How to Evolve a More Vital Life

If you are reading this blog, you are probably the sort of person who wants a life that is vital.  According to Steve Hayes, ACT helps us to evolve more vitality by:

1.Undermining Repertoire Narrowing Processes 

What this means in everyday language is that when we are in the grip of strong emotions or have been hooked by painful thoughts our behaviour tends to narrow down and become inflexible. ACT aims to lessen this tendency so that we can choose our behaviour from a broader range of options. This means we can stop doing what we have always done (which tends to get us what we have always got) and start choosing our behaviour based on the circumstances and our values.

2. Situating action in the conscious present

Instead of our actions being triggered by memories of the past, or fears about the future, or inflexible rules; we observe the world as it is and take action based on this connection to the present moment.

3. Choosing your selection criteria

Rather than accepting the criteria the world has given us for what constitutes success or ‘correct’ behaviour, we choose our own values and use these values to guide our actions.

And so we evolve a more vital life

Flexibly choosing our behaviour based on both our values and what the situation offers, enables us to create more richness and vitality in our lives.

The research is growing that the approaches taken by ACT are successful in achieving these outcomes, which is rather cool for those of us interested in empirically supported interventions.

6 thoughts on “How to Evolve a More Vital Life

  1. Rachel

    Can you recommend a place to start to identify my values? Of course, I have an idea what they are but I’d really benefit from some clarity around this and would like to come up with a more concise list that is worded well.

    Thank you again for another thought provoking post.

  2. Hi Judy,
    I am writing a two part blog post on this very subject next. When I’ve posted them, I;d be interested to know your views and your own thoughts on how to work with values effectively.
    all the best,
    Rob

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