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                    Acacia Counseling
           Gene Douglas, M.Ed. LPC LMFT


To treat a problem using TAT, follow these instructions:
1.) Rate the strength of your feeling you are experiencing right now, on a scale of 1-10, when you think of the problem.
That number is the SUD (Subjective Units of Discomfort.)
2.) Put your thumb against the inside corner of one eye. Place the ring finger against the inside corner of the other eye.
3.) Place the middle two fingers against your forehead, about a quarter inch above a line between the eyebrows so the
two fingers are lined up with the upper part of the eyebrow.
4.) Cup the other hand, and place it behind your head, with the thumb against your neck, right where it meets the base of the skull.
The little finger will be pressed against your head where it rests. Don't lay your hand flat against your head.
5.) Close your eyes and think of the feeling or event or person that bothers you. Continue for one minute, or until you feel a "shift"
in your body before that. This may be a reflexive sigh.
6.) Keep your pose, and repeat a statement reminding you of the problem in your mind. It may be a person's name,
a phrase about what happened, or the name of the feeling. Continue repeating for one minute, or until you feel a shift.
7.) Keep the pose, and repeat in your mind a statement which is opposite of the problem -- even if you don't believe it.
This might be "I will feel comfortable when I do that," or "I will feel calm and relaxed," whatever is opposite to what has been the case.
Continue repeating for one minute, or until a shift occurs.
8.) Keep the pose, and concentrate your attention on the part of your body where you feel your feelings. That will be different for different people.
Continue for one minute, or until a shift occurs.
9.) Rate your SUD again.

TAT Links:
Learning and Using TAT
How To Do TAT

Recommended Reading

Are you an alcoholic?

See how you would answer these questions...

1. Do you feel you are a normal drinker? (No: 2 points)

2. Have you ever awakened in the morning after drinking the night before and found that you could not remember a part of the evening? (Yes: 2 points)

3. Does your spouse (or parents) ever complain about your drinking? (Yes: 2 points)

4. Can you stop drinking without a struggle after one or two drinks? (No: 7 points)

5. Do you ever feel bad about your drinking? (Yes: 1 point)

6. Do you ever try to limit your drinking to certain times of the day or to certain places, in order to control your intake? (Yes: 2 points)

7. Have you ever attended a meeting of AA? (Yes: 1 point)

8. Have you ever been told you have liver trouble? (Yes: 1 point)

9. Has your spouse or other family ever gone to anyone for help about your drinking? (Yes: 2 points)

10. Have you ever lost friends (girlfriends or boyfriends) because of your drinking? (Yes: 2 points)

11. Have you ever gotten into trouble at work because of your drinking?   (Yes: 2 points)

12. Have you ever neglected your obligations, your family, or work, for two or more days in a row, because of your drinking? (Yes: 3 points)

13. Do you ever drink before noon? (Yes: 1 point)

14. Have you ever had delerium tremens (DT's), severe shaking, heard voices or seen things that weren't there after heavy drinking? (Yes: 7 points)

15. Have you ever gone to anyone for help about your drinking? (Yes: 4 points)

16. Have you ever been in a hospital because of your drinking? (Yes: 4 points)

17. Have you ever been a patient in a psychiatric hospital, or on a psychiatric ward of a general hospital, where drinking was part of the problem? (Yes: 2 points)

18. Have you ever been seen at a psychiatric or mental health clinic, or gone to a doctor, social worker, or clergyman for help with an emotional problem in which drinking was part of the problem? (Yes: 2 points)

19. Have you ever been arrested, even for a few hours, because of drunk behavior? (Yes: 2 points)

20. Have you ever been arrested for drunk driving, or driving after drinking? (Yes: 2 points)

21.  Have you ever lied about your drinking? (1 point)

(`Make a decent living?  Handle your responsibilities OK? Could you be a "Functional Alcoholic?"  See the link below.)

5 points: possibly alcoholic 

6 points: probably alcoholic 

7 points: alcoholic

If you scored within this range, you should seek help. Alcoholics Anonymous should be listed in your local telephone book (phone most likely to be answered around noon or 6:00 pm.) Many 

treatment centers are free of charge. Call your county mental health agency for more information. 

Look in the yellow pages of your telephone directory under "alcohol" and "drug" for treatment centers near you.

Are you a "functional" alcoholic?  Click below:

New York Post -- Answer yes, & you may be an alcoholic (click below.)

Basic Elements for Recovery

  • Break through denial and minimization.

  • Understand the nature of the illness

  • Surrender to the process of recovery.

  • Limit damage to self and others.

  • Establish abstinence from harmful behaviors.

  • Take care of physical and bodily needs.

  • Participate in a culture of support for recovery.