By Dawson Church, PhD, TRN-3
The comfort zone is a critical concept within all performance pursuits. This is the mental range in which you subconsciously believe you belong. Your comfort zone is what keeps a behavior its current level and, without properly addressing it, any improvements you might achieve may not last.
Like a thermostat that keeps a room within a comfortable temperature range, our experience fluctuates within certain comfort zones. Ironically, most comfort zones aren’t really comfortable, especially when we want to make changes. It’s more accurate to call them familiar zones.
To properly enhance one’s performance, condition, or situation, two factors should be addressed.
1. You must move the boundaries of your comfort zone, and
2. You must address the specific impediments to performance that need improvement.
Here are some examples of Setup Phrases that can help people involved in many different activities move beyond their present comfort zones. Please note that they all include a statement about the new or desired level of performance, whether it’s an improved golf score, better grades, or the person’s income. This is important in order to move mentally into a new vision of themselves.
8 Tapping Setup Statements:
Even though I’m not comfortable at the thought of golfing in the high 70s and may think I don’t belong there, I deeply and completely accept myself.
Even though I think I am capable of being an A student in math but have never been above a B yet&, I deeply and completely accept myself.
Even though the violin doesn’t dance in my hands like it does in my dreams, I deeply and completely accept myself.
Even though I have yet to earn $200,000 per year, I deeply and completely accept myself.
Even though, as a speaker, I feel uptight and have yet to have fun with my audience, I deeply and completely accept myself.
Even though I just don’t feel attractive and don’t have the same outgoing charisma as [pick a role model], I deeply and completely accept myself.
Even though I go “gulp” instead of flowing freely when I try to sing that high note in [name a song], I deeply and completely accept myself.
Even though writer’s block seems to be always with me instead of ideas flowing out of me like a fountain, I deeply and completely accept myself.
These go on endlessly and, of course, you must customize your approach to fit the situation. The idea is to move to a new mental image of yourself in which you see yourself as “belonging” at this new level.
Truly skilled EFT artists do a thorough job with their clients’ comfort zones. They dig for the specific events underlying their clients’ less-than-optimum performance levels and use EFT to obliterate these barriers.
When it comes to weight loss, your comfort zone is the weight range you usually maintain. It is easy for most people to lose a little weight, but when the weight loss goal is substantial, it’s often outside the person’s comfort zone. When that happens, self-sabotage enters the picture and the subconscious mind conspires with energy blocks, tail-enders, and negative self-talk to prevent the desired weight loss.
One way to use EFT to expand your weight-loss comfort zone is to choose a goal weight that is (as far as your mind is concerned) within the realm of possibility. Just as a golfer whose usual score is over 100 will find it hard to imagine shooting in the low 60s, someone who is 100 pounds overweight will find it hard to imagine easily reaching his or her goal weight.
But if the golfer sets a more modest goal, like shooting in the low 90s or high 80s, and if the overweight person decides to lose 20 or 30 pounds rather than 100 pounds, the subconscious mind is more likely to cooperate and less likely to generate self-sabotage. Many weight-loss success stories began with modest goals that, once achieved, led to revised and more ambitious goals. That’s why I personally started with 40 pounds knowing that I would probably need to lose more later.
6 EFT Setups that can help expand your weight-loss comfort zone include:
1. Even though I can’t imagine ever being a size 12 again, I deeply and completely accept myself.
2. Even though it’s been a long time since I weighed 150 pounds, I would like to love and forgive my body and my past food choices.
3. Even though I have yet to lose five pounds, let alone 25 or 50, I deeply and completely accept myself anyway.
4. Even though it will be easier for me to climb stairs and get the exercise I need if I lose weight, I can move forward in a new direction starting now.
5. Even though I haven’t been in a swimsuit for years, and the thought of wearing one in public is a real stretch, I would love to start swimming again.
6. Even though I’m not used to thinking of weight-loss as effortless or enjoyable, I know that with EFT, just about anything is possible.
Whenever you incorporate a goal into your EFT Setup Phrases, be on the alert for tail-enders, the “yes, but” statements that interfere with your progress. As soon as they come to mind, follow them back to specific events and the core issues they created. Becoming an EFT detective will help you quickly and efficiently clear away the mental and energy blocks that can otherwise undermine your best-laid plans.
Core issues behind weight gain and cravings are often clever about hiding, so being a good detective is an EFT asset. Finding them can be as simple as asking yourself a few good questions.
Here are 8 quesions to ask yourself:
1. What does this craving remind me of?
2. When was the first time I felt this way? And what was happening in my life at that time?
3. If there is a deeper emotion underlying this situation, what might it be?
4. Who or what is behind my weight gain?
5. If I could live my life over again, what person or event would I prefer to skip?
6. If there were a consequence for losing weight, what would it be?
7. If there were a benefit to keeping the weight, what would it be?
8. How do I feel just before I get the munchies? Exhausted, stressed, frustrated, sad, empty, angry, insecure, alone, disappointed…? And what does that feeling remind me of?
Once you have an answer to any of these questions, continue asking “Why?” or “What’s behind that?” until you find unresolved specific events.
If you can’t think of anything, you can try a few rounds of EFT on something global to remove a few emotional layers and see if anything new pops up.
Even though I have this weight issue and I don’t know what is causing it, I deeply and completely accept myself.
For Reminder Phrases, try “This weight issue” or “Whatever is causing my weight issue.”
Even though food makes me feel better and I don’t understand why, I deeply and completely accept myself.
For Reminder Phrases, try “Food makes me feel better” and/or “I wonder why.”
Even though I eat when I’m not hungry, and I know there is an emotional cause, I deeply and completely accept myself.
For Reminder Phrases try “This emotional cause” or “I’m not even hungry.”
If you’re still not able to come up with an event, memory, or connection, no problem. Just make something up. As I often say, a made-up example can work even better than an actual event or memory.
Tell yourself, “If I had to imagine an event that could contribute to my weight problem, it would go something like this…” Then use whatever event you create.
As soon as you have something, real or imaginary, that’s connected in any way to your cravings or weight gain, create a short or long Setup Phrase around it and begin tapping.
These specific events are the building blocks underneath the bigger global issues. By dealing with them one at a time, they are easier to manage, and you can monitor your progress along the way. In addition, by going all the way to the foundation of the issue, you can start releasing these building blocks one by one until the global issue collapses.
2 points about this idea deserve special attention:
1. There can be hundreds or thousands of such specific events underlying a larger issue and thus, theoretically, addressing all of them can be a tedious process. Fortunately, you do not have to address every specific event to collapse the larger issue. You can usually do the job by collapsing somewhere between five and 20 of its table legs.
This is because there is usually a commonality or “general theme” among those specific events. After EFT appropriately collapses a few of the table legs, a generalization effect occurs that serves to collapse the rest.
2. Remember that each specific event is likely to have an assortment of aspects, so address them separately and measure your progress on them one by one. Aspects can be the different emotions you felt during an event, the various emotional crescendos, or anything else that you would consider to be a “part” of your reaction to the event.
The example given in the EFT for Weight Loss book Chapter 1 of the auto accident is a good illustration. Why? Because the event probably contains many aspects such as the belief that it was all my fault; the smell of burning rubber; the sound of the crash; the smell of blood; the shock of the impact; my guilt at wrecking the car, and so on. Each of those pieces is an aspect all by itself and should be addressed separately.
To be as thorough as possible with any specific event, use the Tell-the-Story Technique until you can tell the complete story without any emotional spikes.
This article is excerpted from the book EFT for Weight Loss
By Dawson Church