The Problem of Should

Whenever the word should shows up in your thoughts or conversations it is a pretty good sign that prior programming is at work.  Should is a very dangerous word.  It leads to feelings of guilt and shame.  Although your mother might disagree with me, there are very few real shoulds in this world.  Most of the time you could substitute “I would prefer it if you would” or “I want you to”, or “it might be easier/better/safer if” instead of the word should.

Say this problem statement aloud, “I shouldn’t be feeling this way.” Rate the intensity on the 0-10 point scale and record your rating.

illustration for karate chop point

Setup (karate chop point): Even though I know I shouldn’t be feeling this way, I choose to love, accept, and forgive myself anyway. Even though I know I shouldn’t be feeling this way, I choose to love, accept, and forgive myself anyway. Even though I know I shouldn’t be feeling this way, I choose to love, accept, and forgive myself anyway.

diagram of the tapping points
Eyebrow…I shouldn’t be feeling this way
Side of Eye…I don’t even know why it is bothering me
Under the Eye…I don’t think I should be feeling this way
Under the Nose…Just admitting that I feel this way really bothers me
Chin…I feel bad that I feel this way
Collarbone…I’d like to pretend that I feel something different
Under the Arm…Then no one would know that I feel this way
Top of Head…No one would judge me for feeling this way
Eyebrow…I shouldn’t be feeling this way
Side of Eye…But my feelings are real
Under the Eye…And my feelings are ok
Under the Nose…I don’t need to be afraid of my feelings
Chin…And I don’t need to judge my feelings
Collarbone…My feelings happen naturally
Under the Arm…No matter what my feelings are – I’m in control of how I
express them
Top of Head…I choose to acknowledge my feelings, whatever they are
Eyebrow…Who told me I shouldn’t feel this way?
Side of Eye…What do they know about this?
Under the Eye…They are MY feelings
Under the Nose…My feelings are an acceptable part of who I am
Chin…I do feel this way
Collarbone…I accept my feelings just as they are
Under the Arm…I accept my feelings and I accept that they are MY feelings
Top of Head…My feelings are good and I am good

Take a deep breath and check the intensity of your original problem statement. “I shouldn’t be feeling this way.” Record your new intensity rating.  This is an exercise that often sparks additional thoughts and feelings. It is quite likely that other early programming remarks made their way into your consciousness.  Be sure to add them to your tapping journal for later work.

There are more tapping exercises like this one in Tap It Away: 10 Minutes to Freedom With EFT.

Cover Image of Tap It Away: 10 Minutes to Freedom With EFT by Dr. Leanna Manuel

I Have a Love-Hate Relationship With Food

It is a new year and many people, myself included, have an intention to do something positive related to diet, exercise, or health in the new year. Unfortunately, that forward momentum lasts for only a short time. I’ve heard it is an average of only 12 days. With tapping, I think we can do a lot better than that. Ready to get started? A good place for me to start is my love-hate relationship with food.

illustration for karate chop point

The Setup: (karate chop point) Even though I have this love-hate relationship with food, I deeply and completely love and accept myself anyway. Even thgough I love food, but I hate what it does to my body, I deeply and completely love and accept myself anyway. Even though my relationship wtih food and with my body is quite problematic for me at times, I deeply and completely flove myself and accept all of these feelings.

diagram of the tapping points

Eyebrow…I have a love/hate relationship with food

Side of Eye…This love/hate relationship with food

Under the Eye…I hate what my love of food sometimes does to my body

Under the Nose…I love food but I hate my body

Chin…I hate food but I love my body

Collarbone…This love/hate relationship with food

Under the Arm…Even though I have this love/hate relationship with food

Top of Head…I deeply and completely love and accept myself anyway

You might be thinking that this was pretty short and didn’t change anything. You would likely be correct. This is just a starting point. Think of it as the diving board where you are poised to jump/dive off. If you were really paying attention to the words they likely caused you to react in some way, whether to agree or to balk. That is where the magic of this tapping exercise can be found. Continue to tap at the points while stating aloud all of those things that popped in your head.

Check back frequently for more tapping exercises to keep you in alignment with your health goals and check out the book Don’t Diet: Reprogram Your Weight With Meridian Tapping if you want more examples so you can move forward with more confidence.

book cover for Don't Diet Reprogramming Your Weight With Meridian Tapping

Preparing for Weight Loss – New Year’s Resolution – Part III

weight loss - apple with tape measureThis is it, the conclusion of this series designed to help you prepare for successful weight loss when you consider make your New Year’s Resolution. Are you ready to put it all together?  I know that I am

Step Five:

What is your emotional or energetic response to the following words, phrases, and statements.  Rate each one on the 1-10 SUDs scale with 10 being very true or very strong.

