Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT) is an evidence-based treatment model that uses acceptance and mindfulness strategies, combined with and behavior change strategies, to improve life satisfaction and decrease suffering. This model focuses on increasing psychological flexibility, which is the ability to remain grounded in the present moment and select the most effective coping strategy for any given situation, versus acting solely on emotional impulses. ACT promotes acceptance of past mistakes and painful events, and encourages individuals to engage in behaviors based on core values, thus leading to a more fulfilling life and less internal distress over time. Clients learn how language used to describe experiences, both internally and externally, interferes with movement toward goals. Exposure exercises are also used in ACT to help clients challenge long-held myths about the self, others, and the world. ACT is typically delivered through weekly individual sessions; however, as in every case, the frequency of sessions will be determined during the initial assessment process with Dr. Waterman.
Cognitive-behavior therapy is a short-term, goal-oriented treatment approach aimed at teaching clients problem-solving strategies to overcome current challenges. The model illuminates the relationship between thoughts, emotions, and behaviors and focuses on changing problematic patterns through psychoeducation, self-monitoring interventions, and behavioral modification exercises. CBT is one of the most widely practiced and researched treatment models with support for it’s effectiveness in treating adult clients with depression, anxiety, substance abuse, relationship conflict, anger and aggression problems, and child and adolescent disorders, among others.
CBT is typically delivered via weekly individual and/or group sessions depending on a client’s needs.
Elizabeth Waterman, Psy.D