A couple of months ago I was working with one of my Tapping Groups. We were tapping on particular issues that were keeping members stuck and preventing them from achieving their goals. “Sally” stated that she would really like to start running again. She claimed that running had helped her to lose weight in the past, but that she now felt self-conscious running in public. So we tapped for her. Although it wasn’t possible at that time for her to go out for a run and see how effective the tapping had been, she claimed to feel more positive and less apprehensive. At the following group she reported that she had in fact started running again!
It was after this that I started getting the crazy idea that maybe I should also do some running. Please understand, for me this was really a crazy idea, and anyone who knows me well would also be surprised! I’ve never been much of an athlete. A good swimmer yes, but a bit of a disaster on dry land! I hated running. I used to get stitches, shin splints and go bright red in the face and stay that way for at least an hour afterwards. One year in high school I came last in the annual Cross Country race. I remember arriving at the end and only my mother and one or two other people were still there.
My usual tactic with crazy ideas is to put them on the back burner and see what happens to them. When they don’t go away I take them out and have a better look at them. That’s what happened with this crazy idea. On closer examination I found that it brought up a lot of fear for me, in the same way that it had for “Sally”. I was literally paralyzed at the thought of what other people might say if they were to see me running. I was also seriously afraid that I was not going to be able to do this properly, and that I’d make a real fool of myself. I had visions of myself doubled over unable to breathe, let alone get myself home.
So I did some tapping for myself:
Even though I am so uncomfortable with what people will say if they see me running, I deeply and completely accept myself.
EB: I’m afraid they will laugh at me.
SE: I’m afraid they will call me names.
UE: I’m afraid that they’ll make nasty comments about my body.
UN: What if they think I’m useless?
Ch: I don’t want to be judged by others.
CB: I don’t want others looking at me.
UA: What if I’m not acceptable?
TH: I feel really uncomfortable putting myself out there like that.
EB: Does it really matter what they think?
SE: It’s not like I even know them.
UE: It’s not like I have to hear what they think.
UN: It’s just their opinion.
Ch: I don’t have to concern myself with their opinion.
CB: Their opinion does not have to define me.
UA: I don’t have to restrict myself because of something someone else might think.
TH: It doesn’t matter what anyone else thinks about me, only what I think about me.
Even though I’m afraid that I won’t be able to do this properly, I deeply and completely love and accept myself.
EB: I don’t think I can do this.
SE: I’ve never been any good at running.
UE: I’m no good at this.
UN: I don’t even know why I want to do this.
Ch: I’m probably going to make a fool of myself.
CB: What if I can’t do more than a few metres?
UA: I don’t think my body can do this.
TH: I doubt my ability to do this properly.
EB: Everyone has to start somewhere.
SE: I don’t expect to be a superstar from the start.
UE: Maybe I can just take it at my own pace.
UN: I’m not that unfit.
Ch: It would be fun to try something new.
CB: Just because I used to be bad at this doesn’t mean it has to always be like that.
UA: I can just go out and give it a try.
TH: I think that I can try this.
After a couple of rounds I not only felt no more fear, but I was actually quite looking forward to trying it! On my first run I soon discovered that there was more to tap for. The part of me that always expects me to do something perfectly the first time and likes me to beat up on myself if I don’t was back. So I did some mental tapping as I went along.
Even though I’m not doing this perfectly, I’m going to be kind to myself and accept myself just the way that I am.
EB: I’m not doing this perfectly.
SE: Normally I’d be beating myself up for that.
UE: It’s ok for me to walk when I need to.
UN: The fact that I’m out here is wonderful enough.
Ch: Criticizing myself is only going to make me depressed and unhappy.
CB: I’m going to accept that I am doing the very best that I can.
UA: I’m going to praise myself instead of being hard on myself.
TH: I’m proud of myself!
That was about 2 months ago. I’m now running about 3 times a week, and have been able to consistently increase the distance that I can run in one go. I actually look forward to it and enjoy it.
I feel that I have already won the most important race of them all – successfully confronting and tapping away my fears so that I could tackle something that I had a very fixed negative belief about. I know for a fact that if EFT could help me to start running, that it can do the same for every other limiting belief that I have about myself and my abilities.
Port Elizabeth, South Africa
From the EFTfree Archives, which are now a part of EFT International .
Originally published on May 15, 2010.