Inspiration

Sneak Peek: The Tapping Solution to Create Lasting Change

Written by: Jessica Ortner

Here’s a sneak peek inside The Tapping Solution to Create Lasting Change. Enjoy chapters 1 and 2 below! 🙂

Around 5,040 days had to pass before I noticed the pattern that was keeping me stuck. That pattern, which I now call the pattern of panic, began when I was 14 years old and just starting my first diet. Before long, I was cycling through fad diets, then fad exercise routines, desperate to transform my body.

Each time, I’d follow a strict plan and lose some weight. Eventually, though, I’d get exhausted and resort to my old habit of binge eating. Standing in front of the cupboard, consuming entire boxes of “healthy” bars and nuts, I felt relieved, even empowered. I was rebelling, taking my power back from a society that seemed ashamed of me for not being a size 2.

Soon, though, my elation would turn into regret and disappointment. Feeling defeated, I’d then find a new, even better fad diet, an even more effective fat-burning exercise routine to follow.

Each time I cycled through this pattern, I told myself that if I really, really, really wanted to lose weight, then my desperation would be strong enough to make me change. I told myself that I couldn’t let up, that I had to be hard on myself. That’s what made me a smart, self-aware person. All I needed, really, was the right plan.

I soon became a self-help junkie. I read books and attended seminars, feverishly looking for someone to just tell me how to end my struggle. The more I

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focused on “fixing” myself, the more flaws I found. The more I read, the more pressure I felt to do things perfectly.

My initial struggle was with my body and self-image. Maybe you can relate, or perhaps you feel stuck when it comes to your finances, your relationship status, or your career path. When we are faced with a struggle, something we desperately want to change but isn’t, we tend to do one thing: stress!

Overwhelmed by my own stress and panic, I grew increasingly disconnected from my own body and my own intuition. Surely, I kept telling myself, someone out there had the perfect plan for me. If I just kept looking, and kept being hard on myself, I’d finally succeed at transforming my body, and then my life.

It’s what we often do when we’re stuck in the pattern of panic. We hold on to that panic, thinking that if we could criticize ourselves enough then maybe something will change. We try to hate ourselves happy. We try to stress our way to resolution without realizing that very stress is what’s keeping us stuck. We then look for solutions outside of ourselves. We search for a “fix,” when what we truly need is to go within.

This pattern is a self-perpetuating cycle that continues until we take a deeper look at why our past attempts to get unstuck either haven’t worked or haven’t proven sustainable.

Why We Stay Stuck

Let’s face it, we know when we’re stuck. Even when we hesitate to admit it, we can usually tell when we’re in a rut. We also know that making some sort of change is the only way out.

At some point we dive headfirst into making the changes we’re sure we need to make. The problem is, the changes we’re making come from a place of panic. We pile extra pressure on ourselves and become even more self-critical. As that panic continues to fuel our critical voice, we say things to ourselves like, “Get your act together, you should be further along by now, what’s wrong with you?” Then we write that list of goals, start the diet, or commit to following this or that exercise/budgeting/career/you-name-it plan.

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At first it may feel invigorating. Already we can see our lives turning around.
It’s going to be great! Then time goes by, and we begin to realize that creating
lasting change is harder than we expected. It takes time, patience, perseverance.
We get tired. We feel resentful, defeated by our lack of tangible progress. Before
long, we begin to wonder, “Is it really worth it?” Truthfully, we still feel stressed,
uncertain, and yes, panicked that we actually are as stuck as we feared.

Eventually, fatigue and exasperation win, and we revert back to old selfsabotaging
patterns. We then find ourselves back in the same cycle—feeling
stuck, then panicked, desperate for change that we can’t seem to create
or sustain.

Once we’ve navigated this frustrating cycle repeatedly, we begin to wonder
if we’ll ever get unstuck. We feel worn down, frustrated, angry. We’ve gotten
used to living in a state of controlled panic, yet we can feel its effects. That
underlying panic causes stress, continuously taxing our health, wellness, relationships,
even our work and finances.

In spite of it all, we somehow manage to hold on to a tiny voice inside us.
It’s that quiet whisper telling us to keep trying, to keep believing that we will
get unstuck, and rediscover our flow . . . somehow . . . someday.

The question is, how can we get unstuck and rediscover our flow—a state of
ease as we navigate change—not just briefly but for the long term?

