Ok, ready for an easy one? This week, try to increase the number of times you say the two simple words “right now”.
Remember that one of the more important things we do in EFT is to bring emotion alive in the present moment so that we can work with it in the here and now. “Present Process” is, after all, the first step of the EFT Tango (see earlier post). We need our couples to experience the cycle, to experience their pain, their longing, their fears, their blocks right now, in session. Just giving lip service to feeling sad, or just talking about what they felt last week isn’t enough—even if they are yelling about how last week they were so ANGRY!! (emotion is clearly in the room—probably more than you’d like—but we aren’t working in the present moment yet. To bring it into the present we could say, “I know, even right now as you tell me about it, the anger is so big!! I can feel it with you right now!”)
Using “right now” will give you powerful, and sometimes surprising, results. First, it brings clients out of a more cognitive place (i.e. reporting on last week or trying to remember how they felt yesterday). Second, It could help someone explore the primary emotion underneath the secondary emotion (i.e. I might say, “I felt a pang of sadness right now as you talked about your anger and frustration…. can you help me, I’m wondering if you might also be feeling a little bit of sadness along with your frustration?”)
It could also deepen a primary emotion: I remember one particular withdrawer, who was talking about her sadness, and I could feel how much energy she was using to not be sad, not to let it out. I simply asked her, “Can you feel that sadness right now?” It was like a dam broke. Her face crumpled and the sadness welled up and out of her. I will never forget that important, poignant moment. It was the first time she had really let herself feel that sadness. Her partner, as you can imagine, was stunned (in a good way). I think that was the moment I realized the power in those two little words.
Asking about “right now” may also highlight a block, as in “What’s happening for you right now as you struggle to tell your wife how much she means to you?” Finally, it never ceases to amaze me when I ask a composed-looking client “What is happening for you right now (as you look at your wife…)”, and they bravely let me in to their fear, their sadness, the knot in their stomach that lies underneath their buttoned-up exterior.
So this week, play with using the words “right now” as an simple way to bring your session into the present moment.