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Tessa, 9, is suddenly getting really bad marks at school, mainly in Maths, even though she used to be an "A student". Two EFT sessions later, she's back to As all along. And her smile is back too! Here is how...

Session 1 :

Tessa is French, but she lives in the USA. Her school grades are excellent, so much so that she's one year ahead in Maths. It happened a year before, and that year everything went fine. However, this year, even though she understands the lessons when she's in the classroom, her grades are getting lower and lower. And that definitely doesn't make her happy.

This issue seems to apply only to Maths, every other subject is fine. She has no idea why. Her mother told me that homework often brings tears, and tension arrises each time the topic is discussed. The teacher is very understanding and supportive. But if Tessa's grades are not improving, she suggests to step back to the previous level, thus removing this unnecessary stress on Tessa.

Tessa already knows about EFT, and has used it a few times when she was not well. So we can start working straight away. I ask her to think about a failed test, she remembers one when she got a D.

That first session goes in 2 steps : clean up past negative experiences, and prepare for a happy future experience.

First, Tessa can still recall her panic when she thinks about that test. EFT is a brilliant technique, and really benefits when associated to other techniques. In this case, Tessa's preferred tool to let go of the panic, is "the pipe". While she's tapping, I ask her to visualise her panic, which to her feels like nausea in her heart. Then I ask her to imagine a pipe going right out of her heart, and then "see" her nausea going right out through the pipe, like dirty water.

We do this several times, and every time she thinks all the nausea and panic went away through the pipe. However, when asked to focus on that test, the panic is right back, if a little less acute each time, and we tap it away. After 3 rounds, she can now think of that test with no anxiety at all.

We then move onto another memory, 2 years earlier. As we're tapping, Tessa explains:

The teacher had just explained a lesson, and then she gave us a test to check that we'd understood. Everybody else had understood, but my answer was wrong. I felt the other kids thought I was stupid.... I felt I was blushing.

Once that memory was "cleaned up" too and she could recall it with no emotion, we moved onto a 3rd memory which used to stress her out. However hard as she tried, she couldn't feel any level of stress over it anymore. I really love this about EFT : if you went through 10 traumas, working on 2 or 3 of them is sometimes enough to really feel at peace with all of them. A lovely side effect!

It's now time to look at another angle. I introduce it to her :

"Tomorrow, you're going to school, and there's a test. How do you feel? ".

Again, panic comes up, shame that she isn't ready, embarrassment if the others would finish before she would, if she didn't understand all of it... She also feels embarrassed when she remembers a friend who asked her why a specific test had taken so long for her to finish. After a few more rounds of tapping, Tessa now feels perfectly OK with the idea of that future test.

It has been a long session. I email her the following round, to use a few times, before homework, or before going to school. I copied it here in full, because it includes most of the aspects we worked on during the session. It could inspire other parents.

Even though I feel I'll still panic a little bit, I know I'm doing my best.

Even though I might panic again, and feel embarrassed if I don't find the answer to a question fast enough, I choose to remain calm and focused.

Even though there is a possibility that I panic or feel embarrassed if I'm not fast enough or if I don't get the right answer, every mistake is a learning opportunity, and all is well!

I'm going to feel embarrassed or panicked

it's always like that, particularly with Math.

When they need to explain several times for me

or when I'm slower that the others, and they have to wait for me.

They are going to resent me for that.

Or I won't find the correct answer and I'll panic.

Or I'll panic because I didn't know there would be a test.

I don't enjoy this panic!

I don't panic on purpose!

And when others have to wait for me, I feel embarrassed, they are going to resent me.

I don't resent them when I have to wait for them.

But my friend already asked me why it took me so long once.

I know she didn't mean to make me feel bad.

But I felt embarrassed all the same, and I'm slightly panicking when I think about it.

She didn't really think of this.

Still, I did feel embarrassed.

It really doesn't help anybody when I feel embarrassed or panicked.

It doesn't help my friends, or the teacher, or myself.

So even if I need a bit more time or if I don't get the answer right

I choose to know, deep in my heart,

That all is well.

This time it's me, another time, it will be somebody else.

And since I would not resent them for needing more time, I don't resent myself either!

I don't need the panic anymore either : If I know the answer, I choose to find it easily, and if I don't know it, that's OK, I'm going to learn something new!

So I'm letting any remaining panic or embarrassment go out through the pipe! I love feeling clear in my head to learn even better!

Mum's session

One month later, Tessa's last test has been another D. However, her reaction has changed. She's not stressed out anymore, but disappointed, she thought she had the correct answers. She really should have had a B.

Another positive change is that she finds it easier to understand in the classroom. Anne answers my question: "It's difficult to say if these changes are due to the tapping : she's less stressed, more confident, doesn't cry much on this any more. She manages better. At home everything is OK."

I suggest a session with Anne, Tessa's mum. I have noticed in the past how the traumas experienced by a parent could transfer as a similar trauma in the child, sometimes in very unexpected ways.

We start tapping for Tessa surrogately, a technique a lot of "tapping parents" use :

Even though Tessa still finds it difficult to manage tests...

Even though she'll need several hours to recover form the shock (of the D)...

But very fast, we come back to Anne, who has a very vivid memory of a failed Math test, aged 12. Even the topic is fresh in her memory : compute the proportions of an ice-cream recipe!

To clean a past trauma, visualising the feeling is quite often an efficient shortcut. We use that method to clean up sadness and anxiety still coming up when she was recalling that test.