The answer is the same one we’ve had all along. We get unstuck by embracing
change, but not in the ways we’ve attempted in the past. To manifest
lasting and fulfilling change, we first have to re-create our entire experience
around change.

We’ll begin that process by first understanding the role that the brain plays
in keeping us stuck.

The Brain’s Safety Bias

The primitive human brain was not wired to value change, growth, and flow.
Instead, the primitive brain, also called the unconscious brain, is engineered to

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support survival above all else. As a result, avoiding pain is a far bigger focus than seeking reward or creating pleasure.

That may sound limiting, but the brain’s singular focus on safety has served us well. After all, it was only a few hundred years ago when day-to-day life revolved almost exclusively around surviving. If you didn’t stay alert in the woods or mountains or vast, open plains, you could easily end up face-to-face with a startled bear, hungry lion, or venomous snake.

Given that this was true for the majority of human existence to date, the brain developed to be more focused on negativity—what could go wrong, be dangerous, and so on—than on positivity, such as what may be beneficial, enjoyable, and so on. Historically speaking, it was the cautious person who walked in fear who was most likely to survive. The unfortunate ones who wandered aimlessly in the wild were far more likely to get eaten.

That’s why the brain evolved to overestimate threats and underestimate benefits. Studies have even shown that the brain recognizes fear in other people’s faces faster than happiness.1 It’s how we’re wired.

The Brain and Body on Fear

The brain’s bias toward negativity quickly impacts the physical body. When we feel emotions like fear, the amygdala, a part of the brain responsible for survival instincts, essentially sounds an internal alarm. When this happens, the brain instructs the body to start releasing chemicals, including the “stress hormone” cortisol.

As cortisol floods the body, our senses are heightened, making us more alert and better able to run faster, climb higher, and perform other potentially life-saving functions. Since the brain is channeling our energy toward survival, fewer of our internal resources are available for nonessential functions, such as creativity, complex problem solving, nurturing, digestion, and more.

This entire process, which starts in the brain and quickly spreads throughout the body, is commonly known as the stress response, or the fight-or-flight response.

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The Primitive Brain in a Modern World
Throughout most of human history, the primitive brain and the stress response it initiates have proven critical to our individual and collective survival. Today, however, as we navigate daily life protected by thick walls, modern conveniences, and abundant technology, our needs are different. We can spend far more time and energy on thriving and far less on basic survival. Nonetheless, we’re still being guided by the same primitive brain we had hundreds of years ago.

The truth is, navigating modern life with a primitive brain can be limiting. While it was fantastic that our brains learned to detect that lion creeping in the tall grass after we narrowly escaped the first time, the brain’s “negativity bias” often seems excessive today.2 As one example, you might not need your primitive brain to prevent you from speaking up in a meeting because you were teased for speaking up in elementary school—but it will. Similarly, you might not want that one poor math grade in middle school to keep you from effectively managing your finances—but again, it will.

The primitive brain’s survival bias is so well honed that every time we have an experience that creates a strong negative emotional response, it creates new neural pathways. Those pathways are a kind of hardwiring that protect us from experiencing those same challenges—like speaking up or doing math—again. It’s the exact same process that the primitive brain underwent to protect us from that lion creeping through the tall grass.

The question is, are those experiences equal? Is being teased for speaking up in elementary school as dangerous as being surprised by a hungry lion? Of course not! Unfortunately, the primitive brain can’t tell the difference.

Why Change Feels So Hard

So how does this safety bias affect us when we’re trying to get unstuck?

The primitive brain’s bias comes into play when we try to create the change that’s necessary to get unstuck. That’s because, according to the primitive brain, change is unsafe.

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This blanket bias against change may seem counterintuitive when we’re talking about positive change that can help us get unstuck. However, this is the primitive brain we’re talking about. Its programming is basic and primal, so it doesn’t differentiate between positive and negative change. By definition, change means uncertainty, and by default, uncertainty is unsafe. As far as the stuck, has not interfered with survival is sufficient evidence to categorize it as safe.

In other words, across the board, the brain prefers the certainty of your current experience (which it sees as safe, simply because you’re still alive) over the uncertainty of change (which it sees as unsafe, simply because it’s unknown). That’s why change feels so hard—because the brain and body are working against us when we most need their support.

When we attempt to grow, expand, and evolve, the primitive brain rushes in to protect us from potential new threats. It fires off warning signals, telling the brain and body that we are unsafe. That’s how the pattern of panic works.

