What is DBT?

DBT means Dialectical Behavior Therapy, which could also be referred to as becoming more open minded. A dialectic is a dialogue between opposites. Dialectical therapy seeks the ability to tolerate opposites and to see truth in more than one perspective. DBT is an offshoot of CBT, or Cognitive Behavioral Therapy. This branch of psychology is aimed at helping you understand your thinking and behavior choices so they are more effective for your life and happiness.

Mindfulness is balancing emotion mind and wise mind.Distress Tolerance is when you have a problem you cannot solve, but you don't want to make it worse.Emotion Regulation is having less negative emotions and vulnerability, and more positive emotional experiences.Interpersonal Effectiveness is asking for what you want and saying no effectively.

Monday, August 31, 2015

Focus Wheel

I love  this video showing this amazing technique to set your intention.  The example shows having a vibrant, healthy and sexy body. 

Here is a template for your printing pleasure:

This is a walkthrough on how to use the Focus Wheel process, given by Abraham-Hicks (http://www.abraham-hicks.com/).

Here is a blank Focus Wheel for you to work with if you don't feel like drawing:

The Focus Wheel is a fantastic little process to use when you want to change your vibrational alignment—in other words, feel better—regarding any subject, whether it be finances, a relationship, or a bodily condition.

After some practice, you can whip your vibration into shape using this process in a matter of a few minutes.
He is in no way affiliated with Abraham-Hicks. At least in this dimension.  http://www.thearvindsingh.blogspot.com/

Set your intention and align your vibration with it!

Sunday, August 9, 2015

ACT processes

The Six Core Processes of ACT


The Psychological Flexibility Model

The general goal of ACT is to increase psychological flexibility – the ability to contact the present moment more fully as a conscious human being, and to change or persist in behavior when doing so serves valued ends. Psychological flexibility is established through six core ACT processes. Each of these areas are conceptualized as a positive psychological skill, not merely a method of avoiding psychopathology.


Acceptance is taught as an alternative to experiential avoidance. Acceptance involves the active and aware embrace of those private events occasioned by one’s history without unnecessary attempts to change their frequency or form, especially when doing so would cause psychological harm. For example, anxiety patients are taught to feel anxiety, as a feeling, fully and without defense; pain patients are given methods that encourage them to let go of a struggle with pain, and so on. Acceptance (and defusion) in ACT is not an end in itself. Rather acceptance is fostered as a method of increasing values-based action.

Cognitive Fusion

Cognitive defusion techniques attempt to alter the undesirable functions of thoughts and other private events, rather than trying to alter their form, frequency or situational sensitivity. Said another way, ACT attempts to change the way one interacts with or relates to thoughts by creating contexts in which their unhelpful functions are diminished. There are scores of such techniques that have been developed for a wide variety of clinical presentations. For example, a negative thought could be watched dispassionately, repeated out loud until only its sound remains, or treated as an externally observed event by giving it a shape, size, color, speed, or form. A person could thank their mind for such an interesting thought, label the process of thinking (“I am having the thought that I am no good”), or examine the historical thoughts, feelings, and memories that occur while they experience that thought. Such procedures attempt to reduce the literal quality of the thought, weakening the tendency to treat the thought as what it refers to (“I am no good”) rather than what it is directly experienced to be (e.g., the thought “I am no good”). The result of defusion is usually a decrease in believability of, or attachment to, private events rather than an immediate change in their frequency.

Being Present

ACT promotes ongoing non-judgmental contact with psychological and environmental events as they occur. The goal is to have clients experience the world more directly so that their behavior is more flexible and thus their actions more consistent with the values that they hold. This is accomplished by allowing workability to exert more control over behavior; and by using language more as a tool to note and describe events, not simply to predict and judge them. A sense of self called “self as process” is actively encouraged: the defused, non-judgmental ongoing description of thoughts, feelings, and other private events.

Self as Context

As a result of relational frames such as I versus You, Now versus Then, and Here versus There, human language leads to a sense of self as a locus or perspective, and provides a transcendent, spiritual side to normal verbal humans. This idea was one of the seeds from which both ACT and RFT grew and there is now growing evidence of its importance to language functions such as empathy, theory of mind, sense of self, and the like. In brief the idea is that “I” emerges over large sets of exemplars of perspective-taking relations (what are termed in RFT “deictic relations”), but since this sense of self is a context for verbal knowing, not the content of that knowing, it’s limits cannot be consciously known. Self as context is important in part because from this standpoint, one can be aware of one’s own flow of experiences without attachment to them or an investment in which particular experiences occur: thus defusion and acceptance is fostered. Self as context is fostered in ACT by mindfulness exercises, metaphors, and experiential processes.


