How Acceptance and Commitment (AC) Coaching differs from ACT

Posted by in Coaching Training, Maximize Your Coaching Effectiveness CEU | 2 comments

Maximize Your Coaching Effectiveness

In this post I’ll talk about how Acceptance and Commitment (AC) coaching differs from ACT.  Acceptance and Commitment ( AC) Coaching and Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT) are similar but different

Acceptance and Commitment Coaching takes the principles and practices of Acceptance and Commitment Therapy  and adapts them to fit the needs of coaches working in a variety of settings.

The word therapy may have already sent up a red flag in your mind, but fear not, you can use the principles and practices drawn from ACT to help your coaching clients and not cross the coach/therapist line.

There’s a big difference between coaching and providing therapy. As long as you are clear about your coaching intentions and understand the limitations of your training and credentials, you can use practices drawn from a wide range of modalities to help your clients. Specifically, without being a therapist, you can use practices derived from ACT as long as you stick to working as a coach with clients who do not need psychotherapy.



Coaching theory and practice revolve around helping clients  achieve their goals and live purposeful lives, driven by their values. Coaching theory assumes that clients are whole, functioning people who are looking to improve their lives. As coaches, you  assume that your clients know what’s best for themselves and are able to plan for the future and solve their own problems. If your coaching clients are like mine, they often seek help because they are stuck in a rut and are not making progress at achieving their goals.



Your clients are not dysfunctional, nor do they have diagnosed mental disorders. The are however anxious, worried, and stressed, in addition to being stuck. Every day, they struggle with unhelpful thoughts, painful emotions, scary mental images, and negative self-talk and personal scripts that contribute to their becoming psychologically inflexible, stuck in a rut, and unable to meet their goals.



AC Coaching theory and practice can be used to help your coaching  clients develop greater psychological flexibility, get unstuck, and achieve their values-based goals.

According to AC Coaching theory, clients become psychologically inflexible and get stuck due to six key factors. The six key factors  are:

  • Attachment to the conceptualized self
  • Cognitive fusion
  • Dominance of outmoded scripts and learning
  • Experiential avoidance
  • Lack of clarity concerning values
  • Inaction, impulsivity, and rigidity

In future posts I’ll explain how these factors work to get and keep clients stuck.

In the meantime I’d like to give you more information about AC Coaching.


Get a Free Training Session

A few years ago I wrote a book, Maximize Your Coaching Effectiveness with Acceptance and Commitment Therapy. It has become the go-to-resource for coaches who want to apply AC Coaching and ACT to their coaching practice. 

I recently developed a 10 CEU-Approved Training course of the same name.

Get a Free Training Session

I’d really like you to see what the course is all about so I am offering you the first session of my CEU-approved Coach Training Course,  Maximize Your Coaching Effectiveness with Acceptance and Commitment Therapy for free ( a $50.00 value).

Click Here for Your Free Training Session



  1. Great approach!

    • Thanks Ignacio,

      Glad you like it.

      Dr Rich



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