Unfortunately, getting out of the pattern of panic can be challenging. Since our panic registers on emotional, mental, and physical levels, we can’t simply talk ourselves out of it.

Tapping into the Primitive Brain

The good news is, we have 24/7 access to a powerful resource for rewiring the primitive brain—the body!

Multiple studies have used high-resolution fMRI scans to observe specific points on the body, called acupoints. These points act like gateways to the primitive brain. By tapping on these points while processing and releasing our negative emotions and limiting beliefs, as we do when we’re tapping, we can send the primitive brain positive, calming messages.

One of the most exciting aspects of tapping is that it’s a simple practice that anyone can use. Once you know tapping, you always have a tool to support you through times of stress. It’s incredibly self-empowering!

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WANT MORE RESEARCH?

If you’re interested in reading more about dozens of other studies that have demonstrated how effective tapping is for a wide range of disorders and conditions, you can visit www.thetappingsolution.com/science-research or check out my brother Nick Ortner’s New York Times best-selling book The Tapping Solution: A Revolutionary System for Stress-Free Living.

Where Lasting Change Begins

I had been tapping for over a year when I finally began using it to address the pattern of panic that had kept me stuck since my first diet at age 14.

The turning point began one day when I was attending a conference after my brother and I had released The Tapping Solution documentary film. By that point I’d done online interviews and Tapping Meditations, and we’d begun to attract an online audience.

Before the event began, the volunteer who was registering me shared how much she’d gotten from my Tapping videos, and then said something I’ll never forget:

“You’re bigger than I thought you’d be.”

I smiled, hoping she wasn’t noticing the shame rising up through my throat, burning my cheeks a molten red. In that single moment, she confirmed every fear I’d ever had. As far as my primitive brain was concerned, she’d just told me that I wasn’t good enough to be seen—and wouldn’t be, until I lost weight.

In a state of shock, I walked over to my brother Nick and told him what had happened. After commenting on how rude that was, he very gently said, “You’ve been struggling with this for a long time, and it obviously causes you a lot of emotional pain. Why don’t you try Tapping?” To be honest, even though I had seen over and over again the power of Tapping, my first reaction was to roll my eyes. I was still so brainwashed to believe weight loss was only about our ability to push hard and stick with a diet. We live in a society that tells us that lasting change only happens when we push hard enough for it.

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Later that evening, though, I let his words sink in and realized he had a good point. I was tired—tired of trying so hard and nothing working. I was tired of how much my insecurities consumed my thoughts, and of being disappointed after each new plan failed to produce the lasting change I desired.

I had an honest conversation with myself and realized the panic, worry, and brute force I was trying to use to change just wasn’t working.

In the days and weeks that followed, as I used Tapping to address my relationship with food and my body, I discovered something that surprised me. My problem wasn’t binge eating or the size or shape of my body. It was how I’d been treating myself. It was the decade-plus I’d spent trying to hate myself happy.

Instead of focusing my Tapping exclusively on binge eating and getting motivated to exercise, my attention began to turn toward self-love and selfacceptance. Before long, I began to feel more at ease in my body than I had in many years. A month later, I’d lost 10 pounds without dieting or depriving myself. I felt calmer, more confident and empowered around food than I ever had. I was also exercising, but in pleasurable, enjoyable ways.

I was making changes that brought me peace, joy, and ease. Thanks to Tapping, I’d discovered my flow around my body, food, and exercise. My entire life did begin to feel different, but not because I was a size 2 (I wasn’t). My circumstances, my career, finances, and love life were still far from perfect, but I felt more at peace than I had in a very long time.

As weeks turned into months, I realized that my primitive brain’s safety bias had prevented me from feeling good in my own skin. For years I’d told myself that losing weight was the key to being seen in my career, relationships, and beyond. For years I’d told myself that once I’d lost weight, I could speak my mind and be myself. While the conscious brain might have found that exciting and liberating, to my primitive brain, that additional exposure was threatening. To keep me safe, my primitive brain wanted and needed me to continue binge eating so I didn’t venture into new and unknown territory where I might get hurt.

With Tapping, I was able to release my limiting beliefs and deep-seated fears. I was able to reassure my primitive brain that I was safe being seen. As I began to transform my inner life, releasing anxiety, fear, and other emotions in the process, I easily found my flow. Because I’d used Tapping to shed my panic, I

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could get in touch with myself on a deeper level, and move forward in positive, empowering ways.

