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What Is ACT?

Acceptance and commitment therapy (ACT) is becoming one of the most popular therapies for addiction and mental health treatment. But what is ACT, exactly? This evidence-based method could be a game-changer in your recovery journey.

BlueCrest Health Group therapists engage with clients during our ACT program in New Jersey. Compassionate, insightful discussions help clients build a new relationship with themselves and their journey ahead. Reclaim your future now by calling 888.340.2214.

What Is ACT?

Acceptance and commitment therapy is a talk therapy that uses acceptance and mindfulness strategies mixed in different ways with commitment and behavior-change strategies to increase psychological flexibility.

Psychological flexibility means contacting the present moment fully as a conscious human being and changing or persisting in behavior when doing so serves valued ends. This critical skill set empowers individuals to face the challenges of life and move towards a meaningful and fulfilling life.

Key Concepts of ACT

ACT is built on several key concepts that work together to help individuals develop psychological flexibility. These concepts include:

  • Acceptance – Unlike many traditional forms of therapy that encourage individuals to control or change their thoughts and feelings, ACT promotes acceptance of these internal experiences—especially those beyond their control.
  • Mindfulness – ACT emphasizes living in the present moment and consciously choosing actions rather than being driven by habitual behavior.
  • Values – ACT helps individuals clarify their personal values or what truly matters to them in life.
  • Committed action – ACT encourages commitment to actions that align with one’s values, which leads to a more fulfilling life.

ACT helps individuals change their relationship with difficult thoughts and feelings by learning to accept and observe them without judgment. By increasing this psychological flexibility, individuals can choose how they respond to these internal experiences instead of being controlled by them.

Benefits of ACT

ACT has proven beneficial for individuals dealing with various mental health problems, including addiction, anxiety, depression, and stress. Not only does it enhance psychological flexibility, but it also helps individuals create a rich, full, and meaningful life while effectively handling the pain and stress that life inevitably brings.

Long-term recovery requires more than just abstinence from drugs or alcohol; it involves developing coping skills and creating a fulfilling life beyond addiction. ACT can help individuals gain the awareness, acceptance, and commitment needed to overcome addiction and build a better future.

How ACT Works

ACT employs various therapeutic methods to help individuals. These include:

  • Cognitive defusion – A practice that involves learning to perceive thoughts, images, emotions, and memories as what they are—nothing more than bits of language, words, and pictures—and not what they appear to be (threatening events or dangerous situations).
  • Acceptance exercises – These help teach individuals to open up and make room for painful feelings, sensations, urges, and emotions.
  • Values clarification – Taking time to understand internal values helps individuals discover what truly matters to them.
  • Committed action – This entails setting goals based on these values and taking guided action to achieve them.

Compared with other forms of talk therapy, ACT is relatively flexible. This means that therapists can tailor the approach to fit each individual’s needs and goals.

ACT vs. Other Therapies

While ACT has similarities with other therapeutic approaches, such as cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT) and dialectical behavior therapy (DBT), it has a unique focus on acceptance, mindfulness, and values-driven action. It’s not about eliminating difficult feelings but rather learning to accept them as a part of the human experience.

Enroll in ACT by Calling BlueCrest Health Group Now

By promoting acceptance, mindfulness, and values-driven action, ACT enhances psychological flexibility and helps individuals live a rich, fulfilling life.

Remember, your mental health matters. You are not alone. Reach out to BlueCrest Health Group online or by calling 888.340.2214 to start healing and discovering a better path forward—one without drugs or alcohol.