How long will it take? And 8 tips for EFT to work faster

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EFT works instantly. If you focus on the negative feeling and tap, the feeling will lesson. I use EFT daily; when the dog is barking next door for too long, when I get an upsetting email, when I’m worried about something or someone, when I’m waiting to hear a result of a test, when I’m under a lot of stress and even when I’m on a long trip and can’t get to the restroom :)  Tapping for the negative emotions in our daily lives helps ease our stress and live happier lives, but it won’t solve our problems permanently. There are skills you can use in EFT, however, to clear the REASONS for the way you are feeling instead of just easing the negative feeling. Using EFT with the reasons can then permanently clear your learned negative reactions. Wouldn’t it be nice to be in control of your feelings rather than your feelings being in control of you?

As a trainer, practitioner and video training producer in EFT, I’ve seen thousands of sessions. I’ve also worked with a wide variety of issues. Recently, I worked with a young football fan sitting next to me on a plane for his fear of flying.  He was flying with his buddies to see his team in the playoffs. He said he’d try ANYTHING. It took seven minutes. The airplane had wifi and he immediately jumped on facebook telling the world he was “cured.” On the other side of the spectrum, I had a young woman with diagnosed clinical episodic depression and she was so depressed that she refused to tap on her own between our sessions and she could only handle coming to see me once a month. It took six years.

From the examples above, you can see there are many variables.  With the flying phobia, there was a single event where he developed that fear, so it didn’t take much tapping to clear it. With the young woman, her lack of focus, resistance to helping herself, and inability to tap on her own, it took maybe 6 times as long as it should have. The good news is that she overcame many other problematic issues along the way in those 6 years.

Want to clear your issues faster? Follow these helpful instructions:

1. Don’t tap globally.  It’s not “I’m always sad.” Tap on what sad feels like to you: “this hard knot in the center of my throat that makes me want to cry.”

2. Look for the event where you FIRST learned the behavior. If you can’t remember the first time, start with the earliest you CAN remember. If you hate men, when is the first time you can remember that you hated men? Was it just one man the first time? What event taught you to hate him?  How did that protect you? Use the movie technique or the advanced EFT technique called Matrix Reimprinting and clear your feelings around that event.

3. Look for aspects. You have a fear of flying? What exactly are you afraid of?  Not being in control? The crowds? Being locked in a tube? Falling out of the sky? The pilot not being skilled enough? Terrorists? The engine noise? Germs? Tap on all you find.

4. Work with one aspect at a time. See all those aspects above? Tap on one at a time. Measure the intensity of “not being in control” by giving it a number up to 10. Zero is that it isn’t bothering you at all and 10 means that you want to run screaming out of the room. Write the number down. Tap a few rounds on that aspect until it’s a zero. THEN you can move on to the next aspect. Remember that as you tap one aspect down, another will seem stronger. You’re right, it is stronger, but don’t switch aspects until you’ve got the first one down. So if “germs” is a 10 and “the engine noise” is a 7, as you get the “germs” intensity down below 7, it won’t bother you as much as “the engine noise.” But stay with “germs” until it gets to a zero before moving onto “the engine noise.”

5. Break it down. If you are “always sad,” work on getting more specific. What you are sad about at that precise moment? Work with one thing at a time. What are you sad about right now? Pick one thing and explore that. Let’s say you can’t get up in the morning and that makes you sad. So start asking! What BAD thing am I worried might happen if I get out of bed? Am I afraid of something? Do I feel protected if I stay in bed? From what? What GOOD thing will happen if I stay in bed? Take notes and tap on all of those. Work on one piece at a time.  You can’t move an entire mountain unless you move one rock at a time.

6. Always, always tap on the negative. We are often taught to stop focusing on the negative. It’s “bad” for us. That’s true unless we TAP while we are focusing on the negative. It’s the tapping that clears the negative feelings. Even when we force ourselves to think positive, it doesn’t work for long. We are trying to use will power instead of clearing the negative feelings first. EFT works when we tap WHILE we FOCUS on those negative feelings. Clear those negative feelings and the positive flows all by itself. (After tapping on the negative, you can begin to introduce positives like in Dr. Pat Carrington’s choices method or Silvia Hartmann’s Positive EFT.)