Although my primitive brain is still hard at work, often pointing out new reasons for me to feel afraid, now that I understand what it’s up to, I can regain my calm without resorting to self-sabotaging behavior.

The Power of Joy

When you imagine embracing the unknown and celebrating change, do you feel excited, even energized?

How, then, do you feel when that uncertainty and change enter your life in real, tangible terms—in the form of a sudden job change or a shift in relationship, finances, family, health, or similar? Do you dive into real-life challenges with change, or do you hesitate, whether by delaying decision making, procrastinating, worrying excessively, or something else?

Let’s face it, change and uncertainty are fun in theory, but often scary when they enter our daily lives. Now that you know that the anxiety you feel around change and the unknown is just the primitive brain tainting your relationship with change, stop for a second and try to imagine what tangible, real-life change might feel like . . . without the panic.

Could creating change in order to get unstuck be a source of joy? Could it boost your creativity . . . abundance . . . even love? Could making changes be uplifting and inspiring . . . even when things don’t go exactly as planned?

The first step in re-creating your experience around change is noticing how and where you experience panic in your body. When you focus on feeling stuck, do you feel tightness in your chest, a knot in your stomach, pain in your back, neck, or elsewhere? Do you feel sensations like hot or cold, buzzing or throbbing? If so, where in your body do you feel them?

As you begin to notice how panic manifests in your body, keep in mind that panic doesn’t always feel frantic or frenetic. Most of us have gotten used to absorbing our panic, so it can show up in the body as dull, persistent, numb, or even heavy or slow feelings.

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As you move forward, continue to notice when and how panic shows up in your body. That new awareness will be enormously helpful as we continue to break out of the pattern of panic. First, though, we’ll look at where we’re going by considering what flow is and what flow isn’t.

Time for the End-of-Chapter Tapping Meditation!

It’s time to use Tapping to begin quieting the pattern of panic. Before moving on to the next chapter, use the Chapter 1 Tapping Meditation that follows. If you’re new to Tapping, first refer to the Tapping Quick Start Guide starting on page xix.

CHAPTER 1 TAPPING MEDITATION: QUIETING THE PANIC
Close your eyes for a moment and focus your attention on feeling stuck. As you do that, mentally scan your body. Notice any sensations you feel. These are likely ways that your body is absorbing panic.

Does the word panic not resonate with you? Maybe it shows up as frustration or anger. Use the word that most resonates.
Focus on where in your body you feel the panic most intensely. Rate the intensity of that panic on a scale of 0 to 10, with 10 being the highest intensity you can imagine.

With that panic in mind, let’s start tapping.

As you tap through the rounds, feel free to substitute words that reflect your experience. Also be aware of how your experience shifts during and after tapping.

Take a deep breath.

Begin tapping on the Karate Chop point.

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Karate Chop (repeat three times): Even though I have all this panic in my body when I think about needing to make a change, I accept myself and how I feel.
Eyebrow: This panic
Side of Eye: It’s in my body
Under Eye: I can feel it
Under Nose: I feel it in <area of body where you feel it most>
Under Mouth: It feels like <describe it—buzzing, tightness, etc.>
Collarbone: This panic
Under Arm: It’s in my body
Top of Head: I feel it
Eyebrow: This panic

Side of Eye: It’s overwhelming
Under Eye: It’s been with me for so long
Under Nose: Something has to change
Under Mouth: I’ve been trying for so long
Collarbone: And nothing seems to work
Under Arm: So I feel all this worry
Top of Head: All this frustration

Eyebrow: This panic in my body
Side of Eye: Part of me wants to let it go
Under Eye: Another part of me wants to hold on to it
Under Nose: Because I have to worry
Under Mouth: And panic
Collarbone: To make a change
Under Arm: That’s what I’ve been taught
Top of Head: Is that really true?

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Eyebrow: I honor how hard this has been
Side of Eye: It’s safe to feel this panic
Under Eye: Even though I just want it to go away
Under Nose: I can let myself feel this panic
Under Mouth: It’s safe to feel this panic
Collarbone: I don’t have to fight it
Under Arm: I honor how I feel
Top of Head: It’s safe to feel this

Eyebrow: I can begin to let go of this panic
Side of Eye: I can let myself relax now
Under Eye: And let go of this panic
Under Nose: I’m safe without this panic
Under Mouth: I don’t need this panic to stay safe
Collarbone: I can let it go now
Under Arm: I can feel calm in my body
Top of Head: I can trust that I’m safe

