Acacia Counseling

Gene Douglas, M.Ed. LPC LMFT

Meridian Points Used In EFT

Refer to this when given EFT instructions:

The meridian points described below are used in Emotional Freedom Technique, a very rapid type of therapy for appropriate types of problems. When given instructions for EFT, refer to his list in order to follow the instructions. You may want to print this page, in order to refer to it as you work. TFT, or Thought Field Therapy, uses the same points, and will be discussed below.

Before you begin tapping, estimate your feeling -- at that same moment -- on a scale of 10, with 10 being as bad as the feeling could possibly be, 5 being half that much, and zero being no feeling. When you finish, estimate the feeling again. (Called SUD, for subjective units of discomfort.)

The SUD is estimated as you are thinking of the problem, or something connected with the problem. (This is the strength of the feeling you are experiencing now, not when a certain event actually happens.)

As you tap on EFT points, think of the problem as you do. Once you have tried all combinations that might work, if your SUD is not zero, then think of affirmations, both positive and negative, relating to the problem, as you tap. Where possible, tap with both hands.

One positive affirmation might be, "Even though I ...(whatever) I deeply and completely accept myself." Repeat the affirmation with each point you tap.

To keep yourself thinking about the problem as you tap, repeat a word or phrase about the problem with each point that you tap (if you are not using an affirmation.) For example, "rape," or "Charlie" or "depressed feeling," or something that represents what happened. A negative affirmation might be, "I feel depressed."

The relevant points are: (With abbreviations used to represent them)

1. Brow: at the inside end of either eyebrow, nearest the nose. Not on the eyebrow itself, but on the hairless skin at the end of the brow. Tap with two fingers, such that one touches the hair, and the other touches skin between your brows. Give a good solid thump with the tips of your fingers, unless you have long nails.

Tapping should be between the brows, not above. Your aim is assured if you use 2 fingers, and one of them touches the hair of the brow, and the other touches the skin.

2. Eye: (under eye, UE) top of the cheekbone about an inch below the centered pupil. Near the eye socket. Be certain your tapping is centered below the eye when you look straight forward (that is, not to one side, or toward the insides or outsides.) Thump solidly, but be sure not to poke yourself in the eye with a long nail. With long nails, hold your elbows out, and point your nails toward your nose.

3. Side of eye: (Outside Eye, OE ) To the outside of either eye is a bony ridge. Just behind that ridge, at the front of the temple, is the spot to tap. (In the hollow, next to the ridge.)

4. Under nose: (Nose) Use one hand, and tap in the center of the upper lip.

5. Chin: Tap in the center, at the top of the chin, where it meets the lip.

6. Collarbone: (CB) At the hollow space near the end of the CB, made below where the collarbone meets the sternum, the flat bone in the center of the chest (breastbone). Tap in the soft spot beneath the inside end of the collarbone. (The collarbone actually overlaps the sternum a little bit.)

7. Outside Collarbone (OCB): Under other end of collarbone, near shoulder. Found by holding elbows straight out, and touching the points with your thumbs. Tap with the tips of 4 fingers.

8. Arm: (UA) on the ribs under the arm, 4 inches below the armpit, even with the nipples, or on the "bra-line." If you tap it with 4 fingertips from the opposite hand, you can't miss the spot.

9. Breastbone (BB): Find a notch at the top of the breastbone. Go down 1 inch, and find a hollow space just above where it gets thicker. Tap there.

10. Edge of Hand: The "karate chop area" between the little finger and the wrist. If you tap it with 4 fingers, you can't miss the spot.

11. Gamut Spot: Hollow spot between the bones leading to the little finger and ring finger, on the back of the hand, about an inch behind the knuckles. If you use 4 fingers to thump it, you can't miss the spot.

12. LF: Little Finger -- on the inside edge of the little finger nail, (nearer the next finger.) Tap the flesh which touches the side of the finger nail.

13. Any other finger (IF, MF): edge of fingernail, on the side nearer the thumb. Don't tap the fingernail, or the finger leading up to it. Just the fleshy area on the "thumb side" of the nail.

