I wanted to write a blog about how our politicians might use energy psychology. Take a moment and notice your reaction to that idea. As I considered this concept, my mind first ran to all sorts of satirical comedic images. I imagined Jon Stewart’s imitation of Mitch McConnell doing EFT, “Ahh I deeply ahh and completely accept myself. Ahhh yup.” Then my mind ran to other less than kind caricatures, “Okay, senator, we need to you to focus on a specific event. Let’s focus on the first time you lied to the public…”
I then began to reflect on why I get such a therapeutic kick from the Daily Show or Colbert satirizing what goes on in politics, and I realized that it had to do with my deep disappointment in the leaders who are supposed to be working to make things better and the sense of helplessness about fixing what is wrong with the political culture in the United States. At least I can enjoy Stewart making fun of them. So, it has become apparent to me that we first need to use EP on ourselves to deal with our feelings about how leaders and authority figures disappoint us or try to cheat us. What upset feelings do you have about them?
Two years ago I participated with Voice for HOPE (Healers of the Planet Earth), a group of healers and political activists banding together to transcend political partisanship and transform the policies that limit individual and social wellbeing and health. With their support, I learned about productive, transpartisan ways to engage in political dialogue and traveled to Washington, DC to talk to my congressman about improving mental healthcare policy. It was a very healing experience for me personally. Here’s a video capturing some of my thoughts just after the visit.
I know that many people start out in politics with good intentions, but they are under tremendous pressures and temptations to leave the path of integrity while in political office. I sometimes see these things as incantations and spells. How much control does the person still have over their integrity and how much control does the spell have? How might energy psychology approaches be used by our political leaders to help them stay on the path of integrity and, by extension, fulfill their deepest yearnings to be of service to the communities they represent?
Here are a few things I would suggest:
- Help the politician get a very clear image of what it would mean to be a politician who is ethical and acts with integrity no matter what.
- Create a daily routine of clearing the major psycho-energetic reversals as well as down-regulating the nervous system (think Donna Eden’s 5 minute routine).
- Teach them how to use EFT or TFT or TAT on the current events in their daily life as politicians that either a) upset them or b) tempt them to move away from integrity.
- Teach them meditation and or mindfulness skills to help them keep centered while under political pressure.
With two books out (A Mindful Nation and The Real Food Revolution), Congressman Tim Ryan stands as a wonderful example of a conscious politician making great efforts to heal American politics. It is my hope that Congressman Ryan is the start of a sub-culture within politics that explicitly values and champions approaches (such as energy psychology and mindfulness) to maintain and foster integrity and ethical service to the country and humanity.
Robert Schwarz, PsyD, DCEP
Author, Tools for Transforming Trauma
ACEP Executive Director