Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT) is an evidence-based approach to counselling which incorporates mindfulness and self-compassion as a means of embracing life with more flexibility and choice in how we respond to our experiences. Attention is on learning to be with our thoughts and emotions in the moment, learning to surf them and use them as tools for growth without getting caught up in them.
Mindfulness practices are inherently self-regulating, and have proved to be a source of relief for clients experiencing a variety of presenting concerns, in particular for those experiencing anxiety.
“Mindfulness means paying attention in a particular way: on purpose, in the present moment, and non judgmentally” – Jon Kabat-Zinn
At times when we pause and become aware of our inner world, we realize that underlying the concerns that brought us to counselling there is a deep pain of feeling not good enough, a voice full of judgements, shoulds, self-blame and shame. Embracing mindfulness practices along with self-compassion is the antidote that can sooth these voices and create space for gentle loving-kindness. When we feel better about ourselves we are able to see our situation more clearly and make healthier choices in times of struggle.