14. Thumb: edge of thumbnail, on the side away from the hand (if you form a "salute") nearer the body when the back of the hand is up, or up when the palm is toward the body.

(Thump firmly with two of your fingers, to put some energy into the spot. No need to thump so hard you would hurt yourself, of course.

14. Eye Roll: While tapping the gamut spot, turn your eyes (not your head) all the way down to the floor. Then slowly roll your eyes up to the ceiling, over about 5 or 6 seconds. Then slowly roll your eyes back to the floor as you continue tapping. Move your eyes, not your head.

15. Psychological Reversal: A concept used by Dr. Roger Callahan, to describe processes which interfere with TFT(tm) very similar to EFT. Treat for PR by tapping the Edge of the Hand, while thinking of the problem. The edge of the hand is between the little finger & the wrist, or the "karate chop spot."

16. Mini-Reversal: When a feeling is reduced, but not all the way to zero, follow the instruction above, once again.

17. Recurring Reversal: rubbing a "tender" spot on the rib that attaches to the breastbone, about 3" on one side of center, as you think of the problem. This is along a horizontal line about 1/2" below both nipples on a male. Also called the "sore spot" because it is slightly painful when you press on it. Used when there is a reversal of a previously successful treatment, after removed symptoms may return. (A TFT, but not an EFT concept, though equally valid for both. Also, tobacco reverses the effects of treatment.)

The spot will be found as follows: find a soft spot at the bottom of your throat, above your breastbone. Go down about 3" and then go to the side about 3". (Tip of thumb to tip of forefinger down, then thumb to forefinger to the side.)

18. Gamut treatment: Called that because a gamut of treatments can be done on the same spot. While tapping firmly on the gamut spot of either hand, with four fingers, about 3 or 4 times per second, tap about 2 to 5 seconds in each of these conditions, while thinking of the problem:

eyes open, eyes closed, eyes open. (The gamut spot is the hollow between the bone leading to the little finger and the next bone, on the back of the hand.)

Eyes rolled down and left, eyes down and right. (Move your eyes, not your head.)

Make a wide circle with the eyes, clockwise. Then the same, counter-clockwise. You will see the floor, a wall, the ceiling, the other wall, and the floor when you do. Move your eyes, not your head.

Still tapping, count to five, either mentally or aloud.

Still tapping, still thinking of the problem, hum a tune -- any tune for a few seconds, so long as there is more than one note of different pitches. If you sing "Do-re-mi..." be sure you sing different notes, and don't just say it. Humming a monotone just defeats the exercise. Count again.

That is the end of the gamut pattern. Then, thinking of the problem again, repeat the original pattern (everything you did before.)

The humming is to activate the right brain. The counting is to activate the left brain. Moving the eyes in various ways is to activate various other brain functions. The counting is repeated, because sometimes that side is not activated unless the other side has already been.

When tapping under the arm, using 4 fingers from the opposite hand will guarantee that you will hit the right spot.

When tapping the edge of the hand, use 4 fingers, to guarantee that you will hit the right spot.

Tap firmly, but not so hard as to hurt yourself. If you have long nails, you will need to use the pads of your fingertips, from the underside (palm side) but be sure to tap the edge, not the palm.


(A TFT concept. An EFT view would be that you just need to tap more, or need to find an affirmation that addresses another aspect of the problem.)

For a rapidly recurring reversal, meaning that the reversal recurs so quickly, it appears there has been no effect, use "collarbone breathing." Or, just use the EFT method, and just repeat your tapping.

Collarbone Breathing: While thinking of the problem, press 2 fingers against a single collarbone point, and tap on the gamut spot with the other hand. Do not touch your chest with any other part of your hand. While you are doing this, take a deep breath. Let it out halfway. Then let it out all the way. Then breathe in halfway, and exhale.

Then do the same thing on the other collarbone point. (Sometimes called the K-27 point by acupuncturists.)

