When you’re trapped in a struggle with your own mind, it’s a sign you need to try something different. Acceptance and Commitment Therapy or ACT (pronounced like the word, not A-C-T), is an effective behavioural therapy that works. Just how does it work?
The word ‘acceptance’ can be off-putting. “So, have I just got to put-up with my own suffering?” Doesn’t sound very tempting, but ACT is about something much more powerful.
Control is the problem
Have you ever heard the saying, “control is the problem and not the solution”? Well, its right on the money. Its natural to avoid thoughts and feelings you don’t like. We escape situations that seem overwhelming. We put off things that we don’t understand or appear boring. We try to fix negative thoughts by being rational, reassuring ourselves it will be OK or by thinking positive. And, we try to push away fear, guilt, shame, hurt and anger by distracting ourselves, keeping busy or through addiction. The trouble is, these strategies often backfire.
When you spend too much time and energy trying to control your thoughts and feelings, you end up in a far worse situation than when you started. Not only, do you waste incalculable hours on stuff that cannot be controlled, you also neglect the people around you. You stop focusing on living the life you want while you try to fix what’s going on inside your mind. And, with just one life in this world, that is a risk you cannot afford to take.
Learn to let-go
Just like CBT, ACT teaches you new strategies. You’ll learn how to reduce your worry and switch-off from unpleasant thoughts. ACT shows you how the control-strategies you’ve been relying on, in fact, make the problem worse. ACT teaches you new strategies that mean you can let-go of unhelpful thoughts and get better at having painful emotions. Instead of continuing to turn-away from intrusive thoughts and unwanted feelings, you move-in closer to them. When you do this, you become much more powerful. You get to decide what happens in your life, not your thoughts.
This distinction between ‘you’ and your mind is central to ACT. Whilst it might not make much sense to you right now, with just a small amount of practice, you’ll discover that the ‘you’ who can notice everything is a worthy companion. They’ll be with you everywhere you go. They’ll help you connect with people. They’ll help you have more fun. And, they’ll help you push yourself outside your comfort-zone.
Sounds great in theory, but can I be sure it will work for me?
We’ve had the privilege of helping 1000s of people transform their lives in extraordinary ways. During that time, we’ve learned some important lessons about when therapy succeeds and when it fails.
Therapy is a partnership. It’s a professional relationship between you and your therapist. For it to work, you need to build a connection. Your therapist needs to teach you the relevant skills and you need to make regular commitments to your practice out of session. Sound like what you’re looking for?
Call now to book an appointment
To start the process, just get in touch to book an appointment. Give us a call on tel. 0121 523 1108 or send us a confidential email.
We have a choice of qualified skillful therapists. Find the person you’d like to work with below or let us know when you’re available.
You can meet in-person at our offices in central Birmingham’s Jewellery Quarter. Or you can arrange an appointment for online therapy using a simple, friendly and secure video platform.
What are our fees?
Sessions are priced at £80.00 for 60 minutes, including the Initial Consultation. Pay-as-you-go for each appointment through a choice of simple payment methods including: bank transfer, Paypal, PayM, debit/credit card or cash. Discuss the best method with your therapist. You can use health insurance to pay for your sessions. Just get in touch to discuss the details.
Meet our team of ACT Therapists
Call now to book an appointment:
This content was originally published here.