ACT is fundamentally about behaviour change guided by moving mindfully in a valued direction in a flexible way, making room for feelings, thoughts and challenges from life and accepting it won’t be easy or simple. Commited action is therefore absolutely key to using ACT.
Commited action is what you choose it to be once you know where you want to go next.
Goal setting tips
SMART goals – pick goals that are specific, measurable, achievable, realistic and time bound. In a toilet training example –
Specific – you want your toddler to use the potty to have a wee for the first time
Measurable – when they manage that first wee, you can say you’ve measured progress
Achievable – before you set this goal you want to be sure that they show signs of knowing they need a wee and have some familiarity and positive associations with the potty. You also want to be sure you’ll have the time and patience at home to calmly deal with the probably inevitable accidents on the way to success.
Realistic – You might want to hold in mind it could take a few days, weeks or months depending on your toddler’s readiness. You might also want to accept it will be messy, and if you have a cream carpet in your living room like me and a toddler who likes the potty in the living room, investing in a carpet cleaning machine may be wise. You might also want to consider your current stress level and work commitments, holiday plans and any other children (planned or currently living) – is now the right time?)
Time bound – when are you going to try it – today? Next week? When you can take time off work? Before rather than after your holiday or when that new baby is due? Pick a specific date to start, try it and evaluate how it goes. If it doesn’t go well, try to acknowledge and make room for your own feelings and theirs. If you can both keep going you will get there.