Acceptance and commitment therapy (ACT) is a form of psychotherapy that uses acceptance and mindfulness strategies along with commitment and behavior-change strategies to increase psychological flexibility. ACT differs from some other kinds of cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) in that rather than trying to teach people to better control their thoughts, feelings, sensations, memories, and desires, ACT teaches them to “just notice,” accept, and embrace their thoughts and feelings, especially previously unwanted ones.
Through ACT, people learn to stop avoiding, denying, and struggling with their inner emotions and, instead, accept that these deeper feelings are appropriate responses to situations that should not prevent them from moving forward in their lives. With this understanding, clients begin to accept their hardships and commit to making necessary changes in their behavior, regardless of what is going on in their lives and how they feel about it.
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