What People Say


Catherine McAuley Centre Trauma Healing Class

What the participants said:

USA PROGRAMME, (2008 – 2010)

Open Letter to Tapas Fleming, Founder of TAT

Hello Tapas,

I was one of the veterans you helped at Ft. Benning, Ga. Not sure if Sarah (Ireland) told you, but I had another stroke, this time a massive stroke that took all my vision. Out of the 12 Neurologist, Cardiologist and other specialist at U.A.B. hospital in Birmingham, Alabama, all said I would never regain any vision at all. Well if you remember me, I a “little” hard headed. I told them they were all wrong.

I started using your techniques again and I’m sure I don’t have to tell you, but I now have 20/20 vision in the front of my left eye. I still have no vision in left or peripheral in the left. I am still considered legally blind because of the right eye and peripheral, but still it came back directly in front of me. I explain it as if I am looking through a straw. All of these “specialist” are confused about my vision returning. I have passed on your website address to them. Hopefully they will contact you and learn T.A.T. I was already a believer because of it helping me with P.T.S.D., but even more so now that I am sure it was and is the reason I have vision returning.

I wanted to thank you again for helping us in Ga. and for creating T.A.T. It has helped me again. I also use it to control the anxiety I was experiencing from the stroke and total blindness I had for 12 days. I had heart surgery last week to plug two holes in my heart. They were called a “P.F.O. and a “A.S.D.”( your doctor friend can tell you more about them. I now have a 25mm nickel/titianium plug covering the two holes. These holes were what was allowing the clots to bypass my lungs and go directly to my brain and causing the strokes. I have been using T.A.T. since Ft. Benning, and it has kept me off a lot of the medication the doctors have recommended to help with stress and blood pressure. They even said that during surgery, they have never seen someone so calm. (I was awake during it) I totally attribute that to doing T.A.T. while in the prep room and thinking pleasant thoughts during the procedure. Thank you again Tapas, I owe you, Sarah and Harold everything.

Brian Davis, Rtd: Staff Sergeant Special Forces.

August 18, 2008

To Whom It May Concern,

During the period from Sunday, August 3, 2008, through Thursday, August 14, 2008, I attended and participated in daily TAT session from approximately 6pm – 9pm ten of these days. I am 65 years in age, and a retired 31 year veteran of the U.S. Army, having spent a major portion of my career in Infantry, Airborne, and Special Forces assignments. I spent two years in combat in South Vietnam, from December 1966 – December 1967, and again from early June 1969 – end of May 1970, serving in Special Forces. We were a special operations unit that conducted long range reconnaissance missions deep behind enemy lines. Our mission was to collect information/intelligence about the enemy and his intentions, to harass the enemy, to capture prisoners, and to take some fight to their rear areas with the clear understanding that we might never return. Each mission could be our last, it was my objective not to lose a soldier regardless of what it took.

When I began this TAT work session I knew I still harbored sights, images, sounds, feelings, and emotions from my two years in combat in Vietnam. I have always, since returning from combat, had some difficulties communicating with my wife, and with developing close friendships. My senses have been super sensitive, I have been a light sleeper, and am always assessing my surroundings, as if I face an immediate security threat.

During the initial session I took the images that I encountered in mid-1967, during a difficult body recovery mission, where the body had been badly mutilated. I have always had periodic images of this scene and always felt like there should have been something that I could have done to prevent this from happening, even though I know I could not have actually influenced the outcome. Following the session I am able recall the situation in greater detail but without all of the tightness and emotions filling my body.

During the second session I took a heavy combat situation that occurred in the A Shau Valley, I fell into a punji trap and getting wounded in the neck. I had to be medically evacuated by helicopter, and always felt like I let my unit down. To me it was a form of harboring some level of guilt. At the end of this session I no longer felt the sense of guilt that I had carried.

