I want to begin this story with a moral. And it is … be prepared. You never know when EFT will come in handy.
It all began in the Fall of 2000 when EFT founder, Gary Craig, led a district-wide training for the Phoenix, Arizona school system. He invited some other EFT people working in the schools and I was lucky to be one of them. Flying home, and high on EFT, I was hoping
I might be able to assist a seat-mate with a flying phobia or help calm a crying baby. This was not to be. But 30 minutes before landing in Philadelphia, a loud argument broke out. This was before 9/11 and thoughts of terrorists did not immediately spring to mind, but I, like all the other passengers, was curious and we all turned our heads in the direction of the isle to find out what was happening.
The argument continued loud and clear as a flight attendant escorted a young woman down the isle to the back of the plane. Apparently, she had carry-on luggage that didn’t fit under her seat and there was no room in the overhead compartment. The flight attendant was just doing her job but, as I later learned, the young woman was upset because she assumed she was being discriminated against because of her age (“She wouldn’t have made someone older move!”) and she had deliberately picked a seat up front so that she could exit the plane quickly to meet her boyfriend whom she hadn’t seen in a long time. This attendant was clearly ruining her day!
As luck would have it, there was a middle seat open right next to me, and that’s where the frustrated attendant deposited her, but not before she had the last word. “Just admit you’re wrong!” she said in a loud voice and turned on her heel and marched away. Talk about pouring gasoline on a fire! Not only was this young woman frustrated about the initial situation , but now she had some public humiliation added to it.
She turned to my sympathetic face and started to unload. If she had been a cartoon character, you would have seen a lot of @#$%^! in the bubble above her head. As I remember, there were a lot of expletives and she went on and on, telling me her righteous side of the story. When she paused to take a breath … I quickly said “I know this weird little technique that can calm you down” Yes!” she said, “Show me.” “ It’s weird looking,’ I repeated. “People don’t usually do it in public.” “I don’t care”, she said, “ I want to do it!”
(A little aside here …. I wanted to make sure she was 100% motivated. Not only might she be put off by the appearance of the technique, but also, when it comes to anger … a lot of people who say they want to get rid of it, really don’t. They want to calm down but not before the other person admits wrong-doing and apologizes. Lots of angry people can’t release their anger because to do so would somehow let the guilty person off the hook.) She told me about the boyfriend and how she really didn’t want to let this @#$%! attendant spoil it for her! She was motivated.)
So I said ..” Follow me … just do and say what I’m doing.” We did one quick shortcut round and I think I didn’t use the exact @#$%! words she used, but close, and after this I asked her to close her eyes and take a deep breath and give me a measurement 1-10 of how angry she felt. (Note .. I didn’t have to take the initial distress level .. it was clearly a 10.) “What did you do to me?” she asked. “Nothing, you did it yourself. Why?” “It’s a 5. This is amazing!” “ Do you want to get it to zero?” “Yes!” So we did a second round and she reported a level 0. “ Are you sure?” I asked, wanting to test it. “You know you’re going to have to see her on the way out”, and I mimicked the “bye-byes” that flight staff usually line up to give. “No” she said, “It’s all gone. Really.”
At this point, I reached into my purse and pulled out a hand-out that I give to my clients after I’ve taught them tapping. It includes a website where they can read more about it and get further training. She thanked me and the woman on the other side of her who’d been watching us all along said “Excuse me … do you have another one of those handouts?”