The ACT Matrix: A New Approach to Building Psychological Flexibility Across Settings and Populations


Health & Psychology | New Releases

If you are an ACT practitioner or mental health professional, this eagerly awaited resource is an essential addition to your professional library. Acceptance and commitment therapy (ACT) is an evidence-based therapy that has been successful in treating a variety of psychological issues, such anxiety, depression, substance abuse, trauma, eating disorders, and more. In contrast to other treatment options, ACT has proven extremely effective in helping clients who are "stuck" in unhealthy thought patterns by encouraging them align their values with their thoughts and actions. However, the ACT model is complex, and it's not always easy to use. Traditionally, ACT is delivered with a focus around six core processes that are often referred to as the hexaflex: cognitive defusion, acceptance, contact with the present moment, observing the self, values, and committed action. Each of these core processes serves a specific function, but they are often made more complex than needed in both theory and in practice. So what if there was a way to simplify ACT in your sessions with clients?
Edited by clinical psychologist and popular ACT workshop leader Kevin Polk, The ACT Matrix fuses the six core principles of acceptance and commitment therapy (ACT) into a simplified, easy-to-apply approach that focuses on client actions and behavior as workable or unworkable, rather than good or bad. Most importantly, you'll learn how this innovative approach can be used to deliver ACT more effectively in a variety of settings and contexts, even when clients are resistant or unmotivated to participate. With contributions by Benjamin Schoendorff, Mark Webster, and more, this is the first book to utilize the ACT Matrix model, and it is a must-read for any ACT practitioner looking to streamline his or her therapeutic approach.


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"In "The ACT Matrix," editors Kevin Polk and Benjamin Schoendorff simplify the entire ACT model into two basic distinctions. The first two chapters of the book, written by the editors and collaborators, summarize the matrix diagram by discriminating between sensory and mental experiencing and between moving toward versus away from your values. These are well-written and entertaining. I was unfamiliar with the matrix, and after reading these introductory paragraphs, I had a good feel for what the work would look and feel like with a client in the therapy room. "The remaining chapters of the book apply to specific settings, presenting problems and populations. I believe that you could skip to whatever work you most commonly do, or read straight through--either would be useful! These chapters are written by practitioners who are experts in each of the areas, and the subtle details of how the matrix can be used differently with each issue really shine through. I believe this will be a great addition to many office bookshelves, and I would say to pick up a copy right away!" --Amy R. Murrell, PhD, associate professor at the University of North Texas

Editor Kevin L. Polk, PhD, is a clinical psychologist who has been a practicing for twenty-three years, primarily helping veterans and others with troubling trauma memories. While in graduate school he learned psychodynamic and family systems therapy, and then for practical reasons he learned and practiced cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) for fifteen years. For the past eight years he has studied acceptance and commitment training and therapy (ACT), spending close to 20,000 hours studying the philosophy and theory behind ACT, learning and designing ACT interventions. He is a peer reviewed ACT trainer who is passionate about teaching others how to use the Matrix to increase psychological flexibility and valued living around the world. Editor Benji Schoendorf, MSc, MPs, is the author of two French language books, one about ACT in general and the other about functional analytic psychotherapy. Both of his books are based on the Matrix diagram.

General Fields

  • : 9781608829231
  • : New Harbinger Publications
  • : New Harbinger
  • : January 2014
  • : 229mm X 155mm X 17mm
  • : books

Special Fields

  • : Paperback
  • : 616.89
  • : JM
  • : figures