How I Use Face Tapping To De-Stress, Fight Wrinkles, and Sleep Better
If asked to describe myself, I’d tell you in many ways I’m a pretty laid back person. I’m low-maintenance; I seek out positive vibes from life and try to share them back. But another big part of me internalizes a ton of stress. I have always had high expectations for myself.
For example, in the third grade our school was having a field day and I was lined up for the 100-yard dash. I wanted so badly to win and when the whistle blew, I took off, well ahead of the pack. But in the last few yards, Jenny Farmer burst past me to win the blue ribbon. Emotions that were too big for me swelled up inside like a dark thundercloud and spilled over as I sobbed and sobbed. I was so disappointed that I’d let myself down.
Thirty-some years later, I’ve grown into those emotions a little better, like a girl whose feet finally fit into her mom’s high-heeled shoes.
But I still have incredibly high expectations of myself. If I’m working on a project, I want it to be the best project and I will think about it constantly, plan it in my mind start to finish, and stress over it until every muscle in my face is tense and I’ve got a killer headache brewing. When something is broken, I need to be able to fix it. If there’s a problem at work, I can’t rest until it’s resolved. When one of my kids are sick or going through some difficulty, I lie awake at night, thinking about it and losing sleep. My mind is always on and it’s hard to turn it off.
Like many of you, I over-think, over-analyze, and over-stress more than I should. Personally, I feel all of those negative emotions in my face, especially right between my eyes. So if you’ve got an over-active mind that manifests as tension in the head and face, I think I have something that will help. It’s called face tapping.
What is Face Tapping?
I first learned about face tapping during my first year teaching. With all of the planning and pressures of creating brand new curriculum for seven high school classes, I was feeling the stress. One day at lunch, a veteran teacher was talking about how she uses face tapping to ease tension. As she demonstrated tapping certain points on her face, I was intrigued. That night I went home and researched face tapping and tried it out. I’ve been using it ever since to help me de-stress, fight wrinkles, and sleep better.
Face tapping, or EFT (Emotional Freedom Techniques) is a method where you use your fingertips to tap on key energy points on your head, face, and collar bones. These key energy points are based on the traditional Chinese medicinal belief that the body’s has an energy, or “ch’i.” Face tapping is very similar to acupuncture, but can be done at home and without the use of needles.
Negative emotions, like anxiety, hurt, anger, worry, and stress all affect our overall wellness. A lot of us feel these emotions in our head and face. By tapping your face in a few strategic places, you can diffuse stress almost immediately.
Face tapping involves seven main tapping points: 1) the top of the head, 2) the medial points of the eyebrows, 3) the lateral sides of the eyes, 4) under the eyes, 5) under the nose, 6) the chin, and 7) the medial points of the collar bone.
How I Use Face Tapping
When I’m feeling especially stressed or have a hard time getting to sleep at night because of an overactive mind, I use face tapping. I take the tip of my middle finger and start at the EFT energy point on the very top of my head. I tap on all the main face tapping points (see above diagram) and end at my collar bones tapping three times with the tip of my middle finger on each point.
It sounds crazy, but something about it completely works. For me, the physical act of tapping on tense facial muscles helps relax them. Tapping on each energy point helps calm my nerves and draw my attention away from external distractions, instead focusing on my body, my breathing.
Again, it’s crazy until you try it.
When I Use Face Tapping
1.To De-Stress: When I’m stressed out about work, responsibilities, or kids, I use face tapping . Even taking five minutes to find a quiet room and tap on all the energy points a few times helps.
2. To Fight Wrinkles: Aside from protecting your skin and using anti-aging products, you can actually use EFT tapping to combat wrinkles. I use it especially on my forehead where all of my “worry lines” seem to appear. Tapping relaxes tense muscles and invigorates them.
3. To Sleep Better: The moment that I lay down for bed is when my mind starts gearing up. Some nights I’ll lie there for an hour or two just thinking of all the things I need to do. When that happens, I use face tapping to chill myself out. It’s the funniest thing, but it calms me down and clears my mind for sleep.
Still skeptical about face tapping? I was too, until I tried it. Now, I’m a believer. If you’re a worrier, an over-thinker, or just want to invite a little calm into your life, give face tapping a try. It’s cheaper than acupuncture or therapy and a lot less scary too.