Thought Field Therapy

 Callahan Techniques Ltd., define TFT as “a treatment for psychological disturbances which provides a code, that when applied to a psychological problem to which the individual is attuned, will eliminate perturbations in the thought field, the fundamental cause of all negative emotions”.

What the hell does that all mean???

Well basically TFT is a tapping technique, where you tap on various parts of the body whilst thinking about a specific issue, the theory is that your thoughts are linked to your bodies energy system and so by tapping certain energy meridian points on the body in the sequence diagnosed by the therapist, the perturbations or in layman’s terms errors, in the way a thought is stored in the brain are corrected.

Mumbo jumbo? Well the explanation might or might not be true, but the result is remarkable!

Honestly, it really does work. Problem is that whilst it’s awesome at getting rid of simple phobias in double quick time, as far as anxiety and panic attack symptoms are concerned, the therapist has a lot of work to do. 30 hours plus of therapy to make an impact is common!

The story goes that the method’s founder Dr. Callahan had a large clinic in LA, so you can imagine the clients he must have had (and the money he must have been making) but was really frustrated that even though he was using all of the up to date methods (CBT etc.) he believed that he was only convincing his clients that they could put up with more than they thought they could, rather than actually curing them (sounds familiar).

One of the areas he was interested in was applied kinesiology and in particular muscle testing which showed that there was a link between the mind and the body.

At the time Dr Callahan was working with a patient named Mary who had a severe fear of water, Mary’s fear was so intense, that she couldn’t go out in the rain, or even look at the Sea! Dr. Callahan had tried everything he could think of to remove Mary’s fear, but in over a year of therapy, he had only ever managed to coax her to approach the swimming pool at his home, very slowly and then with a huge amount of pent up anxiety.

One day Dr Callahan asked Mary, where she felt her fear of water, to which she replied, “my stomach,” Having studied applied kinesiology and the concept of energy meridians, Dr Callahan knew that the energy meridian associated with the stomach terminated under the eye, so he asked Mary to tap under her eye.

According to the story, as Mary tapped, her lifelong and previously unresponsive severe phobia of water completely disappeared! Next Dr. Callahan attempted to replicate this with a number of his other clients, but it didn’t work with anyone else. Even so, Dr Callahan realised he was onto something and not giving up, his subsequent research led him to discover TFT.

Our View - Good and Not so Good


Certainly works

A good therapist can uncover the causes of panic attack symptoms and treat them rather than treating the panic attack symptoms themselves.

Improvement is felt relatively quickly

NHS Trust Association, approved complementary medicine therapy

TFT either works or does nothing, there are no reported side effects

Not so Good

Whilst the NHS recognise TFT and can refer you via their directory, all sessions are private and cost quite a bit

Not all TFT therapists are trained highly enough to deal with panic attack symptoms - You need to find a TFTdx practitioner, this is the diagnostic level and these therapists can diagnose the correct sequence. Less well trained therapists are TFTalg or algorithm trained and can be viewed as 'first aiders' they know the basics. For anxiety and panic disorder you need someone who is better trained. The other thing here is to make sure that they are callahan techniques trained and carry full insurance for TFT, that way you avoid the cowboys.

TFT claims a massive success rate, but even TFT doesn't work for everyone. Practitioners say that people affected by food or airborn toxins struggle with TFT.

Not a quick fix, TFT for anxiety, panic and agoraphobia is a lot of work and so works out costly.

Useful TFT links

British Thought Field Therapy Association - includes a directory of UK practitioners (you can search by keyword - agoraphobia, Panic Attack etc. to find specialists - remember to look for TFTdx) -

Dr Roger Callahan -

Association for Thought Field Therapy -
includes a worldwide directory of practitioners (you can search by country/region to find specialists - remember to look for TFTdx) -

Further information on TFT

Further reading

Tapping the Healer Within
by Roger Callahan

A self-help book explaining how TFT works

See also ‘About Us’, ‘Terms & Conditions’ and ‘Privacy Policy

All content is © copyright 2010