Tapping has been an invaluable go-to resource not only in my life, but for my clients inside Mom Goes On too.
Join me to discover how tapping can support you through grief grenades and other intense emotional experiences, and what to expect as you start implementing this practice in your life.
Welcome to The Widowed Mom Podcast, episode 159, Grief Support with EFT Tapping part two. In part two of this two part series I’ll be teaching you how to use the basic tapping recipe so you can support yourself through grief grenades and other intense emotional experiences in grief. And using tapping you can create calm in your nervous system and go from feeling unsafe to safe. Ready? Let’s go.
Welcome to The Widowed Mom Podcast, the only podcast that offers a proven process to help you work through your grief, to grow, evolve, and create a future you can truly look forward to. Here’s your host, Master Certified life coach, grief expert, widow, and mom, Krista St. Germain.
Hey there, welcome to another episode of the podcast. So, thanks to those of you who took time to send your well wishes to my stepmom who was dealing with COVID. When I recorded the last podcast episode she was on day eight and thankfully at day 10 she really did start doing a lot better. So, I was quite worried and really appreciate all the love that you sent. And then also really excited to announce the advanced coach certification that I’m putting together for Life Coach School coaches who want to become confident coaching grief and posttraumatic growth.
It really breaks my heart when I see people tiptoeing around grief because what I know is that that means their clients are not getting the support that they could be getting. And I get it because when I started coaching grief, it did feel a little scary to me too. But there’s no reason that you can’t if you are a Life Coach School certified coach, that you can’t feel completely confident coaching on the scary things. And so, it was nice to receive such an interest in the certification.
And if you would like to have your name added to the interest list so that you are kept up-to-date as the certification unfolds then just email us at email@example.com and tell us you want us to add you to the interest list and you won’t miss anything. And then a couple of other things.
One, I know that Father’s Day is coming. I’m not doing an episode of the podcast on Father’s Day this year. But I want to point you back towards episode 54, Navigating Father’s Day if that’s something you’re finding challenging for you this year. And I also want to remind you that if you are starting to be bombarded with Father’s Day emails it’s okay to unsubscribe. And many companies now are offering opt-out options when it comes to Father’s Day and Mother’s Day promotions.
So, if that applies to you there is no shame in opting out so that you don’t have to have grief triggers around Father’s Day. And also, if you’re feeling like you need some support then please go check out episode 54 about how to navigate Father’s Day. And I hope that is useful to you.
And then the last thing I want to tell you is that while I haven’t chosen a particular date there is a price increase coming for Mom Goes On. I haven’t increased the price since September of 2020 and the program has grown. I’ve grown. It’s better. And it’s coming soon. So, if you’ve been on the fence I just want to give you that little nudge now that you consider joining before the price goes up because I know it’s coming.
Okay, so let’s get into part two of this series on emotional freedom technique and tapping. Now, if you have not listened to part one please stop here and go back and listen to part one. Part two will make so much more sense to you if you listen to part one first. So please stop this and go listen to part one. But assuming you’ve already listened to it, remember that I told you tapping can be used for many reasons. In Mom Goes On, my coaching program, we use it for three main reasons.
We use it to support ourselves when our emotions feel intense. We use it to shift beliefs. And we use it to reduce our resistance to doing the work that we want to do. But it can be used for many other things. You can hire tapping coaches. You can use, there are tapping apps.
The Tapping Solution is an app that I have used in the past. Unfortunately, it’s no longer free. It used to be free and then there was an upgrade inside of it. Now you actually, if you download the app you get a 14 day free trial which I still recommend because I think it’s a great way to learn about tapping. And it’s a great way to try out the app and see if it’s something that you want to pay for. I personally pay for it. Actually, I haven’t used it in a while but I do like having the comfort of knowing that I don’t have to think sometimes. I can just press play and follow along.
And they do have a lot of different exercises in the Tapping Solution app that I think are valuable. So that’s an option too. You can also find so many tutorials out there on the inter-webs. YouTube has a ton of them, I’m starting to see them on TikTok. So, you can look for those and they’re free. This is not something that you necessarily have to pay for. Although I think that you can and depending on your interest level in it and how deep you want to go.
