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When time does not heal wounds: is chronic pain unresolved grief?

Updated: Oct 7, 2022

One of EFT’s primary tenets is that memories are held in the body. When we experience a traumatic event, the flight, fight or freeze response is a common reaction to the shock flooding our system. Science tells us that animals like zebras literally shake off this fear after a near miss with a predator. But we humans rarely find the time to shake off and fully process our feelings after a stressful experience. This may be due to a lack of awareness of the need to do so, feeling the need to hold ourselves together in front of others, or just the demands of life continuing to pile up.

These circumstances allow our minds to forget but not our bodies, and over time these unresolved memories may show up as chronic pain, headaches or tension. Often people have detached from the original source event and may no longer remember the root cause. EFT Tapping helps to reconnect to these unprocessed memories by giving them a voice and allowing them to move through the body.

Clients often say “I’m sure this memory has nothing to do with what’s going on”, or “I have no idea why this is coming up right now”, when it’s usually spot on and the exact memory that needs addressing. Our rational adult minds scoff at and judge these minor events that our subconscious minds reveal, and we need to trust the inner wisdom that is guiding us to acknowledge them.

Grief, loss, and unmet needs are common themes lurking underneath chronic pain. We bury feelings deep in our bodies and eventually our capacity to manage the stress manifests as physical pain. When there is no physical injury present, healing the emotional aspects of these wounds can bring much-needed relief. Gentle and compassionate tapping can allow these source memories to be safely revisited and accepted as part of our human experience.

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