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Acceptance and Commitment Therapy for Mental Health

Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT) emphasizes acceptance of internal experiences (such as thoughts and emotions), commitment to values-based action, and mindfulness.


The goal of ACT is not to eliminate difficult thoughts or feelings, but rather to change the relationship individuals have with these experiences so they can pursue a meaningful and values-driven life.

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How Does Alter Use Acceptance and Commitment Therapy?

Helping clients align their actions to their values for more meaningful lives

Our therapists help clients accept their thoughts, emotions, and physical sensations without judgment, making room for all internal experiences. Then, we help clients identify their values so they can match their internal and external worlds.

Benefits of Acceptance and Commitment Therapy

Useful for Conditions

Acceptance and Commitment Therapy Techniques & Uses in the Treatment Process

Technique #1 - Mindfulness

Mindfulness empowers clients to pay attention to the present moment with openness and acceptance of emotions without judgment.


By developing mindfulness skills, clients can increase psychological flexibility and cultivate a greater sense of inner peace and clarity.

Technique #2 - Values Clarification

By clarifying their core values, clients identify what truly matters to them and commit to taking actions that are aligned with their principles.


This process helps clients live in accordance with their authentic selves, fostering a sense of fulfillment and vitality even in the face of life’s challenges.

Technique #3 - Commitment to Action

ACT emphasizes the importance of taking committed action towards values-driven goals, even in the presence of discomfort or difficult emotions. Therapists work with clients to identify concrete steps they can take to move toward a life that reflects their values.


By breaking goals down into manageable tasks and learning to tolerate discomfort, clients can overcome obstacles and create meaningful change in their lives.

Frequently Ask Questions About Acceptance and Commitment Therapy

What is Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT)?
Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT) is a type of cognitive behavioral therapy that emphasizes acceptance of uncomfortable thoughts and feelings while committing to actions aligned with personal values. It combines mindfulness techniques with behavioral strategies to help individuals live more fully in the present moment and pursue meaningful lives.
While both ACT and CBT aim to alleviate psychological distress, they differ in their approaches. ACT focuses on accepting difficult thoughts and emotions rather than challenging or changing them. It emphasizes mindfulness, values clarification, and commits action to promote psychological flexibility and well-being.
ACT incorporates various techniques, including mindfulness exercises, values clarification, and committed action plans. Mindfulness techniques help individuals observe their thoughts and emotions without judgment, while values clarification helps identify core values that guide behavior. Committed action involves setting goals aligned with these values and taking steps to achieve them.

ACT has been shown to be effective in treating anxiety and depression by helping individuals develop greater psychological flexibility and resilience. By accepting difficult emotions and committing to valued actions, individuals can reduce experiential avoidance and live more fully despite their symptoms.

Yes, ACT can be beneficial for a range of mental health conditions, including eating disorders, workplace stress, and chronic pain. Its emphasis on acceptance, mindfulness, and values-based action can help individuals cope with a variety of psychological challenges.

The duration of ACT therapy varies depending on individual needs and treatment goals. Some clients may benefit from short-term interventions focused on specific issues, while others may engage in longer-term therapy to address underlying patterns of psychological inflexibility.
In ACT sessions, therapists typically guide clients through mindfulness exercises, values clarification exercises, and discussions about committed action plans. Clients are encouraged to practice acceptance of their thoughts and emotions and to take steps towards living in accordance with their values.
Yes, ACT has been supported by empirical research and randomized controlled trials, demonstrating its efficacy in treating various mental health problems. Its principles are grounded in contextual behavioral science and have been found to be effective across diverse populations.
Integrating ACT principles into everyday life involves practicing mindfulness, clarifying personal values, and taking committed action toward valued goals. By cultivating acceptance and aligning actions with values, individuals can lead more meaningful and fulfilling lives.
Yes, ACT can be integrated with other forms of therapy, such as medication management or traditional talk therapy, depending on individual needs. It can complement existing treatments and enhance overall well-being.

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