Tapas Acupressure Technique (TAT)

Tapas Fleming developed the Tapas Acupressure Technique (TAT) protocols for use in anxiety disorders, phobia, trauma, allergies and problematic relationships. It is particularly useful in mass trauma, such as the September 11th scenario, for several reasons.

TAT is very simple to learn. TAT always utilizes the same 4 basic points on the head, where many acupuncture meridians merge and enter the brain. These points are:

  • The inner corners of each eye
  • Between the eyebrows (up about inch)
  • The back of the head (occiput point)
Light pressure to these points during the TAT treatment (usually applied by the client) opens up a flow of energy that allows the brain to process "stuck" information adaptively. While these points are activated, the client is taken through a series of statements, which focus the attention on the dysfunctional emotional or behavioral pattern. The energy flow created by activating these points is often equated with light. It dissipates the original trauma underlying the emotion or behavior, thereby releasing it's grip on the client.

TAT addresses previous traumas that may be connected subconsciously to the current incident.
Many immigrants and refugees have come from places where incidents similar to September 11th have occurred. Traumas have a tendency to "bundle" and build on each other. For them, this has been particularly painful because they must deal with September 11th plus all of the previous incidents of violence, destruction and loss. Whole communities are experiencing nightmares, flashbacks, depression, and constant anxiety on a higher level than the US population in general.

TAT is less language intensive than some other forms of intervention.
TAT is especially useful for populations such as immigrants with limited English and children who can't adequately express their feelings. The healing is done "behind the scenes", by focusing the individual's attention on the issue as they see. For this reason, it is only important that the person themselves be clear on the issue. The therapist need not be privy to the details.

TAT is an empowering tool that can be offered to patients / clients.
Because the acupressure points and the steps are always the same (modified only to fit the current issue) people can utilize it themselves whenever they feel stressed. This is essential in an environment such as NY in which triggers abound.

TAT does not need to be administered individually to be effective.
Because success depends on the individual focusing on their issue and following the process, it can also be taught to large groups at the same time. It has been used extensively in Mexico, Central America and South America to help victims of natural disasters. Dr. Jose Ignacio Jarero (Ed.D. Ph.D., B.C.E.T.S., B.C.E.C.R., C.T.) works with survivors of traumatic events. He is the Founder and President of the Mexican Association of Crisis Therapy. In 1998 and 1999 Dr. Jarero led teams of volunteer professionals who used TAT with large groups of children and adults after natural disasters in Mexico (floods), Nicaragua (floods and landslides), Colombia (earthquake) and Venezuela (floods and landslide). TAT was their preferred protocol because it is so easy to teach and apply. Both children and adults often began with SUDs (Subjective Units of Distress) measuring 10 and reported significant reductions after single treatments. Although they still face a long and difficult recovery process, their chances are better if the trauma was cleared relatively quickly and does not drain energy that can be focused on the future. These huge natural disasters can be equated in many ways with September 11th in New York, as large segments of the population were simultaneously effected; loosing in a moment, homes, family and livelihoods - their realities.

TAT has proven very effective with children.
It can be self administered by even children to alleviate fear and stress. It was used with great success with over 1,600 children in temporary camps set up after disasters in Mexico, Central and South America. Note: Dr. Jarero wrote, "We call TAT for children 'The Magician's Hat' and we teach it to them like part of a story. The story we teach is that they are an assistant to a magician and whenever they feel scared, they put on the magician's hat and then they feel better."

TAT is a way for Practitioners to clear stress and dissociation as they work, so that negative energy is not accumulated.
This is particularly important in cases of mass trauma in which we are more likely to become secondary trauma victims.

TAT is a loving and gentle experience, which produces deep and long lasting results.
To those who practice TAT on a regular basis, it is clear that these acupressure points open a portal to a divine healing energy. The series of 7 steps takes the client through clearing, healing and forgiveness processes, and the physical and emotional effects are often described as "lightening of a burden". Clients often report new insights, acceptance and a broadening of perspective, as the acupressure points facilitate a "re-viewing" of the issue. The phobias, anxieties, allergies, etc. that are dissipated through this process seldom return. If they do they are greatly diminished and have lost their power over the client. All in all, the speed, effectiveness and versatility of TAT make it one of the ideal tools for therapists and their clients.