My Current Therapy Practicum At Hartgrove Hospital

3718 Words Dec 10th, 2014 15 Pages
My current therapy practicum at Hartgrove Hospital is primarily focused on Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy but as I have been working with clients over the past 6 months, I have experienced some personal and professional discrepancies between the theory of CBT and how I conceptualize clients and my role as a therapist. The hospital emphasizes the teaching of coping skills, which in line with CBT has the client learning new ways of handling their emotions. While I agree that teaching coping skills, cognitive restructuring, etc. are important for many clients, I have consistently felt like something was missing. I have been exposed to Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT) briefly in the past during my classes and during a didactic at practicum, but I have not done an in-depth examination of how it differs from CBT and what its theoretical and philosophical bases are. I wanted to take this paper as an opportunity to learn more about a therapy that may fit better with how I work with clients and how I view my role as a therapist.
An Overview of ACT In the early development of ACT, Hayes and his first doctoral student, Zettle, were interested in the role of language in clinical conditions, which was an important part of Skinner’s radical behaviorism (Cullen, 2008). This work occurred in parallel to when Hayes was developing “comprehensive distancing,” which essentially emphasized that attempts to control thoughts and feelings are often counter-productive and make the problem…
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