During the next three sessions I thought of three other vivid situations while engaged in combat. These caused a heightened sense of inner turmoil whenever I was reminded of them. Thorough the workshop session both of these were diminished to the point where I no longer thought of them. I can recall details in clearer images but without any of the past normal emotions of withdrawing within myself.

During the sixth session, because a year of combat has so many images, sights, sounds, smells, and other emotions that can be triggered, I focused on the entire year, everything that led up to the year, and everything that I encountered when the year was completed, and this included a return to no fanfare, and actual feelings of disgust. Over the next weekend I found that everything about that first year was calmed, and while I could trace the entire year in my mind, it is more like reading a book than and anything else and no sense of reliving any portion of that time in combat.

When the sessions resumed the following Monday, August 11, I thought of my entire second year in combat. In this session I took my entire second year in combat, and everything that led up to the situation and everything encountered when I returned back to the United States. This was very important to me since some of the images and experiences of the first year seemed to cross over into the second year. I can now recall all of this without the emotions that I have harbored inside over the years.

During the next session I took on a larger personal challenge, and I considered my entire military experience. This included anything from the two years of combat, time in Grenada, time in Honduras, and time doing all sorts of other high-risk training and assignments. This complimented what I had done before and put my entire stretch of military service behind me. This included training deaths, training casualties, perceptions of failed efforts, incomplete actions, and other lingering doubts about the success or failure of an entire career.

During the ninth session I started with my divorce that is nearly over, and all of the anguish that I have been carrying. The feelings of failure associated with ending a long marriage, even though it had to end. During this process, my body brought up from deep inside feelings that I can’t describe but I would attribute to base instinct survival feelings left over from my military service and time in combat. It was like they wanted to be free. Following the session I could not describe the different level of feelings but I feel like a huge weight has been lifted and I have been given a fresh start. My only regret is that I was not able to go through this many years ago, as it has given me a fresh look at life and one that I have not had since 1966 when I was preparing to go to war in Vietnam and all of the years since.

During the final session I put my fear of making close friends out there as well as all of those elements within my which have been causing stress. I have been under a Doctor’s care for growing high blood pressure, and was supposed to begin a regimen of medium strength blood pressure medicine. Last week I had a Doctors follow up appointment and what I can say is my blood pressure is almost back to normal, and at the low range of normal, and my doctor asked how the medication was making me feel for me to achieve such a return to the healthy normal level recorded. I explained that I had been going through a trauma healing process and a stress reduction process, and that is the only way I can explain my blood pressure measurement.

It is my intent to go through this TAT process at least once a week for the rest of my life.

Mayo Addison “Biff” Hadden III
Colonel (Retired) Special Forces

Pakistan Testimonials

Thank you very much for all your support and sharing of Knowledge with the Pakistani and Afghan refugee communities.
It was one of the best training that we received during our professional life.
Each individual gets benefits from it, and I hope that the knowledge will disseminate further with all stakeholders, earthquake affectees, and afghan refugees.
As I told you on the phone three main daily newspapers give coverage to your training and work here.
I do hope that our partnership will continue in the future.

Ali Gohar,
Just Peace International,

“I liked the idea. In today`s world all human beings need love, support and care. This kind of training is not only helpful in supporting an individual but can be very effective in bridging the gulf created on the basis of region, religion and race among human beings”.
– Dr Rakhshinda Perveen, Executive Vice President, Sachet

“If this was in all our schools, we wouldn’t have the trouble we are having with our children now.”
– Dr Khan, Balakot Earthquake Affectees Rehabilitation Association

Case Studies

Project: Pakistan / Kashmir (2006)

The Pakistan earthquake occurred on October 8th 2005. Unofficial estimates say that 200,000 people died. The final number will never be known as the mountains swallowed up whole communities and their bodies will never be recovered.

We were asked by our Pakistani friends to help by training people in Pakistan in how to release the psychological effects of the trauma and the fundamentals of energy psychology techniques for working with trauma and stress.