If you really want to use it as a tool for trauma healing then you probably do want to pay someone to help you which is not how we use it inside of Mom Goes On. We don’t offer it as a one-on-one experience inside of Mom Goes On, maybe some day we will. But we use it primarily to handle intense emotions, shift beliefs and then reduce resistance. So okay, I’m going to teach you how to use tapping and what is called the basic recipe. And it’s super simple. It is weird in the beginning. So please just let it be weird.
I’m going to explain the tapping points and then I’m going to guide you through one tapping exercise so that you can get the feel for what it’s like. So, you definitely don’t want to be driving or doing anything that would make closing your eyes unsafe. So, let’s go through the tapping points first, and there are nine of them that we’re going to use today. There are other tapping points that other practitioners use but to keep it simple we’re just going to focus on the basic nine tapping points.
And remember that tapping points are just acupressure points. They’re the same points on the body that if you were go get acupuncture done, you might find an acupuncture practitioner using, so just energy meridians on the body. So, the first one is called side of hand. It used to be called the karate chop point. And sometimes people still refer to it as the karate chop point because it’s easy to remember but it’s also not so appropriate. But if you can imagine someone doing a stereotypical karate chop right now, like chopping a piece of wood or a brick or something like that.
The side of the hand where their hand would strike the material that they’re chopping is where we’re tapping. And if you use multiple fingers, when I’m tapping side of hand I actually use all four fingers, to me that feels good. You don’t have to use four, you could use two or three. But if you use a couple of fingers you’re going to hit that point.
It’s really right below, if you go to the top of your pinky finger and pull your finger down towards the middle of your hand where all your fingers connect to your hand, and those joints are, it’s right below that joint on the side of your hand is where that acupressure point is. But if you use four fingers on the side of your hand or even a couple, you’re going to hit it. So, you don’t really need to worry about it. Tapping is extremely forgiving. It’s easy to start worrying that you’re going to do it wrong but I promise you, you’re not. You are not going to do it wrong.
I’m going to teach you these other points in the order that I use them but you also don’t even have to tap in the same order. Now we always will start on the side of our hand for our setup statements. But after that you can really tap through the points in whatever order feels good to you. And that has changed over the years for me. So today though we’re going to start after side of hand and we’re going to switch to the eyebrow point also called the inner eye point.
So, if you touch the side of your eyebrow closest to your nose right where that bone on the top of your nose touches your eyebrow, that’s where we’re tapping. I will typically use two fingers when I tap there. It feels good to me to tap with my middle finger and my ring finger. Sometimes people prefer their index finger and their middle finger. You could tap with three fingers. You could tap with four fingers. Whatever feels right to you. So that’s the eyebrow point or inner eye point.
And then the side of the eye, if you touch right on the outside of your eye, not your temple but right near the bone on the outside of your eye, can you feel that bony part that’s right on the outside of your eye? Kind of it’s actually quite close to your eye. That’s where we’re tapping. For me I usually tap with my index and middle finger on that particular point. But again, whatever feels good to you. So that’s side of eye.
And then under eye, if you touch underneath your eye and you’ll feel a bone, right there on that bone very close to your eye. You could almost touch your eyelashes we’re so close.
Then under the nose, it’s just as it sounds under your nose but very close to the bottom of your nose. You’re not sticking your fingers up your nose. But you’re pretty close. I usually use my index and middle fingers on that point as well.
And then under the mouth or under the lip, different people call it different things but right underneath your lower lip, it’s almost on your lower lip, it’s very close. So right underneath your mouth or your lower lip.
And then collarbone, if you touch your collarbone and then pull away from the center of your body about an inch and you’ll feel kind of the spot, for me it’s – most people listening to this podcast are women, so it’s right about where your bra strap hits you, it’s kind of down an inch and out an inch and right where your bra strap is, is the collarbone point.
Then under your arm, again using your bra as a reference is basically on the side of your body right in the middle of your bra, kind of that midline of your breastbone right under your arm. You kind of look like a monkey when you’re tapping that side. So usually, I will use the opposite hand and tap.
And then the last point is top of your head. It’s as simple as it sounds, the middle of the top of your head. Just tap on the top of your head.
