Perks and Pitfalls of Swapping Sessions with other EFT Practitioners
As a master EFT trainer for over 14 years, I’ve made the recommendation to hundreds of the students I train to begin tapping as soon as possible. At the end of a workshop everyone is encouraged to take the roster containing everyone’s contact information (with permission of course) and immediately reach out to their fellow students to being practicing all the skills they learned over the last 3-4 days. The practice sessions during a training are but a facsimile of what “real life” EFT sessions are like. Committing to practicing with one another afterwards is an easy way to retain the skills that were just learned. I’ve decided to put together some of the best practices for swap sessions based on my own experience of swapping with many colleagues, as well as what my students have reported worked and hadn’t worked.
- Set up a call to discuss logistics
There’s no way to know how sessions will go with a fellow student or practitioner-in-training until you actually have a session with them. If you have a conversation ahead of time to discuss expectations such as how often you wish to meet for sessions, whether you want to arrange a regular time/day of the week, and how you will meet (over phone, FaceTime, Skype, Zoom, in person, etc). Clarifying your intention and any needs you have regarding your swap relationship is best done in advance. I recommend that in advance you discuss your expectations and come to an agreement from the outset that if for whatever reason, either party chooses to discontinue the swap at any time that this is absolutely acceptable by both people and no harm, no foul committed.
- Commit to only a limited number of sessions and then debrief how things went before committing to a longer swap
Craig and I have done this different ways. He typically commits to one session where takes on the role of EFT practitioner and then one where he is the client and then has a separate debriefing conversation with his partner to discuss how it went for both partners and whether they both wish to continue and make a commitment to continue the swap. I like to have 3 sessions each way and then have that conversation. In that debriefing we acknowledge that this won’t affect our personal relationship but we need to be honest about what worked in the session and what didn’t when we were the client. I’ve been told by swap partners that they wanted me to slow down the pace of the tapping or that they preferred a different set up phrase, or that they liked the Matrix Reimprinting we did or that they didn’t care for it. These are typically things that a regular client may not have told me because they see me as the expert. Someone who has had years and years of tapping has often developed preferences and sometimes even unique ways of doing certain things in a session.
- Scheduling and cancelling ongoing swap sessions
Nothing is more exhausting than going back and forth with emails or calls trying to block out time for appointments. In the EFT MBA Marketing and Business Academy program, we recommend getting an Acuity Scheduler account https://tinyurl.com/y8pkl2z5 It only takes a few minutes to set up, it works with Google Calendar so you can block and add times from your calendar app and you can either add the link to your website or email it to your swap partner so they can see your availability. Also make sure that you start to behave like a professional not only by creating a scheduler but also keeping to your word and keep rescheduling and cancelling to an absolute minimum.
- The client is “almost” always right!
When it comes to which points to tap, where to start tapping and end tapping or style of reminder phrases, whether to tap on one side or both…you should ideally be following the lead of your client. Your practice swap session client will feel out of sync if you tap on the top of head at the end of the round and that person instead always starts there. You need to get in the habit of following your clients on things like this, so you may as well start now. If you and your client are both students and one of you insists on doing something that wasn’t what you recall learning in your training, then instead of ignoring it, I recommend you stop and figure it out together by both of you looking through your training material or asking your mentor. I know it might stop the flow of the session but these are practice sessions with a fellow student who may actually be doing something wrong or even dangerous. You owe it to yourself and anyone else that person ends up working with in the future, to do it correctly. You may want to actually talk about the potential of this happening in your initial call or meeting.
- Do not offer unsolicited “advice or opinions” in the middle of a session
By far the biggest complaint we hear of is from our students who work with other students who are not trained by us and they insist as the practitioner to offer their advice during their EFT sessions. A poorly created or prematurely practitioner offered “re-frame” (when the SUDs is above a 3) aka “positive tapping” ends up feeling like the practitioner’s opinion and it needs to stay out of your sessions. We don’t even teach reframing (other than Sneaking Away) until level 3 for many reasons and feel that new practitioners need to master the material in level 1-2 first. If your student practitioner has not taken level 3 then again you owe it to yourself, as well as everyone that practitioner will eventually work with, to ask them to refrain.
- Be mindful when you bring up the concept of resistance or self-sabotage with your swap partner (or client for that matter)
We spend a lot of time in mentoring and in workshops discussing the do’s and don’ts of bringing up the concept of self-sabotage (aka Psychological Reversal). The best way to address it, is for the client to discover this and bring it up on their own. You should only bring it up after you have sufficiently established rapport and only when framed as “an unconscious” mechanism. For example you might offer, “It’s interesting that you were getting better and better with each session but now the pain is back. You know, sometimes we might not have all parts of ourselves on board with the healing that’s happening. Even if consciously we think we are 100% ready for healing some small unconscious part of us may not yet feel ready, or safe enough with the outcome and may not be okay with it. Can we explore what that part might need?” There are times when it’s okay to take a more direct approach. That might be when the client says something like, “I must have some secondary gain going on around this issue because I’ve had it for so long, I’d like your help in figuring this out.” My EFT and Matrix practitioners that hire me as their coach will nearly always be ready for exploring from the outset but again, I wait for it to show up organically. Doing otherwise can only lead to a client feeling blamed for not “getting over it” already.
So I hope this suggestions and insights that I have gained over the years can support and assist you in creating long term, rewarding and nourishing swap relationships whether you are new to EFT or have been tapping for years. For those who are newer to EFT, the value of having a regular tapping swap partner can be a goldmine of healing and will go a long way to keep you on course with your Personal Peace Procedure and healing journey.
Accredited Certified Master Trainer of Trainers