Eyebrow: I’m safe without this panic
Side of Eye: I can feel quiet and relaxed now
Under Eye: I can let my body rest
Under Nose: And let my body feel better
Under Mouth: Releasing this panic now
Collarbone: Relaxing in this moment
Under Arm: I’m safe
Top of Head: I can relax now

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Eyebrow: I can feel good in this moment
Side of Eye: Things don’t have to be perfect
Under Eye: For me to relax and feel calmer
Under Nose: I can feel at peace in my mind
Under Mouth: And at peace in my heart
Collarbone: And at peace in my body
Under Arm: I’m safe
Top of Head: I can relax now

Eyebrow: I can trust this good feeling
Side of Eye: And let myself feel peaceful now
Under Eye: I can let my body rest
Under Nose: And let myself feel better
Under Mouth: Relaxing in this moment
Collarbone: Feeling calm now
Under Arm: Letting my body and mind relax
Top of Head: Feeling at peace now

Take a deep breath and check in with yourself. How has the panic you felt in your body shifted? Rate its intensity on a scale of 0 to 10.

Note: If your panicked feeling has shifted, either in sensation (from tightness to tingling, for example) or to a new spot in your body, continue tapping until you feel peaceful.

Keep tapping for as long as you like.

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Webster defines flow as “gliding along smoothly.”

Nature demonstrates this perfectly. Spring glides smoothly into summer, summer into autumn, and autumn into winter. Each season flows into the next without struggle or resistance.

To create more flow in your life is to create more ease. The same way nature isn’t always in a state of spring (a time for new growth and blooming), flow isn’t always about creating and achieving. It’s also about recognizing when it’s time to let go, the way we see the autumn trees do so beautifully every fall. Flow is about ending the struggle to always go, do, and be more so that we can sense when to take action and when to rest and reset.

Whether flow shows up as letting go of a past love or pursuing a big goal, being in flow means you experience more ease through the different seasons of life. When we quiet self-criticism and address our fears with Tapping, as we’ll continue to do throughout this journey, we can commune with our soul and learn how to better navigate our own path. We can find our flow.

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Flow That Ebbs and Flows

One of the perks of doing the work I do is having had the chance to meet some of my greatest spiritual mentors, from Louise Hay to Wayne Dyer. Over the years many of them have been candid about those times when they felt stuck, and how they then returned to a state of flow.

One of those moments happened while filming the documentary The Tapping Solution. During that time, we flew to Austin, Texas, to interview Dr. Joe Vitale, who was featured in the movie The Secret. As I sat behind the camera asking him why he personally uses Tapping and recommends it to others, he said something that has stayed with me:

“We are always going to have problems. That’s part of the human experience. The question is, what are we going to do about them?”

His answer highlights what I’ve experienced in myself and seen repeatedly in others: Tapping brings us back to ourselves when we are faced with a challenge so we can handle it with more ease. It allows us to resume flow when we otherwise might get stuck.

I have yet to meet every single person on this planet, so I cannot say with certainty that no one stays in a constant state of flow. Maybe the Dalai Lama or the Pope or some guru who meditates incessantly has figured it out. I myself have never experienced nor met anyone who never gets stuck.

So the question this book answers is not, “How can I always stay in a perfect state of flow?” The question we’re addressing instead is:

How can I bring myself back into flow when I’m feeling stuck?

We begin to uncover the answer by looking at how we relate to our emotions.

Flowing through Emotions

Too often we judge ourselves for being stuck and for feeling negative emotions like anxiety, fear, and worry. Those judgments are one of the biggest reasons we stay stuck.

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Instead of accepting that being stuck is part of our human experience, we make it wrong. We think we should know better. We tell ourselves we shouldn’t ever feel stuck because we’ve read so many books, attended workshops, and dabbled in meditation.

These judgments keep us stuck because of how they impact our self-esteem. I noticed that in myself when I was first introduced to Tapping. At first I couldn’t say the traditional setup statement, which is: Even though [state the problem], I love and accept myself.

Each time, the words I love and accept myself would get caught in my throat, and tears would roll down my face. I had worked so hard at trying to change and improve myself that self-acceptance felt counterintuitive. Why would I love and accept myself when I so desperately wanted to change?

My quest for self-help turned into self-punishment because I was missing a key ingredient: self-compassion. I was great at feeling compassion for others, but refused to give any to myself. That refusal kept me stuck in the pattern of panic.