I don’t deserve to lose weight. Rating It is not safe for me to lose weight Rating
Deprivation Rating Failure Rating
I’ll just regain the weight Rating I don’t believe I can change Rating
Lonely Rating Unlovable Rating
Sexy Rating Security Rating
Expectations Rating It’s too late Rating
I want them to love me for who I am, not what I look like Rating Sugar Addict Rating
Cravings Rating Obsessions Rating
Irritable Rating Anxious Rating
Lazy Rating Resentment Rating


Each of these words or statements that caused a reaction for you is a potential item that is holding you back from your weight loss success and can be addressed through tapping.

Take out your lists that you made.  Follow the example above and make an intensity rating for your top reasons for losing weight, the cons of losing weight, the benefits of not losing weight, and any automatic thoughts about diet, exercise, or weight loss.

book cover for Don't Diet Reprogramming Your Weight With Meridian TappingNow you are ready to do some life-changing tapping. If you are having trouble getting started, consider checking out the book Don’t Diet: Reprogram Your Weight With Meridian Tapping.  It has 229 examples of tapping based on this process.  You can also keep reading the blog posts as I tackle some of my own food, diet, and exercise hang-ups.


Remember the basic formula.

  1. Make a statement that describes what needs to change.
  2. Rate the emotional intensity associated with that statement
  3. Repeat a setup statement or statements while tapping the karate chop point
  4. Tap on the meridians using the tapping points while using a reminder statement
  5. Repeat the original statement
  6. Rate the intensity again.

Your statements don’t have to be fancy.  The standard setup statement of –

“Even though (insert thought or feeling) I deeply and completely love and accept myself” –

Is a good one and works well.  Then for the reminder statement just say the thought or feeling at each point or shorten it to just a few key words.


For a video demonstrating the whole tapping process click here.


Happy Tapping.

Preparing for Weight Loss – New Year’s Resolution – Part II

Welcome back to our tapping about weight loss and getting ready to be successful in our New Year’s Resolutions.  Take out those lists from last time.  You should have a list of the top 10 reasons for wanting to change your weight and a list of the cons or down-side to weight loss.  Next we are going to consider the positive things we associate with being overweight.  I can hear everybody screaming that there is nothing positive, but stay with me.

Step Three:

If someone were to ask you what you get out of being overweight, you might be tempted to punch them.  Of course you don’t get anything out of being overweight – or do you? Being overweight does have advantages for some people.  Our excess weight can serve as a protection from other people or from our own sexuality.  Keeping the excess weight also allows us to maintain the status quo rather than risk the possibility of frustration and failure. For some people, being overweight serves as a connection to current family members and to generations past.  When you hear someone say “All of the women in my family have been heavy” that is a strong statement of identification that could be lost if the individual was to lose weight.  These conscious and unconscious benefits of being overweight can have a tremendous impact on your energy system and can be sufficient to stop a weight loss effort.  Be brutally honest and write down the positive things that are associated with being overweight.

Step Four:

Automatic thoughts, often negative, are just that – automatic.  They pop into our minds and have a tremendous impact, not only on our current mood but also on our energy system.  What thoughts pop into your mind when you hear or think about the words diet, exercise, or weight loss? Write them down in as much detail as you possible can.

Put those lists back in a safe place. In the final article in this series we will use those lists to pull it all together into a very effective tapping plan to boost your success.

Preparing for Weight Loss – New Year’s Resolution – Part I

In preparation for New Year Resolutions about weight loss I thought I would give you some tools for increasing the probability of success.  This series will help you fine-tune your goals and get started with some success-building tapping. It is time for self-discovery.

What are your main reasons for wanting to change your weight?  Your answers will probably be similar to mind and to those of most of your friends.  The standard answers include things such as to be healthy, to look good at my next class reunion, so my doctor will get off my back about my weight, and so I can enjoy physical activity more easily.  Those are really good answers, but you will have more success if you can be even more specific about your reasons.  Check out these examples below.

General Reason Specific Reason
I want to be healthy So that my chest doesn’t hurt when I climb stairs
To look good at my next class reunion Because I want to see the look on Joe’s face when he realizes what he gave up when he dumped me
So my doctor will get off my back about weight To be eager to get on the scales instead of dreading ig
So I can enjoy physical activity more easily So I can fit in the swings when I go to the playground with my children


Step One:

On a piece of paper, or better yet it your tapping journal, list your top 10 reasons for wanting to change your weight.  Be as specific as you possible can.  Include as much information as it takes for you to get a clear image of what YOU really want.  This is not the time to write down things that you think you should want or what other people tell you that they want.  This is all about YOU.