Values are chosen qualities of purposive action that can never be obtained as an object but can be instantiated moment by moment. ACT uses a variety of exercises to help a client choose life directions in various domains (e.g. family, career, spirituality) while undermining verbal processes that might lead to choices based on avoidance, social compliance, or fusion (e.g. “I should value X” or “A good person would value Y” or “My mother wants me to value Z”). In ACT, acceptance, defusion, being present, and so on are not ends in themselves; rather they clear the path for a more vital, values consistent life.

Committed Action

Finally, ACT encourages the development of larger and larger patterns of effective action linked to chosen values. In this regard, ACT looks very much like traditional behavior therapy, and almost any behaviorally coherent behavior change method can be fitted into an ACT protocol, including exposure, skills acquisition, shaping methods, goal setting, and the like. Unlike values, which are constantly instantiated but never achieved as an object, concrete goals that are values consistent can be achieved and ACT protocols almost always involve therapy work and homework linked to short, medium, and long-term behavior change goals. Behavior change efforts in turn lead to contact with psychological barriers that are addressed through other ACT processes (acceptance, defusion, and so on).
Taken as a whole, each of these processes supports the other and all target psychological flexibility: the process of contacting the present moment fully as a conscious human being and persisting or changing behavior in the service of chosen values. The six processes can be chunked into two groupings. Mindfulness and acceptance processes involve acceptance, defusion, contact with the present moment, and self as context. Indeed, these four processes provide a workable behavioral definition of mindfulness (see the Fletcher & Hayes, in press in the publications section). Commitment and behavior change processes involve contact with the present moment, self as context, values, and committed action. Contact with the present moment and self as context occur in both groupings because all psychological activity of conscious human beings involves the now as known.

A Definition of ACT

ACT is an approach to psychological intervention defined in terms of certain theoretical processes, not a specific technology. In theoretical and process terms we can define ACT as a psychological intervention based on modern behavioral psychology, including Relational Frame Theory, that applies mindfulness and acceptance processes, and commitment and behavior change processes, to the creation of psychological flexibility."

Saturday, August 8, 2015

ACT Mindfully

Home > Free Resources > Free Resources Worksheets, Handouts And Book Chapters 


Free Resources for The Happiness Trap
Book Chapters and Supplements

Tuesday, June 30, 2015

DBT Related Apps

About DBT Self-Help App (itunes or android)
"DBT Self-help is a tool that helps you manage overwhelming emotions, break destructive impulsive behaviors, navigate relationships and cultivate mindfulness. It contains skill descriptions complete with rationale and practice tips that will enable you to develop and practice the needed skills. The skills are based upon the principles and skills taught in Dialectical Behavioral Therapy skill classes. The app can be used in conjunction with psychotherapy or as a standalone self-help intervention as the skills can be implemented into many situations and settings."

https://itunes.apple.com/se/app/dbt-self-help/id458300012?mt=8 itunes
https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=se.cognitus.dbtapp&hl=en google play $1.75

This app has a lot of text explanations of all the skills with practice suggestions.  You can also write your own notes on the skill pages. (You can't email from this app).

DBT Self-Help
Full practice app IP, IPT, IPP, AD

DBT 911 
https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=se.annadroid.Dbt112&hl=en android
"Do you need access to a skill quickly? With this app you will quickly get a random distress tolerance skill to do. In addition, for each module, Mindfulness, Emotional Control, Manage relationships and Distress tolerance, are the skills represented and tutorials for these. Contains over 150 different suggestions on skill exercises. There is also the opportunity to create your own crisis list so you will always have it with you. An optional module for validation has been added as desired by participants. The application is designed in collaboration with the participants in DBT treatment."

DBT 911 
Full practice app AD


    "All the sections of your diary card are rolled into one page here. You can fill out your Skills, Targets and Notes all here. You can also view skill and targets descriptions here."

    DBT Diary Card and Skills Coach

    https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/id479013889?mt=8 $4.99 IP, IPP

    You can keep a daily record of skills you've used and your emotion levels, with notes of what happened during the day/week. There is a coaching section that will take you through skills when you are struggling, including a 911 section for a crisis time.  It has a reference section explaining all the skills briefly. (You can't email from this app).

    A Simple & Free DBT Skills Diary Card App 

    This initially free app is graphic intensive and sometimes hard to read.  It allows you to do a daily list of which skills you have practiced, but you can't email it.  You can upgrade for $3.99 and then you can email your progress to your therapist.

    "Manage your emotions and improve your relationships with DBT Review, a personal-use DBT tool. This app was designed as a learning adjunct for people learning DBT or working with a DBT therapist. The four categories of skills are covered. The app is based on Marsha Linehan's "Cognitive-Behavioral Treatment for Borderline Personality Disorder" (1993). This app is not recommended for anyone unfamiliar with DBT skills and is not a substitute for therapy." $.099

    This app is pretty much a reference list of all the skills.

