Our problems are like onions! They have many layers! Yes... so far, so cliche.
But in tapping, those layers take on particular significance.
It can seem like we're not making progress with an issue, like the tapping's not working or you can't find the right words. And then right in that moment, a thought or a memory pops up that feels really charged. You tap on that memory, and the whole issue suddenly feels much more clear. Have you ever had this experience?
Actually, it's very common that when we find one of those unexplored layers - what in EFT we'd call an aspect of a particular problem - the whole issue starts to shift, or even disappears completely.
A happy bonus of this approach is that you don't necessarily have to 'go through' all the surrounding layers (or aspects) of an issue in order to find the one that really needs your attention. With careful use of your intuition and focus, you can move straight to the aspect you need to work with in that moment.
So how do you discover all the layers of an issue? Our problems often feel so large and complex that it can be daunting to even start. That's why in my practice I use a tool to help people map out all the different parts of an issue. It's called the Core Questions.
This is a set of really powerful, probing questions, which help you dig deep into the formation of an issue and all its contributing factors. These are questions to sit with, to reflect on, so take time with each one. Close your eyes, and feel what's happening in your body. Begin tapping, 'tune into' the main issue that you're looking at in that moment, and then begin to answer these questions one by one, tapping the whole time. It can be very helpful to write down your answers. When you finish, you'll have a comprehensive map of your issue.
You can then approach the issue methodically, beginning with the specific areas where you feel the highest intensity. Tap on each aspect until the charge is around a two or lower. Being thorough gives big rewards here, so resist the urge to skip to the next aspect as soon as you feel some relief. See it through, so you don't have to come back to it later.
Here we go...
The Core Questions
1) What is your issue?
2) How long has this been affecting you?
3) What are the emotions associated with it?
4) Where do you feel these in your body? What do they feel like?
5) What is your earliest memory of feeling the same way?
6) What did you need? What do you need now?
7) What limiting beliefs have you created as a result of this issue? (e.g. ‘I’m not worthy’, ‘I always fail’, or ‘I’ll never be good enough.”) How old were you when you started believing this?
8) Who do you hold responsible for this issue?
9) Who in your family or early life modeled similar attitudes or feelings?
10) What does your culture say about this? (Country, community, generation, friends, school, religion, race, gender)
11) What benefits are you getting by holding on to this? (Are you punishing someone? Are you trying to prove something? Are you protecting yourself?)
12) If you didn’t have this issue, how would you be feeling and living your life?
13) What new conscious beliefs would you like to create? (e.g. ‘I’m perfect as I am’, ‘I am free now’, ‘the universe loves me’)
* Rate the intensity of your issue on a scale from zero to ten (ten is most intense, zero is least), then rate the intensity of each of your answers.
And if you need some light relief after all that deep core work, allow me to suggest this little number from Flight of the Conchords.