A question I have received many times is some variation of the following:
“what if this technique ends up being another one that ends up not working for me?”
This question was especially common when I was primarily under the umbrella of a process called “Inner Reconciliation” as a facilitator. Those who approached me were often expecting everything we did, or discussed ,to fall into the framework of that technique.
The mindset going in: I hope IR is different, I hope this is the one that works.
I immediately found this to be a limiting place to start from.
When you invest a lot of time, money, and energy into a technique only to not see the results you were hoping for, it’s a major drag.
Expectations are Tricky
The higher your expectations are going in, the worse of a blow you take when the reality doesn’t match the idealized image in your mind. What once may have served as a powerful motivator can quickly turn into a major disappointment, perhaps making you even less motivated and curious than you were before the process even began.
When I was younger, I would get excited that that the new method of letting-go or visualization code #5192 was going to be my secret cheat code to unlocking musical super powers, making money, overcoming shyness, or whatever else was a priority at the time.
Sometimes those expectations came from the marketing, stories of others, or my own mind.
The vast majority of the tools I learned actually were useful, some highly effective, but it was easy to get really “into” the tool more than my own unique self and how it fit into the picture.
So, what to do when you are looking at studying, learning, or applying a new technique?
Will THIS one finally be the one to work for you?
If you ask someone who is attached to a particular method, the answer is likely to be a list of reasons why one particular approach is better, and why it is guaranteed to work for you because it simply *works.*
I know that I would have given an answer like that, about different techniques, at different phases of my development.
These days, I believe it is perfectly fine to have skepticism about a modality working for you, especially at first, and to never abdicate all of your authority to a process.
I am a proponent of shifting the perspective of this question entirely.
How do you feel about not making ANY technique or modality the focal point of your goal or intention?
I am referring to the mindset of “I will try this one out, and hope it works.”
From that perspective of trying-on a technique, it becomes binary: maybe it will work, maybe it won’t.
First of all what it means for it to “work” is extremely personal. We need to take the time and introspection to get a sense of clarity of what that means for us. What are we actually looking to have happen?
This seems to require an honesty, and often a sense of diligence, that can take time to cultivate.
Knowing what it means to “work” takes tuning into what the unedited, straight-forward desire is actually driving your pursuit, learning not to judge it, fully accepting the honest answer as best you can.
Perhaps most importantly, not to twist it into the “better, more spiritual” sounding version of a particular philosophy or technique tells you is supposed to be your goal. If you want this to help you make more money, or feel better physically, own it, and judge honestly whether it is helping you or not.
The Idealized Version of a Technique’s Effectiveness
Sometimes we think of a technique “working” meaning “solved all the problems in my life.”
At my current place in life, I suggest throwing this out the window.
EFT is not going to fix ‘everything’ just by tapping on any issue that pops up.
Non-Dual inquiry or more spiritual approaches are not going to ‘solve all problems’ in the way we often are looking for it to do. It can also create a trap where you have falsely convinced yourself you are above-it-all and leave glaring issues unaddressed.
No matter the technique, it will go through your filters
There is also our own interpretations of the technique, how we are hearing the instructions, what we think it is supposed to do or what is supposed to happen, and so on.
There is no escaping this. A teacher can give 20 people the exact same instructions, and each will hear them differently, potentially projecting an enormous amount of meaning and expectation on what the result is supposed to be. I have seen, as well as done this many times, on both sides of the dynamic.
There is a lot of wiggle room there, and a lot of potential for “yet another technique that didn’t work.”
Self-knowledge, Fundamentals > Technique
If your objective is to get to know yourself better and better, how you think, feel, what resonates with you, what doesn’t, where directing your energy and attention yields a positive direction, finding what is worth committing to based on that, your success is inevitable.
You are far too interesting to fit neatly into any concept or technique perfectly.
Also, the more closely you examine different techniques that DO work for you, that are helpful in creating a shift, letting go of held emotions or beliefs, you will find there are more fundamental elements there.
It’s often the internal posture, the way you are approaching something, a willingness to question or bring something into consciousness, more than it is the specific words or format.
If the specific words and format enhance things for you, great, but the fundamentals behind them and how YOU experience it is, is worthy of deeper exploration than getting lost in theory and detail of a technique.
This is a big part of why I am calling what I do “inner work coaching.” At least for now I feel it is important to not be too tightly aligned to any technique or principle, as I have without exception seen non-useful examples of them devolving into groupthink and sound byte answers to questions that require our own introspection and answers.
Any technique such as IR or EFT is simply something that can, or parts of can be used if they feel useful.
It might be helpful to look at any technique, anyone you listen to, study with, etc. from this lens, where you yourself are the primary interest and they are simply to be examined in how they might help (or not) in that process.
I hope you find this helpful, and will put a little less pressure on yourself, or on any technique, and realize more and more that all any technique does is direct your attention to a power that always was and always will be part of YOU.