To be completely honest, her sadness is not completely gone after our work. It happens quite often in similar circumstances, that the last 5% or so of a past feeling just "stays there". It can actually be difficult to accept the idea that a feeling that has been sitting in the conscious or unconscious mind for so long could really completely go away. That particular belief often needs to be treated specifically. A very summarised version of that round goes :

Even though I refuse to believe that the sadness I had for all these years could actually go away in just a few minutes... 95% of it is already gone, so why not the last 5%?

It takes a few more rounds to free Anne completely of the bad feelings related to that memory. She's really surprised. She comments with her lovely smile : "it's incredible, I feel a weight off my chest".

We tend to "reason" and forget how much an event which can seem quite meaningless when you consider a life span, is actually very vivid and active in our subconscious mind.

We decide to have another session with Tessa a few days later.

Session 2:

Tessa thinks that the first session did help her. She actually used the "pipe technique" several times. "I didn't tap, since the pipe was enough". Completely logical! She did share quality time with mum tapping on her before going to bed.

I ask Tessa her version of what's improved and what still needs work.

"My grades are getting better, and I'm stressing less. But I still felt stressed during tests and had bad grades then. "

She has 2 tests in the following days, including one on the program of the previous 3 months.

This time, we use the film technique, going through every single scene, tapping away negative emotions as they show up, until you can tell the whole story without any negative feeling at all.

So we identify each step : leaving home, going to school, arriving at school at 8:00, test starting at 10:30, sitting the test, end of the test.

When we run the scenario the first time, she feels anxiety (7 out of 10) just imagining she's leaving home. We tap that away, start again, and then the anxiety shows up "on the way to school". Little by little, the anxiety comes in later and later, and weaker each time. When the anxiety doesn't show up anymore, we add more triggers, like recalling the last failed test, imagining she faces a question she can't possibly find an answer to, 2, 3, 7 of these questions, adding the stress to know that there are only 2 minutes to finish... We run the scenario 10 times to be able to run it completely peacefully.

Every time we go through the scenario, we use various "tools", such as tapping, of course, and visualising the pipe, or colors. At some point, she mentions that yellow means calm and light to her, to replace a blue anxiety in her stomach. Each person associate different colors to different feelings. You'll see that this comment was very important for Tessa.

We are "screening the film" perfectly calmly when I add one aspect: "could anybody tease you about your D at the last test?". "Bad feelings" immediately go back up. Still tapping, we do a few interesting visualisations, focusing on the kid who already made this comment. We'll call her G. So our new scenario is: Tessa meeting G, G making a nasty comment, and then Tessa getting to the classroom for the test.

Tessa enjoys a very rich imagination. Her hands are "fizzy", her anger at G "goes out through her ears, like in cartoons"... Knowing that Tessa who would NEVER do this in real life, I even suggest that she gets physical : "if you were to kick her, would that help to let go of your anger?". That IMAGINARY "kick" actually kicked the anger out. But then, we're facing another issue: doubt... "What if G was right? What if I failed this test too?". This is also tapped away.

I choose to write down most of this next round, because I feel it's important to highlight Tessa's change of mind about G. If we could apply the same concept in all bullying situations in school, who knows what would happen?

Even though G might be right, and maybe that's why I'm angry at her, maybe I will have another D, she could also be wrong, and I know I prepared well for this test.

Even though she might be right, and she planted a doubt in my mind, I don't have to accept this doubt she gave me. I can choose what I want to think, and I allow her to think what she wants too.

Maybe she gave me that doubt

because she's jealous

maybe she'd like to be nice like me

maybe things are difficult for her

maybe she's just unhappy,

maybe she only knows to say nasty things

maybe nobody ever taught her to say nice things (I check with Tessa if she thinks all these are potentially true, she approves)

maybe she doesn't really say mean things on purpose?

Maybe she would like to say nice things

but she doesn't know how?

Whatever the situation, I can't solve her issue.

And I choose to feel OK, whatever happens,

I forgive her for giving me that doubt,

and I forgive myself for having accepted that doubt

and I choose to know, deep inside me, that I do know ALL the answers.

That I CAN have an A

that I DESERVE an A

and that I WILL have an A

and all is well! Thank you!

Tessa is now relaxed and smiling.

3 days follow-up

3 days later, I start my day beautifully, opening my first 3 emails. Each one contains a picture of Tessa, looking happier and happier, holding a sign saying "thank you Christine", and covered with yellow pieces of paper! Each picture has a different caption :

I got an A with only one mistake!!!!

I applied the technique on a tough question and it works!!!

I am looking for yellow everywhere!

Remember the comment about colours? Yellow only appeared a few minutes in the second session, and I hadn't realised how much that had helped.

3 months follow-up

Three months later, mum confirms :

Tessa got her grades for the 2nd semester, and in math: she has A on average!!!! She only spoke to me about this result of course. It's amazing in only 2 sessions how it has done her good... She has As everywhere except B in sciences, but nothing matters apart from Math!!!

So thanks again !!!!! No more tears, no need for help, she works on her own without me... pure joy!! It really is a 100% turn around, amazing !!!:).- and regarding G, it was already improving, but this comment about math had touched her because of the topic!

Please note that, besides the "G episode", which has quite a minimal importance in this case, nobody had done anything to "traumatise" Tessa. Her anxiety was simply rooted in her extreme sensitivity and a trivial event. Just imagine a world where all traumas which are created in school would be healed right there and then...

EFT is beginning to root in schools, at various levels, and this is good news. On that topic, I'd suggest you spend a few minutes to enjoy this video about a preschool teacher using EFT with his students. Simply beautiful, if you ask me!

Also, remember that persistence is key. We could have settled on the results of the first session, but the second one really put the icing on the cake.

Many thanks to Anne and Tessa who accepted to share this experience.

Children, parents and all, lets all tap together!