A Comparison of ACT Values Procedures to Increase Valued Behaviors
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In Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT), therapists use various procedures to identify and clarify clients’ personal values with the aim of increasing engagement in valued behaviors. This study sought to determine the relative effectiveness of two common values procedures. Participants were recruited from a national online sample of Amazon Mechanical Turk workers. Participants that met inclusion criteria and provided complete and valid data were included in analyses (N = 236). In this study, a values intervention (Values-Alone; VA) and a values intervention with an added behavior-consistency assessment procedure (VBC condition) were compared with an active control condition. Both values procedures involved writing about a topic of concern and responding to an assessment of discrete valued actions, such as, “It is important to take care of people who are less fortunate.” However, the VBC condition contained an additional task of rating consistency between recent behaviors and personal values. The control condition consisted of writing tasks and assessment of attitudes on the topic of time management practices. Participants were later presented with an opportunity to donate a portion of their earnings. Cragg Hurdle Regression Analyses indicated that both the VBC and VA conditions effectively increased the likelihood of donation to charity compared to the active control condition (b = .56, p = .01; and b = .58, p = .008, respectively). However, the VBC and VA conditions did not differ in their relative influence on whether or not individuals donated (b = -.02, p = .91). A discussion of study findings in addition to future directions for research will be presented.