(Including War, Accidents, Rape, Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) and all past abuses.) This section is in stark contrast to all conventional approaches. In it we lump a nearly endless list of emotional problems into one category (traumatic memories) and handle them all as if they were identical. In fact, they are identical because they all have the same cause…a disruption in the body’s energy system.
Traumatic memories generate a wide variety of
emotional reactions when people recall them. Some
become very intense. They get headaches or stomach
aches. Their hearts pound. They sweat. They cry.
They may have sexual dysfunction, nightmares, grief,
anger, depression and any number of other emotional
and physical problems.
Let’s begin by applying what you learned earlier.
Please recall the discovery statement upon which EFT
is built: “The cause of all negative emotions is a
disruption in the body’s energy system.”
Thus every negative emotion you have regarding a
traumatic memory is caused by a “zzzzzt” in your
energy system. That means the solution to your
problem is conceptually very easy. Just eliminate the”zzzzzt” and the emotional impact will fade to zero. No
more nightmares. No more headaches. No more
pounding heart. No more problems whatsoever. You
will still have the memory, of course. But that is all.
The emotional charge will be neutralized.
Our tool for this, of course, is The Basic Recipe. A
few trips through it should give relief. How many trips
you need, however, depends on how many aspects there
are to the memory.
Aspects are important. Aspects, as you recall, are
different parts of the memory that contribute to your
Most traumatic memories have only one main
aspect. Thus 1 to 3 brief trips through The Basic
Recipe will usually suffice. You will be rid of the
problem in a matter of minutes and, in most cases, it
will never return.
Some traumatic memories, though, have several
aspects. They require more time because more trips
through The Basic Recipe are needed. But even if extra
trips are necessary, we are usually only talking minutes
here. Maybe 20 or 30 minutes instead of 5 or 6.
What we need, obviously, is a way to locate these
aspects. Once located, it is a simple matter to address
them one by one until every aspect of the memory has
been neutralized. We can do this rather effic iently by
using the “short movie in your mind” concept.
A short movie in your mind. Consider a traumatic
memory as a short movie that runs in the theater of your
mind. There is a beginning. There are main characters
and events. And there is an end.
Usually, the “movie” plays in a flash and ends in a
familiar unwanted emotion. Because the movie plays
so fast, we are unaware that it may have different
aspects that are contributing to the negative emotion. It
seems to come from the movie as a whole.
If we could run the movie in slow motion, the
different aspects could be located and then addressed.
So that is what we do. We run the movie in slow
Narrate the movie. The best way to do that is to
narrate the movie OUT LOUD. Tell it to a friend, or a
mirror or a tape recorder. And, most importantly, tell it
in detail. This automatically slows the movie down
because words are much slower than thoughts.
As you tell it in detail, each aspect will make itself
known to you. Stop as soon as you feel any intensity
(remember, we minimize pain here) and perform The
Basic Recipe on it as though it was a separate traumatic
memory. Actually, it is a separate traumatic memory.
It just got lost within a larger movie.
Then continue through the aspects, brin ging each to
zero, until you can tell the whole story with no negative
emotional impact whatsoever.
As stated, most traumatic memories only have one
aspect. Others have 2 or 3. Rarely is there more than 3
but it could happen. If so, be persistent. Relief is not
Questions and Answers
Q. What do I do if I have several traumatic
Address them one at a time. Take your
most intense memory first and bring it to zero before
going on to the next one. Follow this pattern until all of
your traumatic memories are neutralized. In the process
of putting your traumatic memories “in the bag” you
will likely feel a freedom that may border on euphoria.
It is an incredible gift to unload useless baggage like
Some people (like war veterans) have hundreds of
traumatic memories. If you are among them, you can
expect the generalization effect to work for you. For
example, if you have one hundred traumatic memories,
you probably only need to address 10 or 15 of them.
After that, you are likely to have difficulty getting any
emotional intensity over the remaining ones. The
generalization effect will have neutralized them.
Q. Doesn’t the rapid elimination of emotional
problems “rob” someone of the importance of
exploring the problem in depth and “getting to the
bottom of it?”
Conventional methods presume that the
cause for these “deep set” emotional problems resides in
some recess of the mind which must somehow be
discovered and unraveled. To do otherwise is to”cheat” the client and leave the problem unresolved.
EFT ignores this idea totally.
I have helped hundreds of people with traumatic
memories…some of them extraordinarily intense. After
using EFT, not one person….ever….has shown any
interest in exploring it further or “getting to the bottom
To them, it is completely resolved and they are
In my experience, EFT does get to the bottom of the
issue and does so very powerfully. People’s attitudes
change almost instantly about the memory. They talk
about it differently. Their words shift from fear to
understanding. Their demeanor and posture evidence adramatically shifted disposition about the memory.
They don’t even bring it up any more because it has
been put in perspective. All this happens when EFT
removes the offending “zzzzzt” from the energy system.
That’s because the “zzzzzt” is the true cause.