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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



1. Problem solving is a collaborative effort to resolve a problem.

2. Two-winner (win-win) tactics should be used.

3. Each partner should follow the "change first" principle. Each partner should be

prepared to "pay in advance" by changing their own behavior first, rather than

insisting that they will change when (after) the partner changes.

4. Problem solving should consist of two distinct, non-overlapping phases:

Problem Definition and Problem Resolution. There is no point in arguing, until

you are agreed on what you are arguing about. What in particular is the goal of

each or both, and what in particular is obstructing that goal? If you’re vague or

fuzzy, you probably will have no way of solving the unknown problem.

5. Problem definition should be BRIEF, positive, specific, and FUTURE -oriented.

6. Only one problem should be discussed. Throwing in every issue that exists

practically guarantees that none can be solved.

7. The communication skills of Listening, Validation, Feeling-Talk, Positive

Expression, and Negative Expression should be followed. The sense that one

is being listened to and taken seriously may be more important than winning.

8. Problem solving should be modest and limited in focus.

a.) One step at a time.

b.) Recognize that you won't get everything you want.

c.) The best solutions will come when both are invested in the change

process, and considering the relationship.

9. Conclusions should be detailed and repeated by each. End on a positive note,

so that both will understand that it is not a grudging end to the discussion.