In a recent Emotional Freedom Techniques EFT tapping session with a Highly Sensitive Person, they wanted to work on their anger of having eaten four ice cream sandwiches the night before, even though they didn’t want any. They couldn’t stop them self from stuffing one down after the other. They remembered that they were angry about a comment that their partner had made. They had used the ice cream sandwiches to stuff down the anger.
As we used EFT tapping, they noticed that they were angry at them self for always stuffing down their feelings with food. Eating is their only way to deal with anger.
This revealed that they are always desperate to keep their anger inside and pushed away, as they were afraid of expressing their anger and hurting others. The thought of hurting others repulses them. They would rather hurt them self than others. “I don’t know any other way, to deal with my anger,” they said. Their stomach was burning and hurting, yet they had kept eating things that hurt them.
As we tapped on the feelings of burning anger in their stomach, they said that they felt like throwing up. That they felt like an erupting volcano, who destroys everything. “ I stuff down all my anger with food and then I erupt in a conversation and all past, undigested anger is expressed.”
This leads to long battles, a recitation of all past hurts and opening of old wounds. It accomplishes nothing but strengthening their belief that they hurt people when they express their anger. The anger turned into sadness when they noticed, they felt like there’s no other way to deal with their anger.
Highly Sensitive People can recount tiny details of past hurts and exact words spoken, having analyzed them again and again. Turning their ability to process and analyze subtle details against them and hurting them self in the process.
How can those old patterns be changed?
If you are unclear what the other person meant, avoid interpreting their words, by asking for clarification. Often we hear and perceive words quite differently than they were meant.
Many times this diffuses a potential argument quickly.
When you focus on the specific hurtful comment and acknowledge how you feel about it, you are less likely to drag other past hurts into the present conversation.Try to avoid the temptation, even if it is very difficult.
Often, there is a need to examine your feelings in private before continuing a conversation. It’s okay to ask for time out to think about your feelings around the issue.
Notice your inner dialogue. “They always” or “they never” can be signs that there are some similar unresolved issues. Make a mental note to look at them later. I find EFT tapping very helpful to deal with them.
Be patient with yourself as your awareness is shifting and changing. Being gentle, kind and understanding with yourself when you automatically fall into old behaviours, helps you to incorporate these steps easier.
When you address feelings as soon as you become aware of them, you stop adding more to the unresolved pile, and slowly but surely resolve some of the old ones as well. One issue, one feeling at a time.
Text and picture by Karin Goldgruber