Now, people ask, should I use my left hand? Should I use my right hand? Do I use both hands? What do I do? it doesn’t matter. What feels good to you. Sometimes you might use both hands. Sometimes you will use only one hand, whatever feels right is going to be beautiful for you. Traditional, you’ll find different things in different places but five to seven taps per acupressure point are typically what I have read. However oftentimes I will stay on a point for far longer than that. And I just let my body guide me.
Sometimes certain points feel like they need my attention and I don’t know why. And it doesn’t have to make any sense but sometimes I just stay there because it feels right to stay there. So just give yourself permission to experiment with it. Don’t worry about left hand, right hand, don’t worry about how many taps. Don’t worry about how many fingers. Just try it and see how it feels.
If you find that it’s too intense to tap, the actually touching your body is too stimulating, you don’t even have to tap, just gently touch and hold those pressure points. If that’s too intense you can literally start by imagining you are touching and holding those points. And then see how it goes for you. So those are the basic tapping points. There are more but we’re just going to start with those. Really honestly those are all you need to experience tremendous benefits from tapping.
So just to review, so side of hand also called outdatedly so, the karate chop point. Always start there. Then we go to the other eight points which you can do in any order. I start at the eyebrow. I used to start at the top of the head but I start at the eyebrow now. Eyebrow or inner eye, side of eye which is the bone right on the outside of your eye. Under the eye, which is so close to the under eye, right on that bone, a little bit higher.
Under the nose which is right at the base of your nose, under the mouth or lip which is right at your bottom lip, directly underneath your mouth. Your collarbone, so you find the bone, you go out an inch, down an inch and it’s right there on your bra strap. Under the arm, is on the side of your body, right by your breastbone in the middle of your body, so also finding your bra strap and then top of head. So those are the basic points.
So now that you know the basic points how we tap and today we’re going to tap to lower the intensity of an emotion. But how we tap is that first we always rate the intensity of our current problem using a scale of zero to ten with ten being the most. This is called a SUD rating. And SUD, S-U-D stands for Subjective Units of Distress. So basically, how awful is it in our own opinion? That’s basically what we’re rating. How intense is it in our own rating? So, zero to ten with ten being the most, write that number down.
And today we’re going to do overwhelm. So maybe you’re feeling overwhelmed and you know that you’re feeling overwhelmed and you just ask yourself, how intense is my overwhelm right now? With ten being the most intense overwhelm could ever be for me or has ever been for me, where am I? Am I at a seven? Am I at a nine? Am I at a ten? It’s probably going to be a higher number if that’s the reason we’re coming to tapping. Now, for you right now you might not be feeling that overwhelmed. And that’s totally okay. So maybe you’re at a one, or a two, or a three. It’s fine, whatever it is you write it down.
I also recommend that you write down the primary emotion that you’re feeling, that you have just rated. So, the name of the emotion and the Subjective Units of Distress number. So, you would write maybe overwhelm and seven. And we do this because we have a tendency to forget, honestly. You won’t remember if you don’t do it. And that’s not an insult to you, it’s just the way it tends to go with tapping. It’s much easier to kind of track our progress if we write it down. And sometimes when we do the first round the emotion will actually get more intense.
Sometimes there’s a worse before better experience that we have. And that’s okay. Persistence is key. We just want to keep tapping until that number lowers. So, we’re going to go through the tapping points until we get down to the lowest number possible. And you get to be the boss of when you stop. But I probably wouldn’t move on until I was at least at a two, I’d probably keep going. And that can usually be done within, for me 10 minutes, not a problem, most emotions I can get down that low.
So, once we have written down the emotion that we’re going to be tapping on, we have rated it using the Subjective Units of Distress or SUD’s rating, zero to ten, ten is the highest. Then we always start on the side of hand with a setup statement. And we will say that setup statement three times. And I’m going to guide you through it. There are two parts to a setup statement. And these will be counterintuitive.
So, the first part is that we state the problem, whatever our current truth is. And we’re not trying to cement this truth, we’re not trying to lock it in, we’re just being honest about it. And so that will go something like, even though I feel overwhelmed, because that’s the truth. Even though I feel sad, because that’s the truth. Even though I’m not sure if I’ll ever be happy again, because that’s the truth. Whatever feels true that you have decided to work on you will state it simply.