Then repeat the two treatments above with the opposite hand.

Then repeat all of the above, with two knuckles against the collarbone points, instead of the tips of the fingers.

That completes the collarbone breathing treatment. Then go back and repeat the main treatment you had used before.

Keep in mind that it isn't possible to constantly think of your problem as you are doing all of these things. That's O.K. Simply return your thoughts to the problem each time you move to the gamut treatment and then back to the main treatment again.

This problem can sometimes be avoided by simply treating for reversal in advance, before every treatment. (EFT theory would also say to tap all points, just to be sure you haven't missed one.)

If tapping the karate spot hasn't completely removed the problem, try treating for recurring or rapidly recurring reversal.

Keep in mind that whether you believe in the treatment makes no difference. It is so different from ordinary experience, that most people don't believe it until they try it, anyway. It works the same whether you believe in it or not.

One thing that will keep it from working is not thinking of the problem, but instead thinking something like, "this is stupid."

Some conditions are not possible to produce while you are doing the treatments. For example, if you have a fear of heights, or driving across bridges, you may not be able to produce the anxiety simply by imagining the situation.

If so, you will simply need to wait until you re-create the situation to see how well the treatment worked. Sometimes you can tap while in the situation (for example, while a passenger in a car, while in a swimming pool, while at a high place, inside a closet, at the end of a long hallway, etc.)

If one combination didn't work, another might. For example, there are two different TFT treatments for phobia, and if the phobia was caused by a traumatic experience (such as of hypodermic needles) then there are three different treatments for trauma. The order in which the points are tapped is said to be important according to TFT theory. EFT theory doesn't say the same.

Likewise, there are at least 6 different common combinations for anxiety. One supposedly has to find the one which applies to his own situation according to TFT theory. EFT theory would say to just use all of the points, and you will be sure to use the right combination, including points you didn't really need.

If you experience a partial remission, and treating for reversal still only allows reduction of the feeling part way, it is likely that you have several causes for the problem operating at the same time. So you would do more than one kind of treatment.

For example, one problem might be treated first for trauma, then for guilt, then for shame, then for anger, and then for rage. using TFT. (Using EFT, all can be treated at the same time.)

The feeling might reduce somewhat after treatment for trauma, and then a little more after treatment for guilt, and so on.

It is my personal opinion that many problems are caused by subconscious memories, and that TFT removes the pain from these memories. That is, the connection between the memory, and the pain center in the brain.

Subsequently, a person may treat certain memories, but others may replace them to create the same effect, (though it may be a reduced effect, caused by other, less painful memories.)

Repeated treatment is the key to this problem. Eventually, treatment has to be sufficient that there are no more such memories left to return. (If you are using EFT, affirmations are helpful when simple tapping doesn't produce a complete result. For example, "Even though I [...have this problem or do this thing...] I deeply and completely accept myself.")

This is especially true where addiction is involved. Repeated treatment will cause the urge to use to return less often, and to be weaker when it does, until eventually it does not return at all.

If the first combination you try doesn't work, there may be a Rapidly Recurring Reversal, but you may just have the wrong combination. Think of it as picking a combination lock. (According to TFT.)

The combination to the lock may involve the numbers 1, 2, 3, 4, and 5. However, if you don't know in what order they are, knowing that much doesn't do much good. Once you turn the lock to the right numbers in the right order, the lock instantly opens completely! (If you use EFT, described below, sequence doesn't matter.)

TFT "removes the pain from memories," means "removes the connection between the memories, and pain centers." The memories actually remain exactly as they were, but without that connection, the memories don't cause the pain to be felt (consciously or unconsciously) every time the memories, or something else associated with them, comes up.

Before treatment, the memories may just be experienced unconsciously, such that the narrative of the memory is not consciously recalled, but the feelings may be consciously felt. Or if the feelings are also kept unconscious, your unconscious mind may simply react to them, by creating a symptom, which you consciously experience. (A craving or compulsion, for example, or a physical symptom, such as nervousness or a headache.)