During the two weeks of our visit, we worked in Balakot, Muzaffarabad, Peshawar and Islamabad. In that time we trained 160 Doctors, Nurses, Paramedics, Psychologists, Psychiatrists, Counsellors, Community Development workers and Teachers how to use Energy Psychology techniques Emotional Freedom Technique (EFT) and Tapas Acupressure Technique (TAT) for themselves and their communities and families. They were all dealing with survivors, trauma and illness, as well as their own compassion fatigue.

We visited some of the temporary schools in Balakot and up in the mountains. Here we had a chance to work with the children. We showed 350 school-children how to get rid of their fear of the earthquake by demonstrating the techniques using drawings and with the help of their teacher’s translation. We got all of the children following along as we explained and made it into a game for them They loved learning one technique called EFT, (Emotional Freedom Technique) where they tapped on acupuncture points on the hands face and upper body while thinking about their fears.. When we finished with one group of about 200 we asked them to put their hands up if they felt better when they thought about the earthquake. Every hand shot into the air! So, when we asked them how they felt the replies we got were “relaxed, happy, better”. We later passed a group of boys who were sitting on the side of the mountain using EFT. It was wonderful to see them smiling and laughing as they waved to us.

Dr Khan from the Balakot Earthquake Affectees Rehabilitation Association said at the end of the training “If this was in all our schools we wouldn’t have the trouble we are having with our children now.”


Project Title: PAKISTAN – Commissionerate for Afghan Refugees and Earthquake Survivors
Sponsor(s): Just Peace International
Location(s): Peshawar
Dates: 30 May 2006 – 31 May 2006

Purpose & Identified Need(s):

To identify the needs of the staff and educate them on the symptoms of stress, burn out, and underlying trauma and how that affects the individual, and to teach them processes to alleviate these symptoms.

To run a train the trainers programme for the staff of the Commissionerate.

The staff comprised of social workers, counsellors and psychologists who were working with earthquake survivors and Afghan refugees in the camps. Some of the staff were working out in remote areas and had travelled more than 6 hours to attend.

The number of staff that attended the training was 25. They had no previous training in the effects of trauma.

Activities and Interventions:

Day 1. Taught attendees the new understanding of the energy field and how trauma is stored in our body, mind and energy field. Applied Muscle testing to demonstrate how thoughts and memories affect our energy levels. Taught about the effects of trauma and the brains response to danger, the flight fight freeze response, and how we can get stuck in this moment in time which triggers flashbacks, nightmares and panic attacks. Taught energy psychology processes, Emotional Freedom Technique, Finger Holds and breathing techniques, to change the body and brain’s response to release past memories and to use on a daily basis to deal with stress.

Day 2. Taught Tapas Acupressure Technique for self care and to use within their communities.


The attendees reported 100% reduction in their stress levels. The commissioner general gave up smoking overnight.


“Thank you very much for all your support and sharing of knowledge with the Pakistani and Afghan refugee communities. It was one of the best trainings that we received during our professional life. Each individual gets benefits from it, and I hope that the knowledge will disseminate further with all stakeholders, earthquake affectees, and Afghan refugees.”
– Ali Gohar, Just Peace International


Project Title: PAKISTAN – Balakot
Sponsor(s): Just Peace International
Location(s): Balakot
Dates: 31 May – 2 June 2006

Purpose & Identified Need(s):

Balakot was at the epicentre of the earthquake and was completely devastated.

To work with individuals affected by symptoms of trauma resulting from the earthquake and local doctors, teachers, counsellors and psychologists working in the area, also affected.

To teach local children in the tented school provided by the army how to use simple techniques to help them with their bad memories and nightmares. Staff were present and delighted with the outcome.

Activities and Interventions:

Educated on trauma and how it affects both the body and mind. The latest understandings on how we can alleviate those symptoms using energy psychology processes.

Taught how to use Energy psychology processes including Emotional Freedom Technique, Finger holds, Butterfly Hug and Tapas Acupressure Technique.


