GLOSSARY: Acceptance and Commitment Therapy

Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT) has developed as a behavioral therapy to help people learn strategies to live life more in the present, more focused on important values and goals, and less focused on painful thoughts, feelings and experiences. ACT teaches people how to engage with and overcome painful thoughts and feelings through acceptance and mindfulness techniques, to develop self-compassion and flexibility, and to build life-enhancing patterns of behavior. ACT is not about overcoming pain or fighting emotions; it’s about embracing life and feeling everything it has to offer. It offers a way out of suffering by choosing to live a life based on what matters most. ACT has developed within a scientific tradition, and there continues to be a thriving research community that examines the basic science underlying ACT and the effectiveness of applying ACT techniques to numerous life problems such as anxiety, depression, PTSD, substance abuse, chronic pain, psychosis, eating problems, and weight management, just to name a few.

SOURCE: Association for Contextual Behavioral Science. (n.d.). ACT for the public. Retrieved from https://contextualscience.org/act_for_the_public.


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