Many veterans gave up hope a long time ago, that healing is possible for them. They have tried everything there was to try, done treatments and medications, were locked in for periods of time, did whatever they could do to release their trauma – often with very little results.
The trauma they have endured doesn’t seem to be curable. For the sake of rapport, I like to replace the word “healing”” with “relaxing”.
It might be hard to imagine that we can heal a traumatic memory. But if we could “relax about it”, that would be desirable and more within reach.
Many have deserving issues around the word healing, as they want to take charge for what happened in war. But if they could allow themselves to relax anyway, that would be within reach of what is appropriate and OK.
They see value in relaxing about something that happened a long time ago. They can understand how this relaxation can help them sleep. Being relaxed can keep intrusive thoughts at bay and make hyper vigilance easier to deal with. There is great value for them in being able to function, doing something meaningful with their life, and taking on a new place in society where they might even be able to help others through their experiences.
EFT is a very powerful tool to help a Veteran relax. When suggesting some set up statements, I like to add the word “surprising”. Here are some examples:
“Even though I feel so tense and keyed up about what happened that day in Iraq, I allow myself to feel surprisingly relaxed about it now.”
“Even though I can’t possible consider that I deserve healing, I allow myself to relax anyway.”
“Even though nothing has ever worked, and I don’t believe in healing, I choose to feel surprisingly relaxed anyway.”
This kind of tapping establishes a new reality in the mind that the Veteran can then begin to explore and fill out in a way that feels good and right to him or her.”