Negative Affect Erasing Method
An excerpt from Energy Psychology: Explorations at the Interface of Energy, Cognition, Behavior and Health
Around 1995, I developed the Negative Affect Erasing Method (NAEM), (now called the MidLine Technique (MLT), which has been effective in the treatment of a variety of psychological problems. This method has been used to effectively treated trauma, phobias, anxiety, depression, and a number of other affect-based conditions. MLT appears deceptively simple, although expert utilization of the method requires practice and extensive clinical experience. It entails many of the same features that are common to other energy therapies. That is, various levels of psychological reversal, corrections for switching, “brain-balancing” treatments, and other stress-reduction procedures are included when necessary.
The four original MLT treatment points are as follows, although two points have been added since that time (GV-17 Back of Head (BOH) and GV-20 Top of Head (TOH):
|TE =||Third Eye Point, between the eyebrows. This is the GV 24.5 point on the Governing Vessel.|
|UN =||Under Nose. This point is also on the Governing Vessel at GV 26.|
|UL =||Under Bottom Lip. This point is on the Central Vessel at CV 24.|
|CH =||Chest. This point is also on the Central Vessel in the vicinity of CV 20, which is also above the thymus gland.|
The essential MLT protocol follows. However, this protocol is offered for educational purposes only and is not intended to serve as a stand-alone treatment that can be effectively done on a self-help basis. Generally, the assistance of a well-trained practitioner is needed in order to obtain adequate therapeutic results.
1. The client focuses on issue for which treatment is desired, such as a trauma, phobia, feeling depressed, etc. A specific issue with the specific negative emotion is the target of treatment.
2. Obtain a Subjective Units of Distress (SUD) rating, 1 to 10, with 1 representing an absence of negative affect and 10 indicating the highest level feasible to the individual.
3. The client taps repeatedly with two fingers of either hand between the eyebrows at the TE point, continuing to monitor the level of distress. Intermittently the therapist requests a SUD rating. (In some cases, especially with severe trauma, it is preferable to not have the client continue to think about the distressing issue while tapping at the treatment points. Rather, after an initial rating has been obtained, the entire sequence of treatment points is completed prior to reassessing the SUD.)
4. When the SUD level decreases by two or more points, the client taps about 7 times under the nose, the UN point.
5. Next the client taps about 7 times under the bottom lip, the UL point. 6. Next the client taps 15-20 times at the CH point on the chest at a frequency of approximately one tap per second. 7. After this phase of the treatment has been completed, another SUD rating is obtained. 8. If the SUD rating is significantly decreased, but not down to “1,” the procedure can be repeated, or the 9 Gamut treatments can be provided prior to repeating the procedure. 9. When the SUD is within the 1-3 range, the Floor to Ceiling Eye Roll (ER) can be used to reduce SUD further or to solidify results. In this case the sequence notation is as follows: TE–>UN–>UL–>CH–>ER.
10. Sometimes a client does not respond to the TE–>UN–>UL–>CH sequence. In such instances a variation of sequence has been found effective. The next most common sequence appears to be UN–>UL–>TE–>CH. In this instance, the UN and UL points are each tapped about 5-10 times before steadily tapping at the TE point and taking intermittent ratings. Other sequences can be explored for effectiveness with the individual subject. It should be noted, however, that repeating the basic sequence several times will often produce results, without having to adjust the sequence.
11. Psychological Reversals and Criteria-Related Reversals, as well as Switching (i.e., Neurologic Disorganization) can block progress with MLT, just as it can with TFT and EFT treatments. While this is rare, except with the more severe conditions, in such instances treatments for these facets must be provided in order to realize results.
12. Similar to any treatment procedure, the MLT is intended to alleviate the real-life problem. Therefore, even though the negative affect may be neutralized within the treatment session, performance in the person’s everyday life is what counts. In this respect it is often beneficial, after the SUD levels has been reduced to “1,” to have the subject think about (e.g., visualize if possible) various context in which the problem occurs and to repeat the MLT, again alleviating elevated SUD if present. However even if there is no elevated SUD when thinking about a specific context, a MLT trial should be provided, since the affect may be repressed at the time of treatment.
13. It is sometimes beneficial to introduce or instill a positive belief after the MLT has reduced the SUD to “1.” Often this occurs automatically, since negative beliefs appear to be affect-driven. That is, once the affect is discharged, the negative belief vanishes and is replaced by the opposite. However, in instances where this does not occur to the satisfaction of both therapist and client, having the client rehearse an antithesis while doing the MLT will help to solidify results. For example, a rape victim may have “decided” at the time of the trauma that she was “powerless.” After alleviating the distress of the trauma, it may prove beneficial to have the client create an antithetical statement of her own choosing, such as “I’m strong and I survived,” repeating this affirmation in her mind while repeating the MLT process.
14. In some instances it is beneficial for the MLT to be done in vivo after it has been provided in the clinic setting. This can be an aspect of treatment that is conducted by the client between sessions. Many clients experience this self-treatment aspect quite empowering.