Get Out of Your Mind and Into Your Life: The New Acceptance and Commitment Therapy
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Get Out of Your Mind and Into Your Life: The New Acceptance and Commitment Therapy

3.94 of 5 stars 3.94  ·  rating details  ·  387 ratings  ·  35 reviews
Get ready to take a different perspective on your problems and your life—and the way you live it.

Acceptance and commitment therapy (ACT) is a new, scientifically based psychotherapy that takes a fresh look at why we suffer and even what it means to be mentally healthy. What if pain were a normal, unavoidable part of the human condition, but avoiding or trying to control...more
Paperback, 224 pages
Published November 1st 2005 by New Harbinger Publications (first published September 30th 2005)
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Steven C. Hayes' "acceptance and commitment therapy," or ACT, is the "you are not your thoughts" philosophy of cognitive behavioral therapy with a different label slapped on top of it.

I found this book pedantic and dry, which is really not a necessary component of a self-help book. In fact, I would hope that a book about getting back into one's life would be sort of the opposite.

Yes, there were some useful exercises contained herein. However, I honestly could not recommend it to a friend or coll...more
As much as I want to agree with the stop-thinking asceticism of cognitive behaviorism meets buddhism ("We're not saying don't feel your feelings! Feel them so deeply you don't care! Um! This makes sense to me sometimes while I'm at ACT therapy seminars!"), it just doesn't work for the more think-y among us. I like being in my mind. Being in my mind is being in my life. Finding varying ways to relate to pain -- sometimes cowering from it and sometimes snuggling up to it -- is what marks me as a h...more
This is far and away the most usefull and insightful self help/therapy book I have ever used. I chose the word "used" over "read" quite intentionally. I did not use it in a vacuum- rather did it while in therapy with a trained ACT therapist. That isn't to say that it couldn't be helpful on its own. It is important that you do the activities and I believe it is essential to discuss with another your activities, thoughts and impression.

Let me finish with this. I sincerely believe in ACT- and I bel...more
Jen Marin
I probably wouldn't have read this book if it hadn't been assigned. It might make a fine introduction to the material, but I have read other books on mindfulness based psychology that appealed to me more. Written in a workbook style, the authors invite the reader to take stock of their patterns, accept their faults, and find out what it is that they really want out of life. Commitment to action in congruence with our values provides us with ballast when times are rough as well as with trajectory...more
Ahmed Abdelsattar
I think the book tells us that blaming doesn't help because it's a negative behavior.
Response-ability is related to mindful thinking.
The keyword to be better is mindfulness.
The book should have been written in a more simple language.
We must observe our negative feelings because they lead to more negative feelings so we go deeper and deeper in sadness>>
Really we are creatures of our history and we are imprisoned in it.
The exercises are hard to do because they need too much imagination, they...more
ACT is a powerful therapy. I recommend this book to anyone who has experienced episodes of depression or anxiety.
The book held one distraction for me - it kept justifying it's own existence and assuming skepticism on the part of the reader. Maybe that's well-founded in many cases, but I thought it was unhelpful.
Oct 18, 2008 John rated it 1 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: no one
This is a slow, slow read, with too many exercies that do not lead you very far into understaning the authors aims. The book meanders, is excessively long, and all of what is said could fit into a smaller, better edited work. I kept thinking as I read--what is the point.
Jan 05, 2008 Sally rated it 5 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: people wanting to help themselves effectively.
A very helpful book for those wishing to take charge of their lives and not be controled by their undesirable feelings, thoughts, etc. Combines Eastern wisdom and behaviorist psychology for a very effective combination.
Jun 05, 2013 Jon rated it 4 of 5 stars
Shelves: 2013
I enjoyed learning a little about this theory of change and psychotherapy. I look forward to learning a little more about the approach. The writing was a little difficult at times, but the ideas seem solid to me.
One of the best and most useful "self help" books I've encountered. A bit of this, a bit of that. Highly recommended.
Lorain Thompson
Didn't finish this one. Had some interesting Ideas, but I didn't agree with how they leave things.
I stopped reading this because it was hokey and not helpful.
There's a story about a Cynic, maybe Diogenes himself, in which the philosopher distrusts his own senses so much that his students have to follow him around, lest he walk off cliffs or into burning buildings.