One note: Dr. Roger Callahan, TFT(tm) originator, believes we are born with most types of phobias, that is, "simple phobias." However, we gradually grow out of them. Some of us don't lose a phobia as we grow up, and are stuck with it as an adult.

Consequently, we may have a fear of even low heights (acrophobia) such as standing in a chair. This has a protective function as an infant, but it almost useless as an adult. Agoraphobia (fear of the outdoors) is seen as another form of the same thing, just turned over sideways. The same person might also experience fear when looking upwards at a tall building.

Those aren't related to memories of negative events, but are treated in the same way. Tapping on a few points takes care of it in a few minutes.

Roger Callahan's TFT requires that you "diagnose" a problem by figuring out what points to tap (and none other) and in what order. If you do this and don't guess right, the client may get impatient and think you are wasting his time with nonsense. Gary Craig's EFT (below) offers a solution to this --- just tap all known points, since there aren't many of them anyway.

However, for phobias, anxiety and addiction, you might want to use a short cut and tap as follows:

Karate, Brow, UE, UA, CB, gamut, repeat. That reduces the total by 10 points, and if you have the right ones by doing that, is faster.


There is a very similar therapy, called EFT, or Emotional Freedom Technique, which differs in the following ways:

EFT, developed by Gary Craig, says that the sequence of tapping doesn't matter. EFT says that "diagnosis" isn't important, in the sense of figuring out just which points are needed. There are combinations of points that work for certain problems, without a need to tap all points. But if you are in doubt, just tap all of the points, because there aren't very many, anyway.

With EFT, if it doesn't work the first time, or works only partially, that doesn't mean you don't have the right combination. It may mean you didn't tap long enough, or tap hard enough. The solution is simply to do it again, or to find another affirmation to address another aspect of the problem.

I've been using EFT for years, and far prefer it to TFT, for the above reasons.

There is no need to bruise yourself, or to poke yourself in the eye with a fingernail. But a solid thump might provide more energy than a light tap, or two fingers or four fingers might be better than one (such as on the karate-chop spot or under the arm.) Tapping longer may work better in some cases than tapping more briefly, and both hands might work better than just one.

With EFT, both reversal spots are considered to be equal (karate spot and "tender spot" on the ribs.) It is simple to treat for reversal in advance, on both spots, every time, just to be sure. (See link to EFT below.) Callahan's TFT(tm) suggests that you treat a while, and then test to see if it worked, then treat for reversal, which may require an extra treatment. However, just tapping the karate spot every time takes only 5 seconds.

An example protocol, with abbreviations, might be for a phobia, anxiety, or an addiction (which use the same procedure) as follows:

Think of problem. Estimate SUD.

1.) Karate - Brow - UE (Under eye) - Arm (under arm) - CB (collarbone)

2.) Gamut (close eyes, open eyes, eyes [not head] down and left, eyes down and right, wide circle with eyes [see the floor, a wall, ceiling, wall, floor] count to 5, sing several notes, count.)

3.) Repeat everything in 1.

4.) Tap Gamut spot (back of hand) 50 times while thinking of problem. (Repeat reminder word several times.)

5.) Slow eye roll upward while tapping Gamut spot.

6.) CB

Repeat a reminder word as you tap each point. Afterward, think of problem and estimate SUD again. Notice the difference from the beginning SUD.

The "basic recipe" means to tap all of the points. That goes as follows:

Karate, Brow, UE, OE, Nose, Chin, Arm (UA), CB, OCB, BB, Thumb, IF, MF, LF, Gamut, repeat (except for gamut) Eye Roll, CB.

Definitions from above: UE (under eye) OE (outside eye) UA (under arm) CB (Collarbone) OCB (outer collarbone) BB (breastbone) IF (index finger) followed by middle & little fingers.

If you aren't completely successful with EFT, follow with TAT -- Tapas Acupressure Technique shown on the next page. Go to More at top, and scroll down to near the bottom of the menu. Also, see "The Unseen Therapist Within," a couple of titles below this one.