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Acceptance & Commitment Therapy (Mindfullness)

Acceptance & Commitment Therapy (Mindfullness)

Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT) is a form of psychotherapy that uses acceptance and mindfulness strategies, together with commitment and behavior change strategies, to increase mindfulness, stay grounded in the present moment, and create psychology change. It is the belief that learning to "accept" challenges that are out of our control, will be the catalyst for change. The fundamental goal of ACT is to help individuals live a richer, more meaningful life, while effectively handling the pain and stress that life inevitably brings.

ACT revolves around six core processes including:

Cognitive Defusion: Learning methods to reduce the tendency to reify thoughts, images, emotions, and memories. This involves techniques to help individuals step back from these internal experiences and observe them without attachment or undue influence.

Acceptance: Actively embracing the moment without unnecessary defense. This is the process of making room for unpleasant feelings, sensations, and urges, instead of fighting them or feeling guilty for them.

Contact with the Present Moment: This is mindfulness practice, which emphasizes conscious presence and awareness of the here and now, engaging fully with what is happening at this moment.

The Observing Self: Developing a sense of continuity in consciousness that is unchanging and transcends the content of moment-to-moment experience. This helps individuals understand that they are not defined by their thoughts or feelings.

Values Clarification: Determining what is most important and meaningful in one's life, essentially identifying core values across various domains such as relationships, career, personal growth, health, and leisure.

Committed Action: Taking action guided by one’s values, even if it brings discomfort initially. This involves setting goals according to values and carrying out behavior changes to live in accordance with those values.

ACT has been used to treat stress, anxiety, depression, chronic pain, substance abuse and eating disorders.

Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT) equips individuals with a variety of skills that enhance psychological flexibility and foster a more fulfilling and meaningful life. These skills include the ones stated above and resiliency, interpersonal skills, and emotional regulation. The skills derived from ACT are versatile and can be applied to personal growth, relationships, work, and handling various psychological challenges. Thus making ACT a robust tool for improving overall mental health and well-being.

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