If your compassion does not include yourself, it is incomplete.
— Jack Kornfield
One of the ways to notice your own judgments about your experience and emotions is by becoming more aware of how and when the words should and shouldn’t show up. For example, you might hear yourself say things like:

“I shouldn’t feel this way.”

“I should have healed this by now.”

“I should be further along by now.”

“I should be doing more.”

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What do you say to yourself when you feel “bad” emotions or admit to yourself that you’re stuck? Write anything that comes to mind:

The Three Ways We Relate to Our Emotions

We tend to address emotions in three main ways. Only one of those ways supports us in getting unstuck and finding our flow.

As we’ve seen, one thing we often do with our feelings is deny and judge them with all those “should” statements. We chastise ourselves for being too sensitive. We may then rely on activities that numb us out, like emotional eating or binge-watching television shows, to avoid those emotions. Distraction feels like a relief because we are scared to face how we feel.

When we aren’t willing to face how we feel, the body may try to get our attention through anxiety we feel in our chest, insomnia, physical pain, and more. It’s the body saying, Hey! You’re holding on to something that’s hurting you. Pay attention!

Another way we address our emotions is by feeding them. We run through what happened in our mind over and over again and get angrier and angrier. We don’t want to let go of the anger because we fear what may happen if we do. We tell ourselves that we need that anger—or sadness, or fear, or anxiety—in order to change or simply to keep ourselves safe.

The tricky part, as we’ve seen, is that for a short time this strategy may work. You may take action as a result of your anger, fear, or other feelings. However, when your action is motivated by panic or other negative emotions,

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you will feel like you’re walking through molasses to get to where you want to go. Your progress will be slow and frustrating.

Other times, this habit of reliving and feeding our emotions keeps us feeling frozen. We hold on to these feelings, hoping that by focusing on them, we can prevent being hurt again in the future. We hold on to prevent a pain that’s already happened, and we stay stuck.

You’re also more likely to make poor decisions because you’re so deeply rooted in negative emotion that you can’t think clearly.

The third and most constructive way we can relate to our emotions is by acknowledging and accepting them. When we do this, we can move through our emotions and learn from them.

This is the only way of relating to our emotions that leaves space for us to find our flow. That’s because we don’t get stuck in pushing emotions away or holding on to them. We move through them just as nature moves through the seasons.

To find our flow, we have to let our emotions flow.

While it is possible to move through our emotions on our own, Tapping provides direct access to the primitive brain and the body, both of which store emotion. As a result, with Tapping we’re able to feel and release emotions more quickly and easily.

Even the act of telling yourself you need to process this emotion and learn from it before your 6 p.m. yoga class is a command fueled with judgment and criticism.

It all starts by acknowledging that where are you are and how you’re feeling is okay. We’ll continue to do that as we move through this journey.

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Positive Thinking: When It Works (and When It Doesn’t)

Isn’t it better to focus on the positive? Isn’t tapping on affirmations and mantras a better starting point?

I’ve heard these questions from clients so many times, I’m going to share something else about this topic.

Of course no one consciously wants to get stuck in negative thoughts or emotions. The fact is, though, we all have them sometimes. By trying to ignore negative feelings or judge ourselves for having them, we simply give them permission to control us and our behavior. When we resist our negative thoughts and emotions, when we try to force ourselves into positivity, our negative emotions gain more power over us, not less.

Anger is a great example. If we’re angry, we can’t just decide to stop feeling anger. We can’t force ourselves not to be angry. We need to feel and move through our anger. We have to find a way to “blow off steam” before we can relax and calm down.

Tapping gives us an incredibly fast and effective way to move through our negative thoughts and emotions so we can then let them go. At that point, once our emotional “slate” has been cleared, we can authentically root ourselves in positive thoughts, emotions, affirmations, and mantras.

As I’ve mentioned, the best way to experience less negativity is to tap on the negative aspects of your life—your stress, frustration, worry, and so on. As you tap and lessen the intensity of those negative thoughts and emotions, you’ll be able to do Tapping using positive statements, which will further lower your stress and enable you to find your flow.

Embracing the Magic

Now that we’ve defined flow and looked at some of the ways we block flow, you’re probably still thinking something like, Okay, but I still need to create lasting change. I still need to find true love . . . transform my career . . . finances . . . health and body . . . and more!

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Want to read the entire book? Get your copy here!

