Skip to main content
Digital Recording

ACT with Anxiety: Help Clients Get Unstuck from Anxiety and Enrich Their Lives

Average Rating:
Not yet rated
Richard Sears, PsyD, PhD, MBA, ABPP
6 Hours 18 Minutes
Audio and Video
Mar 24, 2022
Product Code:
Media Type:
Digital Recording
Never expires.


As a therapist, it’s likely you treat stress and anxiety successfully with techniques like relaxation almost every day. But have you noticed that some clients seem to just get worse, despite your best efforts? That the more you work to reduce the stress or the anxiety, the worse it gets?

Teaching relaxation, coping or distress tolerance skills may be fine for surviving a crisis, but in the long run, they often subtly reinforce avoidance of thoughts and feelings. Even talking about anxiety week after week in therapy can become a form of avoidance! Worse still, the struggle with anxiety can become ingrained in clients’ sense of identity, and their lives become very restricted and without purpose or meaning.

Watch ACT expert and author Dr. Richard Sears as he brings the principles of ACT to life with his wisdom, humour, and passion. He’ll help you transform your clients’ relationship with their anxieties to help them build a life worth living. You’ll learn how to skillfully use:

  • Acceptance and mindfulness processes to help clients relate differently to anxious thoughts and feelings
  • Commitment and behavioural change processes to help them flexibly move in the direction of a more meaningful life

From explaining the ins and outs of ACT with anxiety using everyday metaphors and samples, Dr. Sears’ provides dozens of techniques that can transform your clients’ suffering in the very first session!

And as an added bonus, you’ll receive an EXCLUSIVE 25% OFF discount on Dr. Sears’ ACT with Anxiety and Cognitive Behavioral Therapy & Mindfulness Toolbox books— when you purchase either or both with registration!



This online program is worth 6.5 hours CPD.



Richard Sears, PsyD, PhD, MBA, ABPP's Profile

Richard Sears, PsyD, PhD, MBA, ABPP Related seminars and products

Richard W. Sears, PsyD, PhD, MBA, ABPP, is a board-certified clinical psychologist in Cincinnati, Ohio, where he is in private practice for both therapy and consultation. Dr. Sears has served as a clinical supervisor for 15 years in addition to teaching doctoral level supervision and consultation courses. He holds several academic appointments, including the Department of Clinical Psychiatry & Behavioral Neurosciences with the UC College of Medicine. Dr. Sears is also a psychologist contractor with the Cincinnati VA Medical Center and with Alliance Integrative Medicine.

A sought-after professional speaker, Dr. Sears has provided hundreds of seminars on Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT) and mindfulness around the world, and is the author of over a dozen books, including the forthcoming ACT with Anxiety (2020), The CBT & Mindfulness Toolbox (2017), Mindfulness: Living through Challenges and Enriching Your Life in this Moment (2014) and Consultation Skills for Mental Health Professionals (2006). He is also a fifth-degree black belt in Ninjutsu, once serving as a personal protection agent for the Dalai Lama of Tibet. He has a PhD in Buddhist Studies, and received ordination in three traditions, as well as recognition as a Zen master, experiences that have greatly enriched his understanding of and passion for teaching the principles of mindfulness and ACT.


Speaker Disclosures:

Financial: Dr. Richard Sears maintains a private practice and has an employment relationship with the University of Cincinnati, Alliance Integrative Medicine, and Wright State University School of Professional Psychology. Dr. Sears receives royalties as a published author. He receives a speaking honorarium, recording royalties, and book royalties from PESI, Inc. He has no relevant financial relationships with ineligible organizations.

Non-financial: Dr. Richard Sears is the director of the Center for Clinical Mindfulness and Meditation. He has professional affiliations with the American Board of Professional Psychology, the Academy of the American Board of Clinical Psychology, the Association for Contextual Behavioral Sciences, and the Cincinnati Academy of Professional Psychology.


  1. Determine the idiographic factors that maintain vicious cycles of anxious thoughts, feelings, and behaviours for each individual client.
  2. Investigate what really matters to clients to enhance motivation and willingness to engage in the work of therapy.
  3. Utilize metaphors to foster a more flexible sense of self in the service of creating a life worth living.
  4. Apply new research on metacognition, defusion, and acceptance to change your client’s relationship to anxious thoughts and feelings.
  5. Employ mindfulness exercises to undermine automatic reactions that maintain the anxiety response.
  6. Formulate individualized behavioural activation plans to help clients take measurable steps toward a more fulfilling life.


The Anxiety Trap and How to ACT
  • From natural stress response to chronic reactivity
  • How anxiety about anxiety leads to a restricted life
  • Conceptualizing GAD, panic, OCD, health anxiety, and PTSD from an ACT frame
  • Toward process-focused treatment versus techniques
Help Clients Set Their Life’s Course
Don’t Let Anxiety “Drive the Bus”
  • Use “the voice” of anxiety to discern values
  • Define a life worth living alongside anxiety
  • Design exposures to coincide with values
  • Exercise: Bus metaphor
Anxiety as Control Attempt:
Let Go of What Is Not Working
  • Myths and truths of thought suppression
  • Dig deeper into the control pit
  • Increase psychological flexibility in the face of anxiety
  • Metaphor Exercise: Creative helplessness to get rid of anxiety
Clients Are Not Their Anxiety:
How to Expand the Sense of Self
  • Explain over-identification with anxiety
  • Shift from self-as-content to self-as-context with the anxious client
  • Metaphor Exercise: Expand the sense of self to put anxiety in context
Break Free from The Battle with Anxious Thinking
  • How internal representations develop in the human mind
  • How thoughts are conditioned with meaning and emotion
  • Reification of thoughts – why arguing with thoughts can make them worse
  • Brain programming – why clients cannot control or suppress thoughts long-term
  • Defusion – break the pattern of anxious spirals
  • Metaphor Exercise: Shift from being lost in the drama to aware of thoughts as they are
Break Free from the Battle with Anxious Feelings
  • The nature, purpose, and psychophysiology of anxious feelings
  • Diving into feelings to uncouple them from thoughts and misinterpretations
  • Metaphor exercise for exposure therapy
  • Metaphor exercise for self-compassion
  • Metaphor exercise for shifting old feelings through memory reconsolidation
Just this Moment:
Break free from Future Worries and Past Regrets
  • Why our brains get lost in the past and the future
  • Help clients start from where they are
  • Eternity in this moment – the illusion of time
  • Mindfulness – experiencing reality through the senses versus mental representation
  • Explore anxiety with curiosity – math problem versus sunset
  • Exercise: Three minute mindfulness
Just Do It:
Take Committed Action
  • How to build momentum toward what really matters
  • Develop a realistic and workable action plan
  • Teach clients to act with anxiety
  • Why we cannot “try” - making the leap

Target Audience

  • Social Workers
  • Counselors
  • Psychologists
  • Physicians
  • Marriage and Family Therapists
  • Addiction Counselors
  • Psychotherapists
  • Case Managers
  • Nurses
  • Physicians
  • Mental Health Professionals
  • Therapists


Satisfaction Guarantee
Your satisfaction is our goal and our guarantee. Concerns should be addressed to or call 01235847393.

Please wait ...

Back to Top