Alright, so first part of the setup statement is the problem or the current truth. And so, for today’s purposes we’re going to use even though I feel overwhelmed. And the second part of that setup statement will be an accepting statement that feels true and kind of makes you feel grounded or safe, but it has to feel true. So, I’m going to give you some options for acceptance statements. And different statements work for different people. And sometimes different statements will work for you depending on what you’re tapping on.
So, you’ve just got to give yourself permission to try them on like clothing and see what feels good to you. So, a couple of options for that are I deeply and completely love and accept myself. But that has to feel true to you to say it, I deeply and completely love and accept myself. Or it’s okay for me to feel this way. Or it’s okay for me to love and accept myself. Or this is the truth of how I feel. Or maybe right here and right now I’m safe. So, we’re being honest in part one, even though I feel overwhelmed.
And then we’re saying something that kind of grounds us in part two, right here and right now I’m safe. Even though I feel overwhelmed it’s okay for me to love and accept myself. Even though I feel overwhelmed, this is the truth of how I feel. Even though I feel overwhelmed it’s okay for me to feel this way. So that second part of the setup statement is very personalized. And I want you to give yourself permission to pick what feels honest, and true, and grounding and safe to you.
So, if you think I deeply and completely love and accept myself and your body rejects that, it doesn’t feel right to you, it doesn’t feel honest or true, that’s not the setup statement that we want to use for you. So, for today’s purposes we’re going to use, even though I feel overwhelmed it’s okay for me to love and accept myself. I’m taking some liberties because I don’t know if that feels good to you but just for the purpose of you learning the tool, that’s what we’re going to go with. So that’s the setup statement, even though I feel, state the problem.
It’s okay for me to love and accept myself, or right here and right now I’m safe, or this is the truth of how I feel. But some sort of acceptance statement that is grounding, makes you feel safe. And we would do that three times as we are tapping on the side of our hand. When you are tapping, if you want to verbalize out loud these phrases you can. If you’re in public or if it doesn’t feel right to you to verbalize them out loud and you just want to say them in your mind, that’s fine too. It does not matter. It will be helpful either way. So, you get to choose.
So, if I am at home by myself and nobody’s staring at me, I’m going to say it out loud. If I am, like I remember last year I was sitting in the doctor’s office and I had to have a special mammogram done because they were a little worried and I was feeling anxious about the results. And I just sat there in the doctor’s office and tapped through the points and I didn’t say anything, I just tapped. And I will do that on a regular basis if I am in a situation and I am feeling stressed, and I want to ground myself, I will tap inconspicuously, sometimes under a table.
And I will just tap on the side of my hand. I don’t even go through all the points. I’ll just tap on the side of my hand, or I will tap on the collarbone very discretely. You can also rub on that point on the collarbone. If you feel around you’ll notice there’s a sore spot on your chest right near your collarbone. That can be a place that you can rub with no one really noticing, that can help you calm yourself down and create that calm and peace in your nervous system that we’re looking for here.
Okay, so that’s the setup statement, side of hand, two parts, even though I feel, state your truth and a grounding statement. It’s okay for me to love and accept myself. Then we just tap through the points and as we tap through the points we can just use one simple reminder phrase. You can vary it later. You can get fancy later if you want. You really can’t mess this up. But for today we’re just going to use one simple reminder phrase. So, are you ready?
My suggestion is that you get comfortable in a chair. And you decide, does it feel safe to close my eyes? Do I want to close my eyes? And if the answer is yes, close your eyes. If it doesn’t, just look somewhere and kind of soften your gaze. Pick a spot in the room to just kind of blank out on. Again, you can’t do this wrong. If it doesn’t feel safe to close your eyes, don’t close your eyes. If it feels good to you to close to your eyes, close them. Trust yourself. So, let’s do this.
So, I want you to just for a moment check in with your body. And we’re specifically looking for overwhelm. And I picked overwhelm because it’s such a common experience that we have. Maybe you’re having it right now, maybe you’re not. But just rate the intensity of the overwhelm that you feel using the SUDs of zero to ten with ten being the most. And then write that number down. And it doesn’t matter where we start, we’re just going to write the number down.