I always think of that story whenever I look at my wife's psychology books. Not that I distrust psychology or my own senses, mind you -- it just seems metaphysically weird to use the mind to diagnose the mind. After all, my mind is the only one to which I have "privileged access" (I think th...more
BasementBoi BasementBoi
Great book! I found Cognitive behavior therapy always a bit esoteric and idealistic, because it put so much focus on the content of your thoughts.
ACT was developed from a radical behaviorist background, and concentrates on the context of thoughts and feelings, which to me, seems much more helpful, because you learn, that you still can behave/live your life the way you want, even in the face of difficult psychological content.
It is not neccessary to change your thoughts or feelings, before you...more
Basically the source book for ACT...but fairly complicated for the average reader or therapist. For the therapist I'd recommend ACT Made Simple
Claire Lehmann
Steven Haye’s approach to treating anxiety deftly combines aspects post-structuralist knowledge (i.e. the power of language to influence experience) with evolutionary psychology (e.g. the functionality of cognitions/emotions). For me, this book was good, but I was a little put off by the constant exercises required of its ‘workbook’ format.

For the readers who wish to delve more deeply into Haye’s theoretical approach, I would suggest looking up ‘Relational Frame Theory’. Unfortunately there don...more
As much as I am committed to ACT principles I really had trouble staying with this book. It is difficult to read/absorb and I've had quite a bit of ACT training. I wanted it to be good and I wanted to refer it to others, but I no longer do so.
This was good. I appreciated many of the things said in it, and how it was explained. I will say that since i listened to this as an audiobook, an unfortunate side effect of having heard this book is I will always know that 'gub-gubs' go 'Woooooo' (an example used several times throughout the text using nonsense words, which become drilled into your brain by repetition). Still, if you are looking for a book aimed at helping you change habits, this might be the one you want.
Somewhere in my websurfing, I came across the idea of "Acceptance and Commitment Therapy" (ACT) and was intrigued and wanted to read more. Don't remember where I came across this book title -- maybe from reading reviews on Amazon -- but I put a reserve on it at the library. Now it's due back, before I had a chance to read it. Maybe that's not a good sign that I looked at it a few times and didn't pick it up again -- but may be worth taking a closer look at it again later.
Sep 12, 2010 Ryan is currently reading it
Recommends it for: anyone with anxiety, depression, addictions, or dealing with traumatic events.
Recommended to Ryan by: Proffesor at Brigham Young University
Shelves: inspirational
Yes, as is the case with most creative geniuses (i.e. the Joker), I have mental problems. This book seems way ahead of its time. It teaches you to just stop caring about stuff you can't change. Imagine that...being happy even when you're not. If you're confused now, wait until you read the book. I think I need to hire a psychologist to explain it to me.
I've been reading it a lot less lately....either the book is working or I'm losing interest.
Melissa H.
Great primer on ACT.
Excellently clear explanation of how the linguistic activity of the human mind generates suffering, and how to reprogram your thoughts to escape unnecessary suffering. Full of exercises for identifying and freeing oneself of unhelpful behavior patterns, and replacing them with more helpful patterns.
Dense workbook that's worth the effort. An accessible tool for gaining understanding and experience in Acceptance and Commitment Therapy. Taking a class in ACT for my MSW and it will likely be one of my primary therapeutic tools with future clients.
Jennifer James
Acceptance and Commitment Therapy is a new evidence- and research-based therapy that draws deeply from Buddhism. The key is to embrace mindfulness and to commit to living fully instead of avoiding problems that cause pain. Very helpful book.
I only had time to read half of it before it had to be returned to the library, but I didn't mind very much. The author makes some good points but if you stripped away all the metaphors there wouldn't be much left to read.
The approach is new: living in your mind, wich means giving big importance to your feelings,ideas...may make you forget to live your life: pursue your values and achieve your goals!
Callie Carling
As fascinated as I am by ACT, from a professional and personal perspective, I found this just too difficult to plough through. A shame as I am sure it would be of great benefit!
Es un libro muy interesante. Los primeros capítulos por su introducción a la teoría del marco relacional y los finales por su explicación de los valores.
I love the work and concepts of ACT but this was not the best written book on the topic!
Jul 28, 2013 LaReina marked it as gave-up-on
Shelves: non-fiction
I can't read this book for five minutes straight let alone finish it. Giving up on it.
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Steven C. Hayes, PhD, is Nevada Foundation Professor in the department of psychology at the University of Nevada. An author of thirty-four books and more than 470 scientific articles, he has shown in his research how language and thought leads to human suffering, and cofounded ACT, a powerful therapy method that is useful in a wide variety of areas. Hayes has been president of several scientific s...more
More about Steven C. Hayes...
Acceptance and Commitment Therapy: An Experiential Approach to Behavior Change Mindfulness and Acceptance: Expanding the Cognitive-Behavioral Tradition Relational Frame Theory: A Post-Skinnerian Account of Human Language and Cognition A Practical Guide to Acceptance and Commitment Therapy Acceptance and Mindfulness at Work: Applying Acceptance and Commitment Therapy and Relational Frame Theory to Organizational Behavior Management

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