We all have goals that we want to work toward. We’ll address those later in the journey. Sometimes we’re clear on those goals from the start, and sometimes we discover them as we move forward. Either way, it can feel frustrating to focus on spiritual principles like flow when you need and want love or money or a new job or house. We’ve all been there!

When we stay singularly focused on tangible external goals, though, we tend to stay stuck. We default to self-criticism, which leads us back into the pattern of panic. That’s when we’re our least productive, our least creative, our least resourceful. The anxiety and panic we feel around not having achieved our goals yet may then impact our physical well-being, which contributes to the frustrating cycle we’re trying to escape.

When we release ourselves from panic and allow ourselves to feel what we’re feeling, we give ourselves the chance to rediscover our flow. We become process oriented, rather than goal oriented. We find joy and meaning in the little steps we take each day. Ironically, it’s that shift toward growth and evolution and away from outcomes that often allows us to realize our desires more easily and faster, as well.

Simply put, if it isn’t pleasurable, it’s not sustainable.

That’s the magic of falling in love with the process of finding flow. We open ourselves to the magic the Universe has to offer us, and without even noticing, we achieve our goals faster and more easily than we ever imagined.

Your Greater Story Is Unfolding Here and Now

Pick up a biography or watch a biographical movie. Notice the moments when this or that famous person felt stuck, lost, and disappointed. It was in those moments that they had to make a choice. They could let their life’s story be about how stuck and hopeless they felt, or they could accept the challenge and discover that they are stronger than their circumstances.

Being dissatisfied with life, feeling stuck, and longing for more is one of those pivotal moments for you, too. It’s one chapter of the bigger, longer, greater story that is your life. One day you’ll look back at this very moment and understand

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how even when you felt stuck and lost, there was magic all around you, moving you closer to where you most longed to be.

Trust that magic. Dance with it. Let it guide you. You’re on your way, even now.

Time for the End-of-Chapter Tapping Meditation!

In the next chapter, we’ll take a closer look at an important piece of the pattern of panic—the role of the critical voice.

Before you move to Chapter 3, make sure to complete the Chapter 2 Tapping Meditation.

If you’re new to Tapping, first refer to the Quick Start Tapping Guide starting on page xix.

CHAPTER 2 TAPPING MEDITATION: WELCOMING MORE EASE INTO YOUR LIFE
The primitive brain is so oriented toward negativity that we sometimes hesitate to trust that we can realize fulfilling, lasting change and experience more flow, or ease, in our lives.

When you imagine creating the change you desire, how much mistrust do you feel around the idea that you could also experience more ease, or flow, on a regular basis? On some level do you believe that “other people” can receive abundance, in its many forms, and experience more flow? How unsafe does it feel to trust that you can create the change you desire and experience more flow?

Rate the intensity of your resistance—your mistrust and so on—on a scale of 0 to 10.

Take a deep breath.

Begin tapping on the Karate Chop point.

22

Karate Chop (repeat three times): Even though I’ve been taught that I have to push and suffer to create lasting change, I accept myself and I’m open to a new way.
Eyebrow: If I want to create lasting change
Side of Eye: I have to suffer through it
Under Eye: Change takes willpower
Under Nose: And I never seem to have enough willpower
Under Mouth: I keep pushing myself to change
Collarbone: And nothing has been working
Under Arm: It’s not safe to expect more flow and ease in my life
Top of Head: I’ll be too disappointed when it doesn’t happen

Eyebrow: It’s not safe to trust I’ll find my flow
Side of Eye: It’s not safe to trust I can have ease and lasting change, too
Under Eye: That’s too much
Under Nose: I’ve never been one of those people
Under Mouth: Who gets what they want easily
Collarbone: Anything worthwhile has to be hard
Under Arm: I can’t trust that I’ll find my flow and create lasting change
Top of Head: It’s too much

Eyebrow: My life just isn’t like that
Side of Eye: Good things are always hard
Under Eye: I can’t expect more ease, too
Under Nose: I can’t expect to find my flow and create this change
Under Mouth: It’s too much
Collarbone: Is it really, though?
Under Arm: Maybe I can find my flow?
Top of Head: Maybe I can experience more ease, too?