    DBT Diary
    This app allows you to record incidents in diary entries and then email them to your therapist. $4.99 itunes for iphone

    Device KeyIP = iPhone, IPT = iPod Touch, IPP = iPad, AD = Android, BB = Blackberry

    Thursday, May 14, 2015

    Acceptance and Commitment Therapy, and Forgiveness

    Amazing Grace: How Unconditional Forgiveness Assists Recovery


    In the above referenced article, the author, Rita Millios, discusses the health and recovery benefits of forgiveness and offers a forgiveness exercise.

    She also mentions Acceptance and Commitment Therapy ACT, described below.

    Rita Millios is also author of "Tools for Transformation."

    Acceptance and Comitment Therapy on wikipedia

    "Acceptance and commitment therapy (ACT, typically pronounced as the word "act") is a form of clinical behavior analysis (CBA)[1] used in psychotherapy. It is an empirically-based psychological intervention that uses acceptance and mindfulness strategies mixed in different ways[2] with commitment and behavior-change strategies, to increase psychological flexibility. The approach was originally called comprehensive distancing.[3] It was developed in the late 1980s[4] by Steven C. Hayes, Kelly G. Wilson, and Kirk Strosahl.[5]

    The objective is not happiness; rather, it is to be present with what life brings us and to "move toward valued behavior".[6] Noam Shpancer describes acceptance and commitment therapy as getting to know unpleasant feelings, then learning not to act upon them, and to not avoid situations where they are invoked. Its therapeutic effect is according to him a positive spiral where feeling better leads to a better understanding of the truth.[7]"
    1. Jennifer C Plumb, Ian Stewart, Galway JoAnne Dahl, Tobias Lundgren (Spring 2009). "In Search of Meaning: Values in Modern Clinical Behavior Analysis" . Behav Anal. 32 (1): 85–103. PMC 2686995 . PMID 22478515 .
    2. Hayes, Steven. "Acceptance & Commitment Therapy (ACT)" . ContextualPsychology.org.
    3. Zettle, Robert D. (2005). "The Evolution of a Contextual Approach to Therapy: From Comprehensive Distancing to ACT" . International Journal of Behavioral Consultation and Therapy 1 (2): 77–89.
    4. Murdock, N. L. (2009). Theories of counseling and psychotherapy: A case approach. Upper Saddle River, N.J: Merrill/Pearson
    5. "Getting in on the Act - The Irish Times - Tue, Jun 07, 2011" . The Irish Times. 2011-06-07. Retrieved 2012-03-16.
    6. Hayes, Steven C., Strosahl, Kirk D., and Wilson, Kelly G. (2012). Acceptance and Commitment Therapy: The Process and Practice of Mindful Change (2 ed.). New York: Guilford Press. p. 240. ISBN 978-1-60918-962-4.
    7. Shpancer, Noam (September 8, 2010). "Emotional Acceptance: Why Feeling Bad is Good" . Psychology Today.

    Acceptance and Commitment Therapy

    Acceptance and Commitment Therapy, Second Edition: The Process and Practice of Mindful ChangeGet Out of Your Mind and Into Your Life: The New Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (A New Harbinger Self-Help Workbook)ACT Made Simple: An Easy-To-Read Primer on Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (The New Harbinger Made Simple Series)
    Acceptance and Commitment Therapy, Second E...
    by Steven C. Hayes
    Get Out of Your Mind and Into Your Life: Th...
    by Steven C. Hayes
    ACT Made Simple: An Easy-To-Read Primer on ...
    by Russ Harris
    The Mindfulness and Acceptance Workbook for Anxiety: A Guide to Breaking Free from Anxiety, Phobias, and Worry Using Acceptance and Commitment TherapyThe Mindfulness and Acceptance Workbook for Depression: Using Acceptance and Commitment Therapy to Move Through Depression and Create a Life Worth Living (New Harbinger Self-Help Workbook)The Worry Trap: How to Free Yourself from Worry & Anxiety using Acceptance and Commitment Therapy
    The Mindfulness and Acceptance Workbook for...
    by John P. Forsyth
    The Mindfulness and Acceptance Workbook for...
    by Patricia J. Robinson
    The Worry Trap: How to Free Yourself from W...
    by Chad LeJeune PhD
    True Happiness: Your Complete Guide to Emotional HealthThe Happiness Trap: How to Stop Struggling and Start Living: A Guide to ACT
    Tools for Transformation
    by Rita Milios
    True Happiness: Your Complete Guide to Emot...
    by Dr. Mark Atkinson
    The Happiness Trap: How to Stop Struggling ...
    by Russ Harris
    ACT (Acceptance and Commitment Therapy)