Ballet Dancers

There are six core processes that are central to acceptance and commitment therapy (ACT): acceptance, cognitive defusion, present-moment awareness, self-as-context, values, and committed action. Growing evidence suggests that these processes counteract the development and maintenance of many, if not all, mental health issues by boosting psychological flexibility.

Close up of two people, holding hands

In these first decades of the twenty-first century, compassion and self-compassion are increasingly being researched and applied as active, empirically supported process variables in psychotherapy. This might not seem surprising, given that compassion has been at the center of contemplative practices for emotional healing for at least 2,600 years.

Little girl with ballons running in a field

Editor’s note: The following is an interview with Christopher McCurry, PhD, a clinical child psychologist in private practice specializing in the treatment of childhood anxiety. Dr. McCurry is a clinical assistant professor in the departments of psychology and psychiatry at the University of Washington in Seattle, WA. He is the author of Parenting Your Anxious Child with Mindfulness and Acceptance.

Dog hunting for truffles in the woods

Editor’s note: The following is an interview with Jenna LeJeune, PhD, co-founder and director of clinical services at Portland Psychotherapy Clinic, Research, and Training Center in Portland, Oregon. Dr. LeJeune has trained professionals in acceptance and commitment therapy worldwide.

Portrait of Emily Sandoz with forrested background

Editor’s note: The following is an interview with Emily Sandoz, PhD, international peer-reviewed ACT trainer, professor in the psychology department at the University of Louisiana at Lafayette, and clinical psychologist.

Photo of a girl drawing an image of the girl drawing herself in the photo.

Editor’s note: The following is an interview with Louise McHugh, PhD. Dr. McHugh is a researcher and co-author of The Self and Perspective Taking: Contributions and Applications from Modern Behavioral Science. Her research interests include perspective taking, autism, acceptance and change therapies and the development and training of complex cognitive skills. She has published more than thirty papers in peer-reviewed journals.

Picture of a brain in high activity

Cognitive defusion is a relatively new name for an old process that is central to Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT). Based on the idea that taking our thoughts too literally is often problematic, defusion techniques are designed to de-literalize our thoughts, exposing language’s inability to capture the full depth of our experiences or describe our lives and our world with perfect accuracy.

By Tom Szabo, PhD, BCBA-D​

Have you ever found yourself teaching a parent to be contingent and discovered that his self-rules are interfering with his ABA follow-through? A few examples might help: “I can’t handle this – it’s not what I’m good at. I’m the Dad.” Or, “Can’t you just do your job and heal my kid. You’re the behavior analyst.” Another one you might have heard is, “What if I can’t do all that?”

BootCamp Attendees

By Steve Hayes and Jacqueline Pistorello

ACT BootCamp is an intense, 4-day, experiential and skill-building training event. It typically brings together workshop attendees of varying experience which makes it a rich opportunity for all involved.


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