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Acceptance and Commitment Therapy for Anxiety Disorders: A Practitioner's Treatment Guide to Using Mindfulness, Acceptance, and Values-Based Behavior Change Strategies

4.9 out of 5 stars 17 customer reviews
ISBN-13: 978-1572244276
ISBN-10: 1572244275
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Editorial Reviews


“In a nuanced and creative inversion of traditional approaches to the treatment of anxiety, Eifert and Forsyth offer clients the possibility of relinquishing their struggles with anxiety, by “treating” the struggle as the problem and letting fear play out to an increasingly disinterested audience of one. Acceptance, commitment, and mindfulness are essential to this process, and this book clearly lays the type of experiential learning foundation that allows clients to embody these concepts and, through their actions, develop a new relationship with their fears. This book will certainly become a vital clinical resource for any therapist, student or educator in the field of anxiety disorders.”
—Zindel V. Segal, Ph.D., the Morgan Firestone Chair in Psychotherapy and professor of psychiatry and psychology at the University of Toronto and author of Mindfulness-Based Cognitive Therapy for Depression

“Eifert and Forsyth present the complexities and nuances of acceptance and commitment therapy for anxiety disorders in a fascinating and conceptually illuminating style and in a manner that is amply detailed to guide clinical practice. The principles that underlie acceptance and commitment therapy—to relinquish attempts to control internal states and instead focus upon valued life directions and goals—are brought to life with excellent case examples throughout their step-by-step guide for treating anxiety disorders. This book will be an invaluable resource for theoreticians and clinicians, novice and experienced alike.”
—Michelle G. Craske, Ph.D., director of the Anxiety Disorders Behavioral Research Program at the University of California, Los Angeles and author of Origins of Phobias and Anxiety Disorders

“Eifert and Forsyth have done something revolutionary! They have taken the treatment of anxiety disorders far beyond the disease model that CBT has been stuck in by brilliantly examining the core psychological processes that make fear and anxiety disordered and explaining in clear language what all anxiety disorders have in common. Their conceptualization of fear and anxiety demonstrates the cutting edge of clinical research and development within CBT and its development into the so-called third wave behavior therapies. The book contains innovative and user-friendly session-by-session guidelines on how to apply ACT for all the major anxiety disorders. This therapist guide should be on every clinical psychology program’s reading list. It is truly an eye opener and a huge step forward in how we view and treat the suffering associated with anxiety disorders.”
—JoAnne Dahl, Ph.D., professor of clinical psychology at the University of Uppsala, Sweden, and author of Living Beyond Pain and Pain: A Vital Friend

“Behavior therapy is undergoing extraordinary change. Mindfulness, acceptance, and values-oriented interventions are increasingly being included in interventions for a wide variety of problems in living. Eifert and Forsyth’s new anxiety text is a stunning example of the potential for this new wave of behavior therapies to remain connected to their scientific roots while exploring emerging treatment issues and technologies. This book is a must for the bookshelves of both clinicians and treatment developers.”
—Kelly G. Wilson, Ph.D., assistant professor of psychology at the University of Mississippi and coauthor of Acceptance and Commitment Therapy

“This book provides concrete treatment guidelines that are firmly grounded in a new and intriguing approach to emotion regulation: Acceptance and Commitment Therapy. The authors are well known for their rigorous scientific studies and theoretical contributions to the field of anxiety disorders and behavior analysis. This book further demonstrates that they are highly skilled clinicians and masterful educators who are able to translate complex theories into simple and clearly formulated treatment techniques. The book is a reflection of the current paradigm shift from the studies of behaviors and cognitions to the study of and emotion regulation and, therefore, is a must-read for both the present and next generation of anxiety researchers.”
—Stefan G. Hofmann, Ph.D., associate professor of psychology at the Center for Stress and Anxiety-Related Disorders at Boston University, and Editor of Cognitive and Behavioral Practice.

Acceptance and Commitment Therapy for Anxiety Disorders provides a detailed, step-by-step account of how therapists can use ACT to help people who are suffering from these problems. Its comprehensiveness and session-by-session guides will help people who are novices to this approach understand and apply the fundamentals of ACT. Experienced ACT practitioners will also find this an extremely valuable resource, as Eifert and Forsyth have deftly tailored core ACT techniques to target the primary issues of people with anxiety-related problems. In addition, this book provides a considerable amount of new and innovative, out-of-session exercises and materials clients can use to strengthen their commitment to move through their anxiety and lead a vital life that they will value. In all, it’s a one-stop-shop ACT guide for treating anxiety disorders.”
—Frank Bond, BA, P.G.Dip., M.Sc., Ph.D., C.Psychol., ICTLHE, senior lecturer in the Department of Psychology at Goldsmiths College, University of London

“This is an extremely useful book for professionals as well as educated clients. Focusing on the broad area of anxiety disorders, it does a superb job demonstrating how acceptance and commitment therapy can be applied to specific disorders. Avoiding the artificial constraints of DSM-IV or ICD-10 classifications of mental disorders, it emphasizes the functional similarities of the anxiety disorders and their common treatment strategies while at the same time taking into account some of their unique aspects.”
—Rainer F. Sonntag, MD, psychiatrist and psychotherapist in private practice in Olpe, Germany