Dr Khan from the Balakot Earthquake Affectees Rehabilitation Association said at the end of the training “If this was in all our schools we wouldn’t have the trouble we are having with our children now”


All attendees reported a significant drop in their symptoms and a feeling of both hope and peace returning. The teachers and psychologists told us they would be using what they had learnt with their communities.

Abbas Institute and HDF

Project Title: PAKISTAN – Abbas Institute and Human Development Foundation (HDF)
Sponsor(s): Just Peace International and Afshan Amir
Location(s): Muzzafarabad, and Bugna, Kashmir
Dates: 4 – 7 June 2006

Purpose & Identified Need(s):

A need had been identified that staff and children were experiencing trauma and anxiety resulting from their losses at the time of the earthquake, which was not being addressed.

To teach trauma interventions to medical staff at Abass Institute, and the Field Hospital in Bugna, and how to recognise the signs of burn out and compassion fatigue, and processes to alleviate it.

Teach children in the boys and girls schools how to release the fear and anxiety experienced as a result of the earthquake.

Activities and Interventions:

One day training in Abbas Institute for Doctors and nurses on trauma and interventions to alleviate the trauma and stress resulting from it.

Two days spent at the field hospital in Bugna, high up and remote in the Kashmir mountains, with the Human Development Foundation.

The HDF took us to the boys and girls schools in Bugna. The schools had been badly affected by the earthquake and the boys were having lessons out of doors or in small tents, the girls were in tents with one small building safe enough to use.

We spent a morning with approximately 150 boys aged between 5-17, and an afternoon with approx 100 girls aged between 10-17 and their teachers.


We had feedback from one of the medical staff from the field hospital that he had used the Emotional Freedom Technique with a person suffering from PTSD in an outlying region, and had significantly and successfully reduced their symptoms.

The teachers from both schools were delighted at the signs and feedback from their pupils that their anxiety and fear had diminished and in some cases gone.

When we finished with one group of about 200 we asked them to put their hands up if they felt better when they thought about the earthquake. Every hand shot into the air! So, when we asked them how they felt the replies we got were “relaxed, happy, better”. We later passed a group of boys who were sitting on the side of the mountain using EFT. It was wonderful to see them smiling and laughing as they waved to us.

In Abbas Institute:

The Head Psychiatrist at the Abbas Institute is Dr Rashid. When I was ushered into his room he was treating a woman who had lost her children and hadn’t slept for the past 7 months. She was banging her head on his desk in pain. I offered to work with her and he agreed. After 20 minutes she had relaxed considerably, and had stopped banging her head. When he asked her how she felt, she said she felt lighter. The psychiatrist told her to use the technique I had shown her, TAT (Tapas Acupressure Technique) which involves holding acupressure points, every day. Dr Rashid came to our training the following day.


Project Title: PAKISTAN – Sahil
Sponsor(s): Sahil (NGO)
Location(s): Islamabad
Dates: June 8th 2006

Purpose & Identified Need(s):

To teach Sahil’s psychologists and social workers energy psychology techniques.

Sahil is an NGO that works against child sexual abuse and exploitation and with women’s rights issues. The staff wished to learn new ways to help their clients deal with trauma and stress and to also help them overcome their own compassion fatigue.

Seventeen members of Sahil’s staff attended.

Activities and Interventions:

One day workshop teaching energy psychology techniques including Emotional Freedom Technique (EFT) and Tapas Acupressure Technique (TAT). Teach how trauma affects us, how we respond to it and how we store it in our mind and body.


We were asked if we could return and run a certified training for the staff because of the value they experienced in the workshop.

All attendees reported a reduction in their anxiety and stress and the feedback was that they felt at peace and lighter.


Project Title: PAKISTAN Sachet
Sponsor(s): Sachet (NGO)
Location(s): Islamabad & Muzzafarabad
Dates: 3 June & 6 June 2006

Purpose & Identified Need(s):

To teach energy psychology techniques to Sachet’s staff consisting of Doctors, psychologists and community workers, numbering 26 in all.

