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EFT Essentials

Using EFT For ...

How to use EFT to Relieve Anxiety Before a Medical Procedure

EFT for the Highly Sensitive Temperament


By Mary Bigler

Even though I have undergone several routine colonoscopies, it is still a procedure that causes me considerable anxiety, especially with the prep phase.

I identified numerous aspects and tapped down many of them the week before the procedure, starting with the anxiety around what feels like an enormous amount of fluid to consume in a short period of time. I rated the SUD level of intensity number at about a 7-8 out of 10.

My EFT Setup Statements for tapping the Karate Chop point were:

Even though I’m afraid I’ll have trouble drinking the 16 cups of prep as prescribed, I accept myself and how I feel about this procedure.

Even though I’ve done this before and still have unresolved anxiety about drinking so much fluid in such a short period of time, I accept where I am with this fear.

Even though it feels daunting to drink what feels to be an enormous amount of fluid in less than 4 hours, and this fear is showing up as an unsettled, queasy stomach, I accept how I feel and would like to remain calm and relaxed throughout the prep phase.

Reminder Phrases:

EB: I’m anxious about drinking 12 cups of fluid in 4 hours or less

SE: That’s SO much liquid in a short period of time

UE: I have to drink even more fluids to remain hydrated

UN: That’s just SO much liquid

CH: far more than I drink normally each day

CB: It makes me anxious to even think about drinking all that liquid

UA: in such a small window of time

TH: That feels so daunting

EB: I’m anxious about drinking 8 ounces each 15-20 minutes the first day

SE: That is so much for my gut to process

UE: What if I throw it up?

UN: I’ve done that in the past

CH: and I’m afraid it might happen again

CB: What if I have trouble consuming all this fluid in the prescribed time

UA: and it doesn’t work properly?

TH: What if I can choose to remain a little more calm and relaxed as I prepare for this procedure?

After that tapping, my SUD level was down to about a 4.

I chose to tap down another closely related aspect about the prep not working if I threw it up and I’d need a do-over, feeling the anxiety as queasiness in my gut. The SUD level was 8-9.

Setup on Karate Chop:

Even though I’m feeling anxious about getting sick on the prep and I feel it as queasy in my gut, I accept how I feel about all this.

Even though I feel queasy at the thought of the prep not working properly if I throw it up, I acknowledge my ability to have gone through this several times already.

Even though I’m still anxious about this procedure not working if I get sick and the thought of a do-over is showing up as queasiness in my gut, I love and honor my feelings.

Reminder Phrases:

EB: Feeling this anxiety in my gut

SE: Feeling queasy at the thought of the prep not working as it should

UE: and I have to reschedule a do-over

UN: That’s a WORSE feeling that the thought of consuming all that liquid so quickly

CH: to go through the highly uncomfortable prep phase

CB: and have to do it all over if it doesn’t work

UA: What if I can use my tapping knowledge and experience to calm my mind and relax my gut

TH: And have an easier and successful prep phase?

A couple more rounds and my SUD score was a 2-3.

For the sake of brevity, I’ll sum up the other aspects I identified and tapped on: just looking at the bottle of prep solution, the physical discomforts that accompany this procedure, not knowing the doctors, fears related to anesthesia, potential medical complications, and getting up at 3 a.m. to complete the prep.

I also tapped in some positives, such as I have done this several times before and though uncomfortable, I was okay a few hours after the procedure. I spoke with a nurse and received a diet that would likely make the whole prep easier. I was given a little leeway on how often I was to consume the liquid. I increased light exercise in the days before the procedure.

I tapped each time I drank anything during the week before the procedure, then with each cup of prep, I would thank my body/gut for relaxing and accepting the fluid with ease. I tapped frequently on appreciating and trusting my body’s innate ability to process this fluid completely and safely.

I also reminded myself this was only once every 5 years, potentially a lifesaving procedure and worth a small amount of discomfort.

The result of this was that the colonoscopy this time proved to be the easiest procedure I’ve ever undergone. I was able to consume the fluids as prescribed with only very mild discomfort, I wasn’t overly hungry as in the past, and I did not experience any adverse effects from the medications prior to the procedure.

Even though I’ve been tapping for several years, I have to admit I was surprised at how much easier this whole process turned out.