23

Eyebrow: But I can’t let go of this belief
Side of Eye: That good things have to be hard
Under Eye: Maybe I can, though
Under Nose: Maybe I can try to let more ease into my life
Under Mouth: As I move toward the lasting change I desire
Collarbone: I’m safe believing that I can experience more ease, too
Under Arm: Maybe good things can feel easy, too
Top of Head: It’s safe to trust in flow

Eyebrow: I can trust that I can experience more ease
Side of Eye: And create the change I desire, too
Under Eye: It’s safe to relax
Under Nose: It’s safe to feel good
Under Mouth: I can feel excited about this!
Collarbone: I can relax and trust in flow
Under Arm: I can welcome more ease into my life
Top of Head: And let that ease fill me with joy

Eyebrow: All this ease
Side of Eye: All this flow
Under Eye: I embrace it
Under Nose: I welcome it into my daily experience
Under Mouth: I can trust the joy it brings
Collarbone: And allow myself to feel safe within my flow
Under Arm: I can relax now
op of Head: I can feel this joy now

Take a deep, relaxing breath. Check back in on the intensity of your resistance around embracing flow and ease as you create lasting. Keep tapping until you feel the desired level of joy and peace.

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Do you remember a time in your life when you have experienced the Pattern of Panic? Or, was there a time that you felt stuck? Share your story below!



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14 Comments on this post

  1. Eleanor mcknight says:

    Hi will be ordering your book now .I have been on antidepressants for years yes they stopped panick attacks but hate being on them..is their anything you can help me with to get of them ? The withdrawel is horrendous.ty x

  2. Sondra Libucha says:

    Living in a state of controlled panic is exactly what my life feels like – regarding money, finding love and my weight. I am an expert at numbing and disconnecting. I know that letting my emotions flow is key for me but so hard to recognize since I disconnect and deny emotions so adeptly. Looking forward to the rest of the book. Thank you, Jessica for this insightful work.

  3. Serena says:

    Hi Jessica
    Love 💜 your new book. A lot of fantastic insights and its so easy to relate to, you have a fantastic writing style. I am a proofreader so I hope you dont mind me
    pointing out on page 19 the last paragraph says “acknowledging that where are you are” …there are several ways to re-word this so I will leave it with you.
    Also please note I would be honored to offer my proofreading skills free of charge to support the fantastic work you all do 👍😎

  4. Maryellen Moore says:

    Hi, I purchased this audio book from Hayhouse last week and I am loving it immensely, I especially love to do the tapping sequences with Jessica, the stories are great as well, my favorite is the clearing clutter, I needed this one!!!!!
    This will definitely be my go to book for clearing my home heart and mind
    Thank you for this wonderful book

  5. Anne says:

    Bless you SO much Jessica for making this available right now. I’m in the process of launching an amazing gift to the world – being ME, bringing all that I am out there ….but I’ve kept getting caught up in someone else’s game to keep me small & the feel somewhere that I just won’t be able to get my stuff off the ground Reading these 2 chapters today it’s just unlocked a recall of being told when I was studying for A levels & asked someone I looked up to for help & they looked at my revision notes & said “you’ll never get anywhere with those, you need to abbreviate it all”…then later at polytechnic when I mentioned that I found it hard taking notes fast enough in lectures & keeping up with the pace & the person asked to see my notes & said “I’m not suprised, you’ve really got to learn to abbreviate stuff”….and again when I was preparing all the info for my dissertation & panicking I’d too much to do & no time “you’ll never get anything finished if you don’t learn to shorthand” …..and I did try SO hard to learn to abbreviate but notes didnt make proper sense to me when I went back over them, & I even did a self study course on shorthand but struggled & struggled with it & saw so clearly that unless the person I went to for help with whatever it was could do shorthand themselves I wasnt going to be able to GET help…so i dropped shorthand….My breakthrough today & why I’m sharing this is that it made me see a belief that’s had me stuck – “I’m never going to get anything finished because I’m incapable of abbreviating it”….so my pattern has been to manifest amazing things then just before “launch” point I freeze, “This can’t possibly work I havent abbreviated it”…..& the other impact is that I’ve kept playing small instead of “letting it all shine” So, now have the key to unlock & be free of this pattern..tons of love & thanks for your beautiful gifts

    • Nick Ortner says:

      Great insights, Anne! Some of us are meant to be brief, and others are meant to express ourselves in all of our spectacular glory! You find your way, then tap to release what others have said. You got this! Hugs! -Jessica

  6. Sylvana Simon says:

    Thank you for the preview of the book I’ve already ordered Jessica 🙂 I’m very much looking forward to what follows. Great to have the tapping meditations to practice in the meantime.

  7. nico says:

    Nicely written, Jessica. Kind to share those two tapping meditations. Think they’re helpful. Thnx

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