Step Two:

This next exercise may be a bit more challenging.  What is the downside for you in changing your weight?  How can there be a downside? I can think of many.  Perhaps you are not looking forward to the feelings of deprivation that you are expecting.  Maybe you have concerns about the time it might take to prepare healthy meals or to exercise.  What about fear of failure?  Do you experience panic when considering how you are going to manage your moods if you don’t have food to rely upon?  It is time to identify at least 10 factors that you would consider the cons or negative side of changing your weight.  Write them down on that paper or in your tapping journal.

Wow, that was a lot of work.  Stay tuned.  The next article will continue this process of self-discovery.  Put your lists in a safe place so that you can find them easily.

Dirty Genes

Dirty Genes by Dr. Ben LynchDirty Genes: A Breakthrough Program to Treat the Root Cause of Illness and Optimize Your Health by Dr. Ben Lynch, is not an easy read, but I consider it well worth the effort. Whenever I see an article or book about genes or genetics I assume it will just be another fatalistic presentation about the futility of preventative medicine.  We are stuck with whatever genes our parents gave us at birth.

Fortunately this isn’t one of those books.  Dr. Lynch offers self-tests to get a basic idea of your health status since most people can’t afford or don’t know how to get a complete gene assessment, as well as things you can actually do to positive impact the gene expression and your health.

Is it hard? Not really, but it will take effort.  You really already know many of the solutions: better diet, more restful sleep, stress reduction strategies, and regular physical activity.  For those of us who haven’t optimized all of those things, or already are showing signs of chronic illness, supplements to modify gene expression are also recommended.

There are recipes included, and the ones I have tried so far are pretty good and not terribly difficult.  Unlike some “healthy” recipes I’ve found elsewhere, Dr. Lynch’s recipes didn’t even include strange ingredients I have never heard of or wouldn’t know where to buy.

Since most of us plan to start 2019 with a resolution for better health, give this book a try.  It would be a great foundational plan for the new year.

Pre-Performance Jitters

MicrophoneI love music.  I have always enjoyed singing.  I have usually also suffered from pre-performance jitters.  Sometimes the excitement can improve my performance, but other times it really interferes.  This tapping demonstrates using tapping to not only reduce the immediate jitters, but also to reinforce visualizations of optimal performance.


Holidays Are All About The Food

Christmas CupcakesI’m sure I’m not alone in associating holidays and food.  Sometimes it seems that for me the holidays are all about the food.  I just made it through Thanksgiving without completely sabotaging my health with food, but it wasn’t easy.  I’m already thinking ahead about Christmas.  My house is decorated and the next thing that popped into my mind was what kind of cookies I wanted to bake.  If I only baked them, then gave them away it would be one thing, and that may be what I do, but it isn’t really what I was thinking and feeling.  Don’t get me wrong, food isn’t the only thing I associate with holidays, but it is a very powerful association for me and a real danger point for my health and well-being.

illustration for karate chop pointSetup (karate chop point): Every time I think about the holidays I get images of food.  I wish I didn’t.  I would much prefer to associate holidays with something other than food.  Even though I have this unwanted association between holidays and food, I choose to love myself anyway.  Even though I have this unwanted association between holidays and food, I choose to accept my feelings.  Even though I have these unwanted associations between the holidays and food, I choose to accept myself anyway and to remember that I am a work in progress.

diagram of the tapping pointsEyebrow…Food and holiday celebrations go together

Side of Eye…IF you took the food away I don’t know what would be left

Under the Eye…Unfortunately, most holiday foods aren’t very good for me

Under the Nose…And overeating seems to be the norm

Chin…It doesn’t feel like the holiday without cheesy goodness.   Mmmm cheese balls and crackers

Collarbone…It is not a real holiday without cookies and candies.  Mmmm homemade caramels and gingerbread

Under the Arm…It doesn’t feel like the holiday without appetizers and snacks.  Mmmm caramel pop corn

Top of Head…There has been so much focus on the food that I don’t know what else to do to get that warm nostalgic feeling

Hot ChocolateEyebrow…Even though food equals holiday for me

Side of Eye…I choose to look for new symbols to make myself feel good

Under the Eye…Even though I seem to have always focused on the food

Under the Nose…I choose to focus more on the people and relationships

Chin…Even though food has always been a huge part of the holiday for me

Collarbone…I choose to find other ways to have fun

Under the Arm…I am afriad that without the food it just won’t seem right

Top of Head…But I choose to find other ways to celebrate

Eyebrow…I love and accept my thoughts about this

Side of Eye…I love and accept my feelings about this

Under the Eye…I love and accept my willingness to learn new ways of celebrating

Under the Nose…I am open to clarity about my relationship with food

Chin…I am open to clarity about my relationship with the holidays

Collarbone…I chose to enjoy food

Under the Arm…Without making it the most important part of my holiday

Top of Head…I am looking forward to embracing my new and improved holiday celebrations

This tapping, and others like it, can be found in Don’t Diet.