7. Do the Personal Peace Procedure. Write a list of all your negative events. Start with what you can remember in your childhood because we build the basis of our reactions before the age of 8.  You will have WELL over 100. Work with one everyday using the Movie Technique. Clear all the aspects around each event. It can take 20 -45 minutes. Give that as a gift to yourself. Imagine what you can clear in a year! Learn how at

8. Don’t give up. It took time to accumulate issues, they don’t normally disappear in an instant, especially when you are working on your own. I’m a professional so I know what to look for. Give yourself time when working on your own. Remember to work on one event and one emotional aspect of that event at a time. Issues are sometimes interlinked and one must be cleared before another can be fully cleared. Just keep tapping. Remember that changes can sometimes be subtle. A young man came to me with anger issues. He slammed room doors, threw dishes in the sink hard enough to break them, slammed the refrigerator and cabinet doors and yelled a lot. After 2 sessions, he told me he didn’t think it was working. I told him to ask his roommates because I had received calls from them asking for appointments. THEY noticed he wasn’t slamming things anymore, but it felt so natural to him that he hadn’t even noticed.

I often use my friend Ann Adams’ words, “EFT is simple, people are not.” Yes, EFT works quickly, but if your issue is sticky, don’t give up. And keep tapping for those daily annoyances right while you’re feeling it, it’ll make you feel better. And sometimes simply feeling better is everything.

Much Support,


Karin Davidson


Karin Davidson is a highly sought after speaker on using meridian tapping techniques for self help and helping others. She is certified hypnotherapist, a Reiki master, an EFT Trainer, the first Matrix Reimprinting Trainer in the USA, co-founder of the Meridian Tapping Techniques Association and co-author of the EFT Levels Comprehensive Training Resource coursebooks. She has video taped and produced over 100 training DVDs for EFT, tapping, Matrix Reimprinting and many other energy healing modalities. Karin is known for her warmth, humor, and straight forward teaching style.

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9 Responses

  1. Betty says:

    Hello Karin, I´m very glad I got to read your post, even if it´s a couple of years later….I am starting to use EFT because I suffer from anxiety; I know several things that are causing this anxiety and now I know that I have to work with each issue separately.

    Still I have some questions on the tapping itself since I have seen different ways of doing it, some use the gama point, others don´t. Some use additional tapping points (head, under the chest, fingers, wrists…9 and others don´t…How can I know which is the best way?

    Thank you again for this information, I´m really looking forward into feeling so much better and without this anxiety.

    Regards, Betty

    • Karin Davidson Karin Davidson says:

      As long as you are tapping, there’s really no “best way” Extra points are great but every point helps. Here’s some free videos:

    • Karin Davidson Karin Davidson says:

      The more points you use the better. And the gamut point is very important, so don’t leave that one out. (fingers can be all tapped by tapping the wrists together back of one wrist to the front of the other if you don’t want to go through all the fingers)

  2. Sarah says:

    Thank you so much for this great article. Just what I needed to improve on my tapping.

  3. katie says:

    Thanks for the awesome article Karin. I am a total newbie at tapping and also very rigid in my thinking (autistic trait). So when you say “tap one aspect only” and “tap on everything” my mind explodes. Do you mean you can tap about more than one issue in a day (eg over-eating and being constantly annoyed), but for each issue, break it down and deal with only one aspect of the issue at a time (ie. overeating = comfort, then habit, then self-sabotage; annoyance = feeling out of control, then stress, then whatever the next aspect is around that issue). I hope this makes sense!

    • Karin Davidson Karin Davidson says:

      The second is correct. You can tap on any issue but one issue at a time and one aspect of that issue at a time. so you are correct (ie. overeating = comfort, then habit, then self-sabotage; annoyance = feeling out of control, then stress, then whatever the next aspect is around that issue)

  4. katie says:

    How many times a day do you recommend tapping and how long should you tap for? So I am starting to tap re overeating. Do I tap about it once a day? Or when I feel like I want to eat? Should I keep tapping on it until my eating habits are healthy and I feel that there is something more important that needs to be tapped on (I assume this may take months / years to resolve as I took years to get this way).

    • Karin Davidson Karin Davidson says:

      Tapping when you feel like you want to eat is very good. Tap on each emotion one at a time that you feel is connected to what you feel when you want to eat. You can tap as many times a day that you want. Tap until the aspect you are tapping on reaches a zero. If it doesn’t get to a zero, it means there is another aspect in the way so you may have to do that one first and go back to the first one. this is why it’s a good idea to take notes. also as you tap, events in your past might come to memory. Write those down and then do the Movie Technique/Tell the Story technique on those. You can find that at

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