Acceptance and Commitment Therapy
Acceptance and commitment therapy (ACT) is another hybrid form of cognitive-behavioral therapy and is quite similar to dialectical behavior therapy. Both types of therapies aim to teach clients about mindfulness and Eastern meditative practices. According to acceptance and commitment therapy, during times of distress we often become “fused” with our thoughts and feelings. As a result we elevate their importance and start to believe we are our thoughts and feelings.
ACT focuses on mindfulness to improve a person’s psychological flexibility so he or she can better engage in positive behavior during difficult thoughts or emotions. Acceptance and commitment can help reduce dysfunctional thoughts, feelings and behaviors and decrease psychological distress by using “psychological intervention.”
The objective of ACT is not elimination of difficult feelings, but is to be present with what life brings us and to “move toward valued behavior”. ACT therapy invites people to open up to unpleasant feelings and to learn to not overreact to them while not avoiding situations where they are invoked.
Traditional CBT encourages people to change their thoughts and feelings. In contrast, ACT encourages people to simply notice and accept their thoughts and feelings for what they are, which are merely thoughts and feelings of no particular importance other than the importance we assign them. Eventually people discover their core values and commit to a course of action based on those values. ACT is an evidence-based treatment for addictions as well as several other disorders.
At A New Start, Inc., our dedicated team of therapists utilize a range of therapies for each patient based on their individual needs. Our team of therapists offer specialized therapies which can be combined for effective treatment using co-therapy methods. To learn more about A New Start, Inc., and our intensive outpatient program for treatment of drug and alcohol addiction, please contact us today at 1.844.TALK.ANS.