Freddy Jackson Brown, Nic Hooper

The Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT) Diary 2021

Spiral Bound

A guide and companion for moving toward the things that matter in your life



The Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT) Diary 2021

If you sometimes feel that you’re living a life that’s out of step with who you want to be, The ACT Diary 2021 can help. It’s designed to enable you to clarify your personal values (the qualities you’d most like to embody in your life) and move in meaningful directions. Through weekly exercises drawing on the latest psychological approaches, it will guide you as you master the skills needed to look after yourself, build strong relationships and pursue new opportunities.

Based on Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT), it puts values centre-stage where they can best guide actions and decisions. It is especially helpful for those engaged in ACT; however, the principles are relevant to anyone seeking to build psychological flexibility – the ability to connect fully with experiences, including difficult thoughts and feelings, and pursue an authentic life.

It’s your wellbeing companion for the year ahead.





Publisher: Pavilion Publishing and Media Ltd

ISBN: 9781913414207

Publication date: October 2020



Nic Hooper is Lecturer in Psychology at the University of the West of England (UWE). He previously spent two years teaching at Middle East Technical University in Northern Cyprus. He has written a number of articles and book chapters, and is lead author of The Research Journey of Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (2015). From 2015-17 he sat on the board of the 8,000-member Association for Contextual Behavioral Science (ACBS), which governs much work in ACT and related areas.

Freddy Jackson Brown is a registered and chartered clinical psychologist with twenty years’ experience working with children and families in the NHS. He has published a range of peer-reviewed articles and book chapters on ACT, behaviour analysis, disability and sexuality, and is the author of Get the Life You Want (2013) and ACT for Dummies (2016).


Authors’ Welcome
What Do You Want?
An Introduction to Values
Valued Domains
Smart Goals
Values List
Exploring Domains
Managing Thoughts and Feelings
What Is Willingness?
Metaphor: The Unwelcome Guest
What Is Defusion?
Exercise: Having the Thought
What is Contacting the Present Moment?
Exercise: Breathing
What is Self-as-Context?
Metaphor: The Sky and the Weather
What is the Hexaflex?
Exercise: Writing a Eulogy
Introducing Self-Compassion
Exercise: Helping a Child
Personal Values Statement
Introducing Experiential Avoidance
Exercise: The White Bear
Experiential Avoidance: A Crucial Side Effect
Metaphor: A Ball in the Water
Giving You the Reins
Metaphor: Quicksand
Metaphor: