Emotional Freedom Practices

The first caveat to say about any audio material is that you're going to have a personal reaction - good or bad - to the voice used. They've done numerous studies with GPSs and they find that a GPS whose vocal patterns tend to match the listener is most appreciated. That is, if you're a New Yorker, you tend to like a GPS that talks like a New Yorker. It's the way humans are. So I'm sure there are some people who will adore this author's voice and find it perfect for their needs. I found it to be sharp, dry, and detached. When someone is coaching me in the sensitive area of my emotions, I want them to sound warm and caring. So that's my preference and it's reasonable that others will have other reactions.

I listened through the CD set a few times to give it a fair time and I do have to say that as you become more familiar with her, almost "getting to know her", that the voice can grow on you.

Dr. Orloff steps you through how to deal with your emotions of fear, anger, disappointment, and other negative issues into supportive emotions. She both talks about how the negative emotions tend to occur and to provide ideas about ways to cope with them. One of her examples that stuck with me involved patience and lines. Let's say you tend to get agitated and angry when waiting in lines. Try instead to think of them as meditative learning times - and even deliberately allow someone to step in front of you sometime. See how happy they are! Over a little line-skip! Of course I chuckle when I hear this one each time because my mental image involves people *behind* me in line. I bet they won't be quite so pleased that I'm letting someone with a big cart of groceries come before everyone else. I think she probably meant that I had to be the last person in my line before I did this kind-hearted act.

Dr. Orloff's point is that our emotions are simply what we have trained ourselves over a period of time to feel in a situation. A line is neutral - it's neither good or bad! We can be peaceful and happy in the line, or we can be stressed. Why be stressed when we can be happy! Is it somehow 'better' to be stressed, or more beneficial to our health? Hardly!

You could say "well yes but sometimes other people are doing things to cause you stress." To this I would rebut with the famous Eleanor Roosevelt quote, "No one can make you feel inferior without your consent." That is, sure other people will do all sorts of annoying and idiotic and troublesome things. That's what they do. You can't change them. What you *can* change is how you conduct your own world within your own brain. You have complete influence over your own emotions and reactions and thoughts.

Relatives can be troublesome. Of course they can! Look at all the movies and books and plays involving troublesome relatives. For any story you have, literature has situations that are far worse. These things happen and are normal. You can't wish yourself into an imaginary ideal family with no conflict at all. However you can change your own view of the situation and how you choose to react to the drama. You can learn to be at peace with yourself and your choices, whatever the random roller-coasters of the world around you might do.

Are there down sides here, beside the voice? Well, I have to say that I had a few people listen to parts with me and the voice did put them off. So be aware that that might be a hurdle that you personally don't feel like overcoming. Also, some people might find the information simplistic. "Sure, I should be less angry at my really annoying brother who drives me absolutely insane. But HOW do I do that??" The CD gives you a few tools but not a great number, and it doesn't delve into them in great detail. It might have been far better to make a single CD all about family problems for example. Talk about a variety of family problems, about the different types of dynamics, and then provide a number of ideas for addressing each one. That way a person who has a problem comes away with a real hope for finding success.

That is, I think most people who pick up this CD don't need long descriptions of why it's not good to get stressed when family members do insane things. I think most listeners *know* they don't want to get stressed and wish there was a way not to get stressed. The CD tries to cover too much ground with the background and the why-you-should-change (which we don't really need) and not enough on the "here is what to do" (which we desperately want).

Still, there is good material here, and it can be enough to get someone on the right path and taking those first steps.


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