Consultant Clinical Psychologist

t : 03335 772 141

Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT)

Acceptance and Commitment Therapy, known as “ACT” (pronounced as the word “act”) is a mindfulness-based behavioural therapy that utilises an eclectic mix of metaphor, paradox, and mindfulness skills, along with a wide range of experiential exercises and values-guided behavioural interventions. ACT has proven effective with a diverse range of clinical conditions: depression, OCD, workplace stress, chronic pain, the stress of terminal cancer, anxiety and PTSD among others.

ACT is a therapy firmly based in the tradition of empirical science, yet has a major emphasis on values, forgiveness, acceptance, compassion, and living in the present moment.

The goal of ACT is to create a rich and meaningful life, while accepting the pain that inevitably goes with it. “ACT” is a good abbreviation, because this therapy is about taking effective action guided by our deepest values and in which we are fully present and engaged. It is only through mindful action that we can create a meaningful life.

When we observe our private experiences with openness and receptiveness, even the most painful thoughts, feelings, sensations and memories can seem less threatening or unbearable. ACT processes help us to transform our relationship with painful thoughts and feelings and potentially reduce their impact and influence over our lives.

ACT can be used both as brief therapy or long term therapy, in a wide range of clinical populations. Instead of following a manualised protocol, ACT allows the therapist to create and individualise mindfulness techniques to suit clients’ needs.

The range of ACT interventions to develop these skills is vast and continues to grow, ranging from traditional meditations on the breath through to cognitive defusion.


© Angela Gilchrist, Registered Clinical Psychologist


t : 03335 772 141


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