested steak with sauce

I quickly need to define what I mean when I say “eating well” – I ditched refined Carbohydrates in 1999, and apart from a blip 2005-2007,  I’ve eaten a low carbohydrate lifestyle ever since.  I believe that we are an omnivorous animal that is adapted to eat other animals, eggs, some plants, seeds, nuts, and berries. I also believe that dairy is food only if your evolutionary heritage has not left you lactose intolerant.

I do not believe that we are evolved to eat grains or other plants that require a lengthy preparation/cooking process to render them edible to us. I know if I eat grains, especially wheat, my health takes a steep nose-dive. I get brain fog, stomach issues and lethargy. As you can guess by now, I’m not a vegetarian. I choose instead to eat high-quality product and use all of the animals I eat where I can.

I’m also thankful that I was born in a part of the planet where I get to economically make this choice.

One thing that you need to learn when being a low-carber is how to cook meat well; Using the Slow Cooker to make beautifully unctuous broths and briskets, effective fast cook cuts, getting the best from organ meats.

How I cook steak: When your ingredients are good, cooking them well is only respectful to the animal. I’ve found a method that gives me never fail excellent results – The basis of this method is to cook for half the cooking time in an open pan, and half in a closed space.

I like Rib-eye myself, but this method works well for Rump, Sirloin & Fillet also. I cook my steak rare, so the timings below are for that –  I’ve added some notes in the comments for cooking to medium and above.

Take the steak out of the fridge at least 2 hours before you are going to cook it – it needs to come to room temp. Season it with pepper & salt.

The key to the frying is a good heavy based non-stick or well seasoned to be non-stick pan. Heat the pan on the hob until HOT – do not add any oil.

Lay the meat straight into hot pan. If the cut is of an average thickness (about 1.5cm), leave it alone for 1 minute. Do not prod, poke or otherwise disturb it during this time, as the mixture of direct high heat and no movement caramelises the sugars in the meat, giving a tasty brown crust.

Flip it and leave it again for 1 minute. Again, no poking or prodding – let the maillard reaction do its funky thang!

steak dry pan fliped once

If the steak is a thin cut,  I decrease the timings  by 30 secs each side, if the steak is thick, increase by 30 if thick. I also open the kitchen window, cos it’s gets a bit steamy/smoky!

Once done, remove the pan from heat and pop it onto a trivet or heatproof mat and slap a lid on it for a further 2 minutes. As the pan is still very hot, the cooking will continue, and the lid is trapping moisture, which steams the meat –  which you want to retain a juicy steak.

Once this is done, remove the steak to a warmed plate and rest for twice as long as you cooked it. Do not miss out the resting period; Resting relaxes the meat fibres, allows the steak to rebalance and release the juice and blood it is holding in the centre back out into the fibres, which makes for a juicer and more tasty eating experience.

resting steak de-juicing

Don’t believe me? Here is the science to prove that a rested steak is 7% more tasty.

What to do whilst the steak rests? Steam some broccoli or other green veg to go with the meat and make a cream based sauce (the best steak sauce IMHO):

Over high heat, de-glase the steak pan with good big splash of Red Wine, grind of pepper, splash of Balsamic and/or Worcester sauce.deglasing the pan

Allow to reduce until that is “not much liquid” then add ~200ml Double cream.

adding cream to reduced wine

Stir continuously and scrape down pan sides to incorporate the caramelised cream for a few mins (Maillard reactions again!), then add the meat juices from the rested steakadding meat juices to the sauce and then stir again until sauce is reduced to “glossy and rather thick”.
reduced and glossy cream sauce Take off heat immediately at this point and pour over your steak and broccoli.

steak with veggies and sauce

Don’t leave it to sit in the pan, and/or leave it not stirred as the extra heat will make it split. It also splits if you overcook/reduce it too far, but it still tastes really good, even if it not looks a touch unattractive. You can bring it back by adding another good splash of cold cream ad stirring manically, but then you may have to reduce it again some more.

Also, if you are wondering why I didn’t season it, that’s because I already did, when I added the meat juices. The meat juices carry some of the seasoning from the steak.

This method of making tasty steak, veggies and sauce for dinner never fail me. Leave me a comment below about your experience with cooking steak and we can start working toward connecting those dots.

Catch you next week!