ACT in Action: 6-Video Series
ACT brings together the best of many worlds: it integrates mindfulness into a coherent system of therapy (long before mindfulness was all the rage), and at the same time extensive research on ACT with a variety of populations has helped it to achieved the status of an evidence-based approach, recognized as such by the American Psychological Association and the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) of the U.S. Government.
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In this Series...
-- Russ Harris, MD author of The Happiness Trap & ACT Made Simple
"Counselors, psychologists and social workers attend professional development activities for a variety of reasons, some of which include learning something new, learning more about something they already know, and becoming reinvigorated by their work. Unfortunately, it can be difficult to find professional development activities that meet even one of these goals. ACT in Action is a 6-Video series that meets all three goals and more. The didactic portion of the series is clear and informative, and the counseling demonstrations bring it all to life. After watching just one video, I was able to immediately incorporate ACT strategies, conceptualizations, and analogies into my work with clients. With tight budgets leaving little money for conferences and travel, the series offers quality in-house training for all staff, not just “the lucky one” who attended the conference."
-- Jennifer M. Whitney, PhD, Associate Director, The Counseling Center, University of North Carolina at Greensboro
As Russ Harris writes, "Acceptance and Commitment Therapy, known as 'ACT' (pronounced as the word 'act') is a mindfulness-based behavioral therapy that challenges the ground rules of most Western psychology. It utilizes an eclectic mix of metaphor, paradox, and mindfulness skills, along with a wide range of experiential exercises and values-guided behavioral interventions. ACT has proven effective with a diverse range of clinical conditions: depression, OCD, workplace stress, chronic pain, the stress of terminal cancer, anxiety, PTSD, anorexia, heroin abuse, marijuana abuse, and even schizophrenia."
Hayes is indeed an impressive character: on top of an extremely successful career as a behavioral researcher, he co-developed ACT with Kelly Wilson and Kirk Strosahl. As you'll see on these videos, he has a powerful presence. But he makes it clear that he is not interested in having students imitate him, but instead he wants practitioners to find what is useful in ACT and apply it to their own works. As he stated in our interview, "ACT processes and procedures allow you to fit what you’re doing to the needs of an individual and create things on the fly and do things that make sense to you clinically, and yet know that you’re practicing inside an evidence-based care framework. It’s nice to not have to check your mind at the door and leave behind some of the deeper clinical issues that interest you. You don’t have to minimize or dismiss the complexity of human beings in order to make it on the list of evidence-based treatments."
Note: Cover artwork from painting by Victor Yalom