Sachet promotes human development and is “society for the advancement of community, health, education and training”.

To help promote wellness for the staff by reducing their own stress and compassion fatigue.

Activities and Interventions:

Two half-day workshops teaching the fundamentals of energy psychology and energy techniques for working with trauma and stress.


The staff fully engaged with the techniques and found them to be extremely beneficial.


“I liked the idea. In today`s world all human beings need love, support and care. This kind of training is not only helpful in supporting an individual but can be very effective in bridging the gulf created on the basis of region, religion and race among human beings.”
-Dr Rakhshinda Perveen, Executive Vice President

Handikos, Kosovo (2012)

Client(s): HANDIKOS (Kosovo)
Sponsor: Action for the Development and Empowerment of Communities (ADEC)
Location: Handikos Centre, Malisheva, Kosovo
Date(s): 29 February – 1st March, 2012

1. Context:

Following discussions with Charley Swords (ADEC), SB was invited by ADEC to provide practical tools to aid individuals experiencing stress and trauma in post-conflict Kosovo, by teaching them how to reduce and eliminate their symptoms.

2. Target Group:

The target group comprised 25 women from Kosovo, ranging in age from late teens to mid 50’s, including 20 with special needs and disabilities, which included mild learning disabilities, sight impairment, clinical blindness, MS and amputations. All had experienced the trauma of war.

3. Pre-Assessment:

Each of the attendees was asked to complete a Becks Anxiety Inventory at the commencement of the group workshop. Twenty forms were completed.

4. Methodology / Approach Taken:

The format of the event was a 2-day group workshop held within a private, secure, informal setting in Handikos Centre. The group was facilitated by SB with the assistance of Florentina Dushi who acted as translator and supported individuals within the group alongside SB.

Agenda: Day 1: (10:00 – 15:00)

Agenda: Day 2: (10:00 – 15:00)

5. Post-Assessment:

At the end of the workshop the participants were invited to complete a second Beck’s Anxiety Inventory, to assess changes in symptoms. Twelve (12) forms were completed of which nine (9 ) were of acceptable standard to be used for statistical purposes . This equates to a 45% response from the original group.

6. Outcomes:

Analysis of the pre- and post-assessment Beck Anxiety Inventory forms indicated a 65% reduction in overall symptoms and sense of well-being amongst the respondents.

Qualitative feedback provided by the women indicated that they felt more relaxed, war memories seemed more distant.and had reduced in emotional intensity, and they had feelings of increased confidence to deal with their own personal life issues. Additionally, the participants indicated that they had passed the techniques on to their own family members, who they advised had also benefited from the techniques.

At the end of the workshop, the women showed a higher degree of engagement and said that they felt uplifted and incredibly grateful for the opportunity to learn these techniques, and expressed a wish for a follow-up workshop.

Personal Video Testimonials were provided by a number of the participants.

7. Post Event Follow-Up:

The centre manager, stated on camera that it had been a very successful 2-day programme, that the participants were very happy. The training had been more helpful because the participants had been taught techniques/tools that were practical and usable. She stated that she regretted not having attended herself, and hoped that she could attend a follow-up workshop.

UK Veterans (2012)

Sponsor(s): Sarah Bird
Location(s): National Memorial Arboretum, Staffordshire, UK
Dates: 20 – 22 April 2012

Purpose & Identified Need(s):

To work with a group consisting of veterans, spouses, and widows who are experiencing the after effects of combat trauma and grief, some of group have been diagnosed with PTSD.

Activities and Interventions:

Tapas Acupressure Technique, energy tapping and breathing processes were taught to help ease the symptoms.


The chart below shows the reduction of symptoms recorded using PCLM & PCLC assessment.


A second seminar took place in May 2012 to follow up and address any needs arising from this seminar.


Pakistan Testimonials

Kosovo Testimonials

Staff Sergeant Brian Davis, Part I

Staff Sergeant Brian Davis, Part II

Noel, Armed Forces Veteran