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Thought Field Therapy

Thought Field Therapy
Thought Field Therapy

In This Article
History How does it work?
A typical appointment Timings/ Cost/ Sessions
Is it right for you?
Thought Field Therapy, also known as TFT, was first used in 1980 by American psychologist Roger Callahan. Callahan had previously studied and developed Rational Emotional Behavioural Therapy, a precursor to Cognitive Behaviour Therapy (CBT).

A graduate of the University of Michigan, Callahan states that he discovered TFT by accident while treating a patient with a fear of water. Having studied the body's meridian channels (through which energy travels around the body), Callahan instructed his patient to repeatedly tap with her finger just under the eye. The eye has a direct meridian channel to the stomach and Callahan discovered that any nausea the patient was feeling when near water stopped. She was also able to splash water on her face and overcame her fear completely.

Callahan continued to develop Thought Field Therapy from his work on CBT and a number of different therapies including Psychotherapy, Kinesiology and Traditional Chinese Medicine. Callahan's main inspirations for Thought Field Therapy are Acupuncture and the Chinese philosophies about life force (or chi) and energy channels (known as 'meridians').

Ancient Chinese philosophy states that balance in the body, known as Yin and Yang, is regulated by life energy or qi (chi) that flows through meridians under the skin. TFT proposes that 'thought fields' within these channels can be affected by external trauma or predisposed negative thoughts and beliefs. These block the thought field causing 'perturbations' and result in psychological disorders and phobias.

Thought Field Therapy aims to overcome these perturbations by tapping the body's meridians in a specific sequence. The patient is asked to think about their problem or phobia which then triggers the negative thought field. The TFT tapping technique is then used on precise meridian points around the body specific to the individual's problem.

As the patient taps, the thought field is taken over, or deactivated, and therefore unable to deliver its information to the brain. The patient effectively reverses their negative thoughts or emotions and overcomes their disorder.

Be prepared - It is advisable to choose a Thought Field Therapy practitioner who is a member of, or is accredited by, an association or professional body. This ensures your TFT session is carried out in a suitable environment and by someone who has received formal training and ongoing development. Members are also bound to a code of ethics and practice. The main Thought Field Therapy organisations are listed at the foot of this article.

On finding a TFT practitioner, ask about their expertise and testimonials from previous clients. Before your appointment, think about what you hope to achieve with Thought Field Therapy and make a list of the problems you hope to overcome.

What to expect - Thought Field Therapy will usually take place in a quiet and relaxed environment. There are no drugs, needles or invasive methods involved. It is completely pain-free. Sometimes it is recommended that your session take place somewhere that is the cause of your phobia (e.g. a lift, swimming pool) but this will be discussed beforehand.

Thought Field Therapy is unlike conventional psychotherapies that may discuss problems for hours however the TFT practitioner will begin with a consultation about your particular issue so as to recommend a specific course of treatment.

The session will begin by the TFT practitioner asking you to clearly think about, and hold the thought, that is causing you a problem. As you do so, you will use tapping sequences on specific meridian points around your face, hands and upper body. This activates the thought field and negative emotion, or perturbation, associated with your problem and then takes it over. As the perturbation is deactivated, the distress diminishes and while you can remember the problem, there is no longer a negative emotion attached to it. The effect is often felt within minutes.

Your Thought Field Therapy session will end with the practitioner discussing the experience with you and then instructing you on methods you can use at home should your problem re-occur. If further sessions are recommended, they will advise you about follow-up appointments.

The first session with a Thought Field Therapy practitioner may take longer than usual as they gather information and an understanding of your problem and explain the process involved with TFT. Expect this appointment to last around 90 minutes. A follow-up session can be anywhere up to an hour long but some practitioners offer intensive sessions that last much longer. Thought Field Therapy costs vary but as a guide expect to pay £40 - £80 for a session depending on your location and practitioner's overheads. It is advisable to check these costs before making an appointment.

A single session of Thought Field Therapy may be all that is required to overcome your problem but expect to attend an average of three sessions with your TFT practitioner. Some people have disorders that are more complex and require further sessions but this will be discussed during your treatment.

Thought Field Therapy is a safe and non-invasive therapy for psychological problems with proven results and a high success rate. Children in particular have found TFT beneficial due its simplicity over more conventional treatments that can make them anxious or nervous.

Consult with your GP and TFT practitioner about any problems or concerns you have as they are trained to recognise what can and cannot be treated with the therapy.

This therapy or modality may help with:

Abuse Addiction Agoraphobia
Amnesia Anger Management Anxiety
Bereavement Bipolar Disorder Bullying
Childhood Abuse Depression Drug addiction
Eating Disorders Erectile Dysfunction Excessive Sweating
Habitual Behaviour Hyperhidrosis Hysteria
Insomnia Obesity OCD
Panic Attacks Performance anxiety Phobias
Relationship Problems Couples Sexual Addiction Sexual Dysfunction
Smoking Addiction Stress

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About Therapist Qualifications

British Thought Field Therapy Association (BTFTA) British Thought Field Therapy Association (BTFTA) More Info


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