One of the questions on my EFT (Emotional Freedom Techniques) client intake form asks “Are you on any medication?” Many of my clients can easily list several forms of medication they are taking; ranging from blood pressure pills, to diuretics, to painkillers, to anti-depressants. These medications are managing the current symptoms, but they are not resolving the underlying emotional issues - which could well have triggered the illness in the first place. Moreover, if these issues are not dealt with, will there ever be an opportunity for healing at a core level?

That said, I fully appreciate that medical treatment can play a vital role in the healing journey. If a client is taking medication, I emphasise EFT is not intended to be used as a replacement for medical treatment, but can be used in conjunction. It has been my experience in certain cases, however, that as underlying emotional issues are cleared, the medication level can be reduced under the guidance of the medical doctor.

Despite the thorough examination and questions, which lead to the medication being prescribed, the question of why the person became ill in the first place is rarely considered. There may be events in her life; repressed emotions, or strong beliefs, which have contributed to her physical deterioration. Our bodies are incredibly resilient and robust, so what causes them to stop functioning at this dynamic level? Why do some people become seriously ill when stretched to the limit, while others continue functioning comfortably and effortlessly?

When I was diagnosed with Chronic Fatigue Syndrome (CFS) in 2003, my doctor didn’t ask what was going on in my life at that time. He didn’t know I was stressed and exhausted from work, or that I was grieving the loss of my aunt, who had died unexpectedly, or that I was deeply unfulfilled in my marriage. He did offer me anti-depressants and sleeping pills though. Perhaps this was his way of dealing with whatever had caused my illness. At that time, I was so relieved to be given a ‘label’ finally, some official recognition I was ill, that I wasn’t concerning myself with what might have caused the illness.

The euphoria was short lived however, and when I started to contemplate how ill I really was, and the changes I would need to make in my life, the anti-depressants and sleeping pills appeared appealing. In spite of this, I understood my body and mind enough to know this medication would be a temporary crutch and it wasn’t the answer. I needed to look deeper.

It didn’t take me long to realise I had pushed myself too hard in all areas of my life and expected too much of myself. I’d always been a very driven person who enjoyed a challenge, and yes, I am a perfectionist into the mix! Perhaps my body was able to function at a high level at one time, but when my marriage became so uncertain and I felt a complete loss of control in my work and personal life, it was enough to tip the balance. These stressors took their toll on my body once and for all.

On my website, I write that when I was introduced to EFT (Emotional Freedom Techniques) “it was the ray of hope I was so desperately searching for.” That is because by using the technique, in a very gentle, yet powerful way, I was able to start addressing the reasons behind my serious illness and experience permanent relief as a result – both physically and emotionally. Reducing the chronic pain, digestive disorders and brain fog was like a gift from God; dissolving the fears, resentment, loneliness, and regaining control, was liberating and empowering. I felt like a lighter version of my former self.

When a new seriously ill client comes to see me, one of the first questions I ask is:
“What was happening in your life before or during the time you became ill?”

I’m looking for stressors such as uncertainty, loss of control, and fear, which could have affected the balance in their lives enough to make them ill.

They usually answer, “I can tell you exactly what was happening at that time…” They recall specific events such as the death of a loved one, financial stress, relationship difficulties, or the loss of a job. These are enormously challenging and potentially highly stressful events. How we respond to them determines the impact they have on our bodies.

Together we then use EFT on how the client feels about the event: the negative emotions, beliefs and memories that she is holding about that specific time. Once these are cleared – and there might be many layers involved – she can reflect back with a comfortable level of acceptance about what happened, and focus on how she will move forward. The beliefs and emotions pertaining to that specific time could be well-established patterns; they are usually emotionally and physically debilitating. There is only so much stress the body can take, only so much support the adrenals can give.

In my experience of using EFT for serious illness, it appears that once the intricate layers of emotional stressors are addressed, cleared and neutralized, the body is free to start healing itself. That is when we start to notice the physical symptoms, such as digestive disorders, chronic pain, exhaustion, or sleep disturbances, are reducing and disappearing.

Many of the seriously ill clients I work with are very driven. They have expected a lot from themselves and often have been self-critical, striving for perfection in all areas of their lives. Most significantly, it has been challenging for them to say “no” to others and their lives have been about giving and pushing themselves to the limit. When I hear their stories, I empathise because I, too, once functioned on that level. As a teacher, I gave unconditionally, as a wife, I gave unconditionally, and as a person, I didn’t know when to say, “No, I don’t want to do that”. I wasn’t aware of boundaries and truly believed it was right that others came before me.

The joy of EFT (Emotional Freedom Techniques) is that the technique doesn’t only clear emotions and limiting beliefs about past events, which may have caused us to become ill. But, we can also use EFT to clear limiting self-beliefs about who we are and what we expect of ourselves now; beliefs which could be preventing us from healing at a core level and reaching our fullest potential. With EFT as an accessible tool, we no longer need to feel a loss of control about our present or our future.

Author's Bio: 

Annabel Fisher was introduced to EFT when seriously ill with M.E. (Chronic Fatigue Syndrome). She was wheel chair bound, completely exhausted and in constant muscle and joint pain. She began using it regularly and had reduced her chronic pain by 60% in 4 months and by 100% within 6 months. Feeling passionate about EFT, it seemed a natural step to qualify as an EFT Practitioner and later as an EFT Trainer, drawing on her teaching background. She now combines EFT and Neuro Linguistic Programming (NLP), and Progressive Emotional Release (Pro-ER) in her practice, seeing clients privately and working over the phone. She has facilitated EFT workshops and teleseminars, plus training programmes which qualify individuals to become EFT Practitioners in the UK, Canada, America, and Mexico. She specialises in: * Coping with serious illness and chronic pain * Overcoming stress and overwhelm * Increasing self worth, confidence and the motivation to recover * Reaching your fullest potential * Leading EFT Workshops and Practitioner Training. Discover the power of EFT with The Essentials of EFT Guide and a one-hour EFT Q&A audio recording, all yours absolutely free by visiting or calling 1-888-206-8426 (toll free)