Happy Tapping.

Focus on The Task


I’m sure most of us would at first resist the idea of an ant as our totem or spirit animal.  Animals that are either cut, fierce, or cuddly come more easily to mind.  Consider this, the ant can carry a leaf many miles to get back to the ant hill.  This is a reminder to us to keep focused on the end result, even if the task is slow or deliberate.

illustration for karate chop pointSetup (karate chop point): I know it is important to get the job done, to focus on the task, but sometimes it is easy to get distracted by other things.  Even though I sometimes get sidetracked or lose focus on the task, I am willing for this to change.  It’s really bad when the task is repetitive or if I can’t see progress right away.  Even though this sometimes happens, I choose to re-focus as soon as possible. Right now, I really need to be more task focused and I choose to accept myself while working toward this goal.

diagram of the tapping pointsEyebrow…This task needs to be done

Side of Eye…It is my responsibility to get it done

Under the Eye…I need to pull my own weight

Under the Nose…When I get distracted

Chin…It means other people have to pick up my slack

Collarbone…Or  progres toward completion gets slowed

Under the Arm…I really don’t want to contribute to that

Top of Head…This task is repetitive. Over and over and over.

Eyebrow…And I choose to focus on getting it done

Side of Eye…This job is pretty boring

Under the Eye…And I choose to do my part anyway

Under the Nose…I’m not seeing much progress

Chin…But I can persevere

Collarbone…I choose to stay focused on the goal

Under the Arm…Getting this done is my goal

Top of Head…Done can be Fun!

Are there times in your life that you wish you had used more ant characteristics like teamwork and perseverance?  Continue tapping while recalling those times and events.  Tapping while recalling specific events is very effective.

The Christmas Cookies Are Calling Me

Colorful Christmas CookiesWe have entered a season of baked goods.  Christmas cookies, candies, cakes, and nut breads will be everywhere.  I swear to you that the Christmas cookies call my name.  The tapping exercise below was one of my favorites from Don’t Diet and it seems appropriate as we approach this food-laden holiday season.

illustration for karate chop pointSetup (tapping the karate chop point): Those Christmas cookies are calling my name.  “Eat me!”  I’m sure you must hear them.  I’m feeling powerless to resist and that bothers me somewhat.  On the other hand, there is a part of me that hopes I will give in.  That conflict between giving in and resisting takes an awful lot of energy.  Even though I feel like the cookies are calling me, I choose to remember that I have options.  Even though a part of me wants to give in, I choose to remember my long-term plans.  Even though  part of me wants to resist, I choose to remember that one cookie wouldn’t be such a bad thing.  I have choices.  I have power.  I love and accept myself, no matter which choice I make.


diagram of the tapping pointsEyebrow…Those Christmas Cookies

Side of Eye…I really want one, or two, or twelve

Under the Eye…That is the problem

Under the Nose…I’m not sure I can stop at just one

Chin…And if I give in to one

Collarbone…I’m likely to eat the whole batch

Under the Arm…One cookie would make me feel good

Top of Head…Several would make me feel sick

Eyebrow…And a whole batch would make me feel like a failure

Side of Eye…Cookies don’t really talk

Under the Eye…They aren’t calling me

Under the Nose…I am choosing to focus on the fact that they exist

book cover for Don't Diet Reprogramming Your Weight With Meridian TappingChin…That is a choice I am making

Collarbone…I could get busy with something else

Under the Arm…They will still be there later

Top of Head…It’s not a choice I have to make right now

Eyebrow…It might be interesting to see if I still hear them after a warm bath

Side of Eye…Do I still hear them after a good workout?

Under the Eye…Are they as loud if I am playing a game?

Under the Nose…Cookies can’t control me

Chin…Sounds like I’m worried that I can’t control me either

Collarbone…Either decision I make is okay

Under the Arm…I choose to love myself, with or without the cookies

Top of Head…I choose to accept myself, with or without the cookies


Happy Tapping