If you’re familiar with bodywork and massage, you know first-hand that the benefits of human touch are immeasurable. Let us explore how touch-based therapies like EFT help in cancer healing.
Touch-based therapies for cancer healing
For those who are battling or recovering from cancer, touch-based therapies provide a gentle, healing, positive experience – a welcome change from being poked and prodded in a clinical setting. For cancer patients whose treatments have left them with changed physical capabilities, or an altered appearance, touch-based therapies can do wonders to restore self-esteem and a feeling of harmony within.
Yet, many body-workers wonder how they can help clients extend these positive effects once they’ve left the massage table. Cancer patients can take the healing power of touch home with them when they learn the simple process behind Emotional Freedom Technique (EFT.)
What is EFT?
Emotional Freedom Technique is the invention of Gary Craig. Promoted as an addition to the “energy psychology” field, it uses tapping on selected acupuncture points and positive affirmations to de-sensitize people to emotionally charged stimuli, or triggers for undesirable behaviors such as over-eating, smoking, etc. Body-workers trained in the technique can easily share the method, or “recipe” as users call it, with clients, as the entire sequence takes less than few minutes.
EFT uses acupuncture points to release blocked energy throughout the body. This same energy is thought to create emotional blocks as well.
Although many practitioners of Traditional Chinese Medicine debate the legitimacy of using acu-points in a regimented sequence, this is probably due to the large number of EFT practitioners who have no prior training in point location. Thus, body-workers with a background in meridien-based therapies are uniquely qualified to teach clients correctly and this attains better-than- average results from EFT.
Several of the points used are indeed indicated for what the Chinese refer to as “harmonizing the shen, or spirit” which explains the sometimes instant sense of relief reported by recipients. During an EFT treatment, a client is taught to tap these points in a specific sequence to dismantle the negative energy of the emotions they’re experiencing.
A key component of any EFT treatment is the use of a ‘affirmation mantra’ that operates at two levels
- It emphasizes gentle self-acceptance and the conditions that have created one’s life so far.
- It affirms unconditional love for oneself.
Even skeptics of EFT cannot argue the merit of these powerful affirmations. Often, these deceptively simple sentiments (self-acceptance and self-love) have been missing from people’s lives, and bringing them into awareness can be profoundly healing.
Why EFT Resonates With Cancer Patients
Many cancer patients feel a sense of betrayal when they receive their diagnosis.
- The body they have relied upon since birth seems to be turning against them.
- For some, their trust in their work conditions and environment has been violated (e.g. with mesothelioma, a lung cancer that often results from exposure to environmental toxins.)
- Many people also deal with the fear that comes with a cancer prognosis and its typically short life expectancy.
Patients must search out ways to come to terms with their circumstances if they are to maximize their opportunities to recover, or live well, simply because years of therapy are not feasible. A resolution must come quickly, and that is the unique gift offered by EFT.
Incorporating this easy-to-use, exceptionally safe modality into your practice allows you to empower your clients with a healing tool they can use any time, any place. Nothing is quicker at dispelling emotions commonly experienced by cancer patients – such as grief, fear, sadness, and anger – and replacing them with acceptance and a sense of compassion.
- Accepting the cancer diagnosis is extremely difficult but it is the first step towards healing. What steps can you take to mentally accept and thriver with cancer?
- How can you integrate touch-based systems like EFT to release the negative emotions and awaken a positive mindset?
Melanie Bowen is an advocate for natural health and cancer cure initiatives. After graduating with a bachelor’s degree in English with a specialty in Psychology and Medical Research, she highlights the great benefits of different nutritional, emotional, and physical treatments on those with illnesses. (To read her blog, click here.)