“Eifert and Forsyth are interpreters rather than the creators of acceptance and commitment therapy (ACT). So when they explain its value for the treatment of anxiety, they ground their commitment to this approach in their own extensive clinical and research experience in anxiety disorders, not in uncritical acceptance. Because they really understand the psychology of anxiety, they have produced an authoritative, beautifully written, usable manual for clinicians. Calling it a manual, however, belies its theoretical sophistication and its ability to inspire rather than stipulate. These properties make it particularly useful in diverse cultural and global contexts, where it can easily be molded to the real lives of real clients.”
—Ian M. Evans, Ph.D., professor and head of the School of Psychology at Massey University in Palmerston North, New Zealand, fellow of the American Psychological Association and the Royal Society of New Zealand, and author of Nonaversive Behavioral Interventions

From the Publisher

From this much-anticipated book, therapists will learn how to integrate acceptance and commitment therapy (ACT) treatments for anxiety disorders into their practices. It is the first text to adapt ACT principles and techniques specifically for the treatment of anxiety disorders, presenting them in a clear and systematic step-by-step format.

Product Details

  • Hardcover: 304 pages
  • Publisher: New Harbinger Publications (August 1, 2005)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1572244275
  • ISBN-13: 978-1572244276
  • Product Dimensions: 10.5 x 7.1 x 1 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.8 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (17 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #475,858 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
The authors have integrated an extremely large body of work on mindfulness, acceptance, emotion regulation, cognitive and behavioral treatments, and anxiety into a concise and readable book. To my knowledge, this is the first book to provide a step-by-step handbook for clinicians interested in using mindfulness and acceptance based techniques with clients who are suffering. Thus, this is an enormous asset to all health professionals.

The title of the book is deceptive because it is not just relevant to anxiety disorders. It is also relevant to understanding and working with general human suffering. Additionally, this is an excellent text for researchers and graduate students, as well as anyone who wants to apply these principles to their own lives (without necessarily seeking professional help).

Todd B. Kashdan, Ph.D.
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Format: Hardcover
Eifert and Forsyth come up with the first unified treatment for all anxiety disorders that actually works--an accomplishment that deserves a place in the history of psychotherapy. They do a superb job at making their protocol accessible to therapists that are new to acceptance and commitment therapy (ACT), including students. In the first chapters of the book, the authors explain with both rigor and clarity what ACT is all about, and contrast it with CBT. In a nutshell, while CBT focuses on symptom management and reduction, ACT focuses on symptom acceptance and doing, in spite of all the inner stuff that may show up, for purposes of living a chosen, valued life. ACT claims convincingly that the road to a good life and mental health is not trying to feel good, but to become able to do what is required (i.e., act) to live a meaningful life, guided by a person's valued directions. ACT is a new, powerful therapy, already with remarkable empirical support, that combines the best of what the psychotherapy world has to offer, that is, acceptance- and mindfulness-based, as well as experiential and existential-humanistic therapies with behavioral interventions, in particular exposure. Maybe exposure work, perhaps the main contribution of the behavioral traidition to psychotherapy, best illustrates the contrats between ACT and CBT: while in CBT exposure is undertaken with the purpose of reducing symptomatology, in ACT it is undertaken with the purpose of increasing behavioral flexibility, i.e., expanding the behavioral repertoire of the person in the presence of anxiety provoking stimuli, and ultimately actualize willingness to move in the direction of the person's values. A truly extraordinary book, and a must read for any therapist who hopes to remain in the cutting edge of his profession.Read more ›
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Format: Hardcover
In the wake of the growing popularity of acceptance and commitment therapy (ACT), a number of books have been written that detail the ACT philosophy and approach to therapy. However, none is better than the recently published Acceptance and Commitment Therapy for Anxiety Disorders by Georg H. Eifert and John P. Forsyth. Although the book is focused on treating anxiety disorders, the principles and techniques that are discussed are so far reaching that they are pertinent to the treatment of other types of psychopathology. Thus, this book is simply not just a `must read' for those who specialize in treating anxiety disorders but rather it is a book from which any psychotherapist at any level could benefit. What sets this book apart from others that describe the ACT and other like-minded approaches to therapy is that the authors have made the concepts easily digestible and the text effortless to read. At the same time, however, the authors have managed to keep the philosophy and approach undiluted. The techniques and "how-tos" are also presented in caring detail and integrated along with guidelines for case conceptualization. Another asset of the book is that the authors make every attempt to ground their approach in the state of the art psychological science. Not all "how-to" therapy books are as successful as this one in translating science into practice.

The book is divided into three sections. The first section entails a brief discussion of the ACT approach as well as an overview of the anxiety disorders and how more traditional cognitive-behavioral approaches conceptualize and treat anxiety disorders. In the next section of the book, the construct of anxiety and the findings from previous research are reframed in a manner that is consistent with ACT.
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Format: Hardcover
Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT) and other "third-wave" behavioral approaches are changing the way many view psychopathology and processes of psychotherapeutic change. Eifert and Forsyth's ACT for Anxiety Disorders is an engaging and easy-to-comprehend book that should serve as a great introduction for those interested in learning more. With both integrative discussion of the theory behind this work and detailed clinical guidelines, it is an excellent resource for anyone wishing to incorporate mindfulness and acceptance-based approaches into his or her clinical work and/or research. Students consistently praise this book's readability and relevance; especially appreciated are the handouts that may be tailored to the specifics of a given client or target problem.
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