Acceptance-commitment therapy (ACT) gives you the tools you need to change behaviors and actions that aren’t helpful. Serving the Washington, DC, metropolitan area in Bowie, Maryland, the licensed mental health care providers of The Modalities Group can integrate ACT into your care plan to help you process unwanted emotions and respond to hardships in your life. Call the mental health center today or schedule an appointment online to learn more.
ACT is a form of psychotherapy (talk therapy) that takes an action-centric approach to mental health care. It is a branch of psychotherapy’s most common technique, cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT).
While CBT focuses on identifying and changing unhelpful thoughts and behaviors, ACT encourages individuals to accept feelings that are traditionally perceived as “negative” and move forward anyways.
The goal of ACT is to change the way you respond to negativity and stress. Rather than denying these emotions, ACT asks you to embrace them as normal, expected reactions.
During ACT, you work with a therapist to discuss problematic relationships, recurrent conflicts, traumatic events, and other challenges in your life. After these initial discussions, you and your therapist work together to help you accept the emotions you feel around these problems.
Then, you can decide whether behavioral modifications may help change how you respond to these situations. Over time, ACT encourages you to stop repeating negative self-talk, unhelpful thoughts, and behaviors that don’t solve your problem. The team at The Modalities Group strives to improve your confidence and self-assurance when navigating the challenges in your life.
Acceptance encourages you not to avoid unwanted thoughts or feelings but instead fully embrace them.
Rather than trying to change the way you feel, cognitive defusion aims to alter your reaction to unwanted emotions and diminish your attachment to them. For example, instead of framing emotions as “I’m worthless,” cognitive defusion encourages you to think, “I’m telling myself I feel worthless.”
Being present inspires you to be in tune with what is happening right now rather than your preconceived judgments of what might happen. This process forces you to think less about the future to relieve anxiety, tension, guilt, shame, and other unhelpful emotions.
Self as context is a process that reframes the way to think and behave to focus on “I” statements instead of “You.” It forces you to stay aware of your thoughts and emotions rather than projecting what others might think of you.
In ACT, values help give meaning to your actions, activities, and accomplishments. They give you a direction to make healthy choices for yourself.
Committed action is similar to traditional psychotherapy. In ACT, committed action refers to behavioral changes you make to ensure your actions remain in line with your values.
Call The Modalities Group today or schedule an appointment online to learn more about acceptance commitment therapy.