Seasoned traveller Lucy suddenly couldn't face another airliner ... until Heather tapped into her fears and calmed her nerves

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LUCY Sibbald spent six months travelling in South America and Australia with her husband Ian.

But by the time the 29-year old had returned home and after 23 flights, she was terrified at the prospect of taking to the air again.

“I used to drive Ian mad. When we were flying I kept thinking something was going to happen. I’d say I was dying,” she recalled, “And when we landed in Manchester I said I don’t want to get on another plane for a year.”

Although Lucy felt her fear wouldn’t stop her from flying, the prospect of a forthcoming trip to Geneva was filling her with dread.

To tackle the problem she decided to try Emotional Freedom Technique (EFT) and placed herself in the hands of Sheffield practitioner Heather Hull.

EFT has been developed from the ancient Chinese meridian energy system and is a form of acupuncture but without the needles.

The approach is based on the view that problems are caused when the body is unable to process some of the energy we take in. This energy comes in many forms - such as what people say to us, what we do, what we hear or what we sense.

Problems occur when our system doesn’t handle the energy so well.

A particular kind of energy - such as a look, comment or incident - comes in and it can get stuck in the body.

EFT works by clearing the blockages by literally tapping on the body’s energy meridians - or channels - whilst tuning the mind to the issue and balancing the body’s energy system.

Explained Heather: “By working on the meridians, EFT releases these disturbances from the subtle energy system and dissolves emotional stress. The technique is simple, works rapidly and effectively and anyone can use it. The process is non-invasive and pain-free.”

She said that a lot of emotional problems can build up.

“Sometimes just the amount we have to handle at any time, work, relationships, kids; it builds up in our system until we feel an emotion, maybe stress, anger, anxiety, frustration or hurt,” said Heather.

“It is often accompanied by a physical sensation, pressure or pain somewhere in the body, tightness in the abdomen, chest, shoulders and head.”

While the client is calm, the practitioner taps the meridian points, which are all over the body, to clear the energy blockages.

Before her session Lucy had to write down the fear and where she felt this fear came from. A lot was built around the anticipation of going on the flight.

They also talked in detail about being on the plane and identified all aspects of her anxieties, Heather was literally able to tap away at Lucy’s fears and was able to focus on all aspects of her concerns.

“We went back to leaving the ground and I didn’t realise until we spoke about it that it was one of the big things,” said Lucy.

She felt a lot calmer as the day of her trip arrived. She was given phrases to repeat and was told to tap her hand if she felt anxious.

On the flight to Geneva there was some turbulence.

“A woman started screaming ‘we are going to die’,” said Lucy, who was able to remain calm. “I was able to talk to Ian and I felt I was in control. I was able to think the turbulence was fine. I was fine.

“I was surprised at how well it worked for me, as I wasn’t sure it would work. Heather was really pleased for me.”

For more information contact Heather on 0114 2891342 or see

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Copyright: Kate Lahive, Sheffield Newspapers, 11th April, 2005.