Instant Emotional Healing:  Acupressure for the Emotions

Peter Lambrou, Ph.D., and George Pratt, Ph.D
Broadway Books, 2000
$25.00, ISBN 0-7679-0392-7


IMAGINE A PSYCHOLOGICAL technique capable of healing deep-seated emotional pain, fears, phobias, and lifelong negative habits in a matter of minutes, and often without the need for therapeutic assistance. For most people,especially those familiar with traditional talk therapy, the possibility that such a technique could exist might sound too good to be true, even absurd.

Drs. Lambrou and Pratt, who developed the technique known as Emotional Self-Management (ESM), say that theirs is just such a technique, and that it has achieved a 95% success rate in rapidly relieving both acute and chronic psychological problems. Moreover, the process involved in ESM is self-administered and can be learned without the aid of a therapist. Instant Emotional Healing is the guide for learning how to do so.

Both authors are conventionally trained and licensed clinical staff psychologists at Scripps Memorial Hospital in La Jolla, California. They say they developed ESM after becoming frustrated with the limitations posed by more established psychotherapy techniques for relieving their patients’ emotional pain. As the authors point out, “Many times, the best psychology can do is help people suffer more effectively.”

Initially skeptical about healing techniques outside of the mainstream, Lambrou and Pratt became intrigued by the success they were able to achieve using hypnosis and EMDR (Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing), a technique effective for dealing with post-traumatic stress disorder. Eventually their curiosity led them to explore a new therapeutic specialty known as Thought Field Therapy (TFT). Derived from ancient Chinese theories on bioenergy, TFT combines Western cognitive therapeutic approaches with Eastern acupressure techniques. In many cases it has provided nearly instantaneous relief from distressing emotional problems without the need for talk therapy or counseling. The two doctors sought a method that would empower others to achieve similar results on their own, and ultimately they developed the ESM methods. They claim that they have achieved a 95% success rate resolving the emotional problems of over 6,000 of their patients using this technique.

ESM is based on the premise that energy, thoughts, emotions, and the body are interrelated and operate as an intelligent, fully communicating system. “Emotions, in this framework, are believed to result from the influence of electromagnetic energy created by our thoughts, and the electrical and chemical changes that occur within the body,” the authors explain. ESM works by unblocking what the authors describe as “trapped emotional feedback patterns within that system.”
The combined process of tapping acupoints and reconnecting with troubling emotions allows trapped emotions to flow freely
This is accomplished through a specific set of protocols that stimulate the acupuncture meridian system, specifically meridian points associated with emotions. In that regard, ESM is similar to NAET, the allergy-elimination protocols developed by Dr. Devi Nambudripad (see Alternative Medicine, issue number 29, May/June 1999).

The protocol calls for tapping relevant acupuncture points (using one’s fingers) and simultaneously envisioning one’s emotional problems. According to the authors, this combined process of tapping acupoints and reconnecting with troubling emotions enables the mind-body to clear away energy blockages, allowing trapped emotions to flow freely, while restoring physical, mental, and emotional balance.  ESM also incorporates imagery and visualization techniques derived from the authors’ background as clinical hypnotists. Thought-focusing components of cognitive therapy and “balanced breathing” exercises that help align the body’s electromagnetic field are also part of the therapy.  “Once the techniques are mastered,” Drs. Lambrou and Pratt write, “the entire ESM protocol frequently takes less than ten minutes to perform.”

ESM is easy to use and the results produced are significant.  The authors have worked with clients to totally eradicate habitual patterns of anxiety, anger and rage, emotional trauma, grief, guilt, heartache, jealousy, panic attacks, deep-rooted shame, and a wide range of phobic and other conditions. In addition to eliminating unproductive distress, ESM can also be used to enhance confidence, mental focus, performance goals, and a healthy self-image. This aspect of ESM, known as “The Optimizer,” has been used by athletes, actors, business people, and public speakers to achieve greater degrees of success in their respective fields. The authors caution, however, that ESM is not intended to replace professional care necessary for treating serious conditions such as substance abuse, eating disorders, schizophrenia, bipolar disorders, or major depression.

<em>Instant Emotional Healing</em> outlines the theory, techniques, and application of ESM in a manner that anyone can understand. The authors lay the foundation for how to apply ESM for self-care using photographs, illustrations, step-by-step instructions, and offering revealing and inspiring case histories.

Part I provides an overview of the research on which ESM is based and ESM’s many theories and applications, including basic techniques. Part II discusses the role that emotions play in our lives, including how and why emotional energies become stuck and out of balance.  A hands-on approach for determining your stress level and a potent stress relief technique are also explained. In Part III, the reader is introduced to the various emotion-specific ESM protocols for 28 emotions. Detailed instructions help the reader determine which protocols to use and how to apply them. Finally, in Part IV, ESM techniques geared to increase productivity and performance are shared, along with guidelines for teaching and administering ESM to others, including children. The comprehensive  Resource and Recommended Reading sections steer readers to material on aspects of Thought Field Therapy.

Drs. Lambrou and Pratt predict that, within the next decade, the various applications of ESM and TFT in general will become a standard approach for health care professionals and anyone interested in optimum performance. Fortunately, readers choosing to apply the revolutionary techniques revealed in Instant Emotional Healing won’t have to wait that long to enjoy the benefits ESM can provide.