Accepting The Good and the Bad

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ACT was developed in the 1980s by psychologist and university professor Steven C. Hayes. The ideas which developed into Acceptance and Commitment Therapy came from Hayes’ own experiences with panic attacks. He realized there was a need for himself, and humanity, to learn to accept life’s experiences – both good and bad.

Acceptance and Commitment Therapy is an action-oriented approach to psychotherapy, meaning that it places a focus on how to move forward from difficult times in concrete and meaningful ways. The main premise of Acceptance Commitment Therapy is that pain, distressing emotions, and hardships are inevitable parts of the human experience. Thus, it aims to help adapt to these challenges rather than potentially do more harm by trying to suppress them. This can help reduce suffering and provide a sense of empowerment. Acceptance and Commitment Therapy has been proven to be helpful for many conditions and in a range of therapeutic contexts.

Acceptance and Commitment Therapy has been used successfully to help treat veterans, and patients with anxietydepressionPTSDtraumachronic pain, and much more. At The Newly Institute, we use it in conjunction with other treatment methods to help you develop healthier coping skills and to reduce the distressing impacts of your negative experiences (source: National Library of Medicine).

Acceptance and Commitment Therapy - Developing skills

Through ACT, skills are developed to allow emotions, thoughts, and sensations to come and go on their own, creating the following benefits:

  1. Developing ways to adapt more effectively to and navigate life’s complexities, challenges, and stressors gives patients improved psychological flexibility.
  2. Learning how to detach from distressing thoughts, including the way we think about ourselves, patients experience freedom from negative thinking patterns.
  3. Accepting our natural range of emotions and becoming equipped to navigate difficult ones helps patients develop enhanced emotional resilience.
  4. Aligning our actions with our values, which can manifest in enhanced relationships, job satisfaction, and sense of self, leads to improved quality of life.
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