online course in acceptance and commitment therapy interventions
Improve the way you do Creative Hopelessness
How often have you heard a client say, “I want to be less anxious?” What goes through your mind when you hear, “I just want to be happy?” What do you do when a client doesn’t know what they want?
It can be tricky engaging a client in meaningful behaviour change. Rather than focusing on the life they want to lead, they struggle with avoiding or controlling thoughts and feelings. Unfortunately, this strategy often fails, which is why they come to see you.
A New Approach to Life
Acceptance and Commitment Therapy invites you to explore the workability of experiential avoidance. By using Creative Hopelessness interventions, you can help a client take a pragmatic approach to life and their problems. You connect them with why excessive control hasn’t worked and invite them to take a different approach.
In reality, engaging clients in behaviour change is far from easy. Even though you address the costs of staying the same early on, they continue trying to fix or problem-solve unwanted emotions. It’s the human way!
Over and over again, you hear clients say things like, “I just want it to stop”, and you can feel stuck, frustrated and ineffectual as you revisit concepts you’ve already discussed.
ACT therapists often fall into the trap of explaining why it’s good to accept experiences and why it is wrong to avoid them. You remind them of your discussion and try to help them understand it better.
Despite your attempts, you can get stuck. The client continues to avoid stuff, and you run out of ideas. Until now!
Module One: What is Creative Hopelessness? Over five lessons, we describe the concept, explore common therapist mistakes and identify a clear structure.
Module Two: Why is Creative Hopelessness helpful? We discuss why psychological flexibility builds on workability and explore how you’ve benefitted personally from adapting your habits.
Module Three: How do you Spot Experiential Avoidance? Over six lessons, we discuss what avoidance looks like outside and inside therapy sessions and consider how you might unintentionally reinforce experiential avoidance.
Module Four: How do you Do Creative Hopelessness? In this module, you’ll learn a four-step process for implementing creative hopelessness effectively.
Module Five: Creative Hopelessness in Action. In the final module, you’ll observe and analyse a therapy interaction and consider how to respond to common examples like homework avoidance, client dominance or the lack of a clear direction.
Creative Hopelessness Interventions work when they are transparent and structured
Although behaviour change is hard, nudging clients towards a more valued life is possible without getting stuck or frustrated. With a clear structure that stays close to behavioural principles, you can help a client no matter their resistance level.
Creative Hopelessness is often necessary throughout therapy, not just at the beginning. Clients may avoid homework or suffer a setback, which can lead to a relapse. When you recognise that creative hopelessness work is frequently necessary, you can let go of needing people to change.
Ultimately, people’s habits are natural, given their learning histories. Withdrawal, reassurance-seeking, self-criticism and many other unhelpful patterns are rooted in old ways of coping. They are hard to resist, but you can train your clients to be better observers, assessors and choosers of which road to take.
In this online course, I want to show you a transparent process and structure for implementing creative hopelessness interventions so you can engage a client in behaviour change at whatever stage of therapy.
I’m Jim Lucas, and I have been practising Acceptance and Commitment Therapy since 2009. Although I started as a Person-Centred Addictions Counsellor and went on to complete a Post Graduate Diploma in Cognitive Behaviour Therapy, I adopted ACT as my primary model not long after reading about it in a journal.
I love how ACT combines the humanistic therapeutic stance and solid behavioural methods to support clients’ mental health and well-being. Since becoming an ACBS Peer-Reviewed ACT Trainer, I’ve taught 1000s of counsellors, psychological therapists and psychologists how to integrate ACT into their clinical work.
While many practitioners love ACT’s experiential methods, people can quickly get stuck. Like any model, it takes time to learn ACT’s depth and nuance to deliver it with precision. In my training, I focus on ACT’s head, heart and hands to give you a clear theoretical understanding, teach practical ways of intervening and model the therapeutic stance required to be a powerful ACT practitioner.
Doing Creative Hopelessness effectively requires compassion and boldness. It’s one of my favourite procedures because it’s the bedrock of psychological flexibility. Without it, your clients are unlikely to progress; as the term suggests, it is often one of the most creative elements of therapy. I’m grateful to have learned from excellent teachers like Robyn Walser and Kelly Wilson, who have shown me how to sit inside the ACT model with warmth, humility and courage. I will be forever appreciative of their education and wisdom.
Are you ready?
Power Up Your Creative HopelessnessInterventions
Just £60 for access to this online course. No time-limits. Certificate sent upon completion.