It’s totally okay if you’re not feeling any overwhelm right now, we’re just going to use this as an opportunity to learn the basic recipe of tapping. Okay. So, starting on the side of hand just gently start tapping the side of your hand. And you’ll keep tapping the whole time. And you can repeat after me out loud if you want or just in your mind. And if you need to alter the setup statement because what I say doesn’t feel right to you, then alter it. So, side of hand. Even though I feel overwhelmed, it’s okay for me to love and accept myself.
Even though I feel overwhelmed, it’s okay for me to love and accept myself. Even though I feel overwhelmed, it’s okay for me to love and accept myself. Moving to the eyebrow point or the inner eye point, all this overwhelm. Side of the eye, all this overwhelm. Under the eye, all this overwhelm. Under the nose, all this overwhelm. Under the mouth, all this overwhelm. Collarbone, all this overwhelm. Under the arm, all this overwhelm. Top of the head, all this overwhelm.
And you can gently stop tapping, take a breath in and blow it out. And now we check back in with our body and we look for that overwhelm. And using that same scale of zero to ten, how intense is it now? What number would you give it? Now, we only did one round. Tapping is all about persistence. Nothing has gone wrong if the number got higher. It just means we’re not done yet and we go right back to it. Keep going until you feel better. You’ll know. You will feel like you lost emotional weight. You will feel like you can breathe again and think again if it was intense when you started.
And sometimes it’s like peeling the layers of an onion. You might start tapping and you’re mad and then you get more mad as you’re tapping. And then all of a sudden the madness shifts and you feel sad. And it’s fascinating. And nothing has gone wrong when different emotions show themselves. It’s just emotions that are there for us to be processed. No big deal. We just follow them. And you can write them down again. So, you can go, “Okay, so I notice that I no longer feel overwhelmed but maybe now I feel something else. Now I feel lonely.”
And so, I can start tapping on loneliness. And let it shift, and ebb, and flow, and move through you. So that’s all we’re going to do in today’s exercise. Inside of Mom Goes On, what I would usually do next is a part two, meaning I would use part one which is what we just did as a chance to lower the intensity of the negative emotion. And I would do that until it’s at least a two or lower on the SUD scale. Then I would move into a part two which is where we shift towards the positive. We’re going to hold off on that today because I just want you to get good at the basic recipe.
So, I want you to know though that once you do part one and the intensity of that emotion is lowered then we can also switch to cementing the positive. And we’re not going to do that today. So that’s how it’s done. It’s really that simple. Give it a shot. Try it out, see how you do with it. You could use it for, maybe you just have a sudden grief grenade and all of a sudden you just feel overwhelmed. Maybe you are feeling lonely. Maybe you are feeling stressed. Maybe you are feeling sad. It doesn’t matter.
Whatever the emotion is that’s intense, maybe, sometimes when I’m mad at my kids or something has happened, before I respond because I know I’m going to respond from anger, I will give myself a pause and I will go and tap. Maybe it’s just let it go. You can use it as you see fit and give yourself permission to play with it. Don’t buy into any story that you’re going to do it wrong because you’re not. And just give yourself permission to experiment and see how it works for you, okay?
Okay, so I hope this is really useful to you. I want you to have this tool in your toolbelt, it is one of my primary go to’s when I need to support myself and it’s not even just with grief. It’s amazing in grief but also in all the other areas of just being a human. It’s so good. Okay, that’s what I have for you this week. Remember, whatever you’ve got going on, truly, I love you. And you’ve got this. Alright, take care and I’ll see you next week. Bye bye.
If you like what you’ve been hearing on this podcast and want to create a future you can truly get excited about after the loss of your spouse, I invite you to join my Mom Goes On coaching program. It’s small group coaching just for widowed moms like you where I’ll help you figure out what’s holding you back and give you the tools and support you need so that you can move forward with confidence.
Please don’t settle for a new normal that’s less than you deserve. Go to coachingwithkrista.com and click work with me for details and the next steps. I can’t wait to meet you.