International Journal of Psychology and Psychological Therapy

Volume 16 Num. 3 - October 2016


Difficulties and therapist’s barriers while learning ACT

Volume 16 Num. 3 - October 2016 - Pages 357-373


Carmen Luciano , Francisco J. Ruiz , Bárbara Gil Luciano , Luis Jorge Ruiz Sánchez


Contextual therapies are at its peak nowadays, as plenty of workshops, expertise courses, conferences on this matter are given every year around the world. Acceptance and Committment Therapy (ACT) is a contextual therapy that gathers a vast empirical evidence, and its application is currently widespread to multiple contexts. Nevertheless, when learning ACT some difficulties can arise, especially when theory and practice, as the two sides of the same coin, are set apart. Learning ACT involves the theotherical-applied dimension about the laws concerning human behavior, especially about human language. Moreover, about the conditions under which these laws applied to the processes and methods to generate psychological flexibility. While learning ACT, one of the main problems is related to learn ACT methods or tools without a basic, systematic, precise and contextualized training. An additional problem is related to the difficulties that emerge in the therapists themselves when interacting upon their clients behavior. Their actions might not to be frequently adjusted to the function of their clients’ behaviors -and, consequently, there should not be the appropriate context for helping the client to interact with his/her own private events without losing the direction of a valued-life. These latter difficulties have been named “the therapist’s barriers”. The present article addresses part of this problem. The experience gathered in researching and training professionals in ACT is briefly described, and some effective interventions are presented. This advances over the need in isolating, experimentally, these ways of proceeding.

How to cite: Luciano C, Ruiz FJ, Gil-Luciano B, & Ruiz-Sánchez LJ (2016). Dificultades y barreras del terapeuta en el aprendizaje de la Terapia de Aceptación y Compromiso (ACT) [Difficulties and therapist’s barriers while learning ACT]. International Journal of Psychology and Psychological Therapy, 16, 357-374.

Key words:

ACT, psychological flexibility, experiential avoidance, therapist’s barriers, private events, ACT training

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