Surrogate is defined as: “somebody as substitute: somebody who acts as a replacement for somebody else.”
When we do surrogate tapping, we are tapping for somebody else. This can be useful when we want to help an infant or young child, a pet or other animal, those who are ill, and those incapable of tapping for themselves.
The most important part of surrogate tapping, and the step most people like to rush or skip over, is to first and foremost tap on yourself for any feelings, fears, or negative beliefs you have about the issue.
Because so many people find it easier to avoid self-examination (after all, it is the OTHER person who has the problem), some EFT Tapping practitioners tell people not to do surrogate tapping.
For example, if I were a mother with a 7-year-old son who never cleaned up his room, and I tried to tap on him to make him clean his room without tapping on my stuff first, I probably won’t see results. In fact, if my son were energetically sensitive and could tell I was trying to force him to be cleaner, I might find him reacting by becoming MORE messy and resentful.
If I tapped on my issues around his mess, and cleared my own “gotcha’s” (for example… I don’t feel safe unless the house is organized… I feel like I have to do it if he doesn’t… It feels like he doesn’t respect me and all that I do), and accepted myself and my son no matter what his room looked like, I have a lot more clarity emotionally and energetically.
I may find that once I’ve released those feelings that I don’t mind if he wants to be cluttered as long as it’s hygienic. I may be able to set clear boundaries with him about what is acceptable.
And I may even find, once I’m no longer “needing” him to clean up in order for me to feel okay, that he simply doesn’t have such a messy room any longer.
A lot of people that do their own work first find they never need to surrogate tap for the other person!
There are times when we can offer support and help to those who want it… times when some tapping and good thoughts can make the world of difference.
One of the keys to tapping is the acceptance and love we send. So by clearing our own energy first, we are able to accept and love the other person as they are.
That acceptance of the person or animal right where they are is very healing in and of itself. If I can love my friend even though she still smokes, and feel calm around my grandfather even though he has cancer, and accept my nervous cat just where he is… I am holding a space of love and connection that can change everything.
That acceptance can be a stable platform that gives them the courage to step forward if they choose.
How Do You Surrogate Tap?
As we’ve said, first clear your own energy around the issues before considering surrogate tapping for the other person.
There are several ways to surrogate tap. You might try each and see which one feels best to you. For right now, let’s say we’re tapping for Bob.
(1) You can state, as you tap the side of the hand point, “I am Bob, and this tapping is for him” and then tap on yourself as if you were him. A lot of people recommend ending this kind of tapping with a reminder phrase, “I am <your name>, and I release Bob’s energy with Love and Best Wishes”, or something of that nature.
(2) You can imagine tapping on him, the way we tap on our own inner children. Imagine him there in front of you and tap on the image of him while you tap on yourself. To learn how, see our Inner Tapping Video.
(3) If the person is willing, you could sit in the same room with him and tap on yourself while he listens. (I did this with my cat, while laying my other hand on his back when he was relaxed and connected with me. I tapped on his fear of strangers and thunderstorms, and we’ve seen nice changes. He is much more relaxed.)
There are other ways to connect to the energy of the person you’re tapping for. These are some that have worked for us. Since the Universe is intelligent and loving… I think it has more to do with our intention than the particular approach we use.
Surrogate tapping is an offering which holds the intention that they take what is helpful and leave the rest. It honors personal choice. (Each of us has our own direction.) What is a perfect path for me may be a horrible mismatch for someone else.
When we offer love and acceptance, without needing to force an outcome, we tend to deepen the connection and make the love energy easier to allow.
If you notice that you NEED to make someone do something… or go in the direction YOU want them to… go back and tap on your own issues.
Why is it important to you that they do that? Would it make you feel safer or more loved? If so, why? Tap on your own issues so you can connect with love and allowing.
If you want to use surrogate tapping around specific negative life experiences others suffered through, I recommend the article on Surrogate Tapping for Trauma.
Ready to tap on your issues? Want help? Check out our Group Coaching Program where you can get support, guidance and feedback for building your own thriving life!