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Acceptance and Commitment Therapy

Most adult psychotherapies deal, implicitly or explicitly, with the effect of client thoughts and feelings on overt behavior. In the usual view, certain undesirable emotions or thoughts are believed to produce undesirable patterns of living. On that basis, these thoughts or emotions are targeted for change, control, or elimination. Such a normative focus in psychology is readily revealed both in the way behavioral disorders and their treatment technologies are named (e.g., disorders are “anxiety disorders” or “affective disorders”; treatments are “panic control therapy” or “cognitive restructuring”).

In a behavior-analytic view, behavior includes everything that organisms do in interaction with the world, including subtle or private events such as thinking or feeling, but the relation between one psychological action and another always occurs in a ...

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