According to Eric Berne, the key to transactional analysis methodology is transaction. Eric Berne described transactions in his book “Games People Play”:
“The unit of social intercourse is called a transaction. If two or more people encounter each other, sooner or later one of them will speak, or give some other indication of acknowledging the presence of the other. This is called transactional stimulus. Another person will then says or do something which is in some way related to the stimulus, and that is called the transactional response”.
Transactional Analysis, commonly known as TA, is an integrative approach to the theory of psychology and psychotherapy. It is described as integrative because it has elements of psychoanalytic, humanist, and cognitive approaches. Transactional Analysis was developed by Canadian-born US psychiatrist Eric Berne during the late 1950s.
According to Berne, the key to transactional analysis is a transaction – the fundamental unit of social intercourse. With this definition, Berne defined the basic unit of analysis. At its simplest level, Transactional Analysis is the method for studying interactions between individuals. It looks at how we speak and respond to others and at the roles we play, and its goal is to improve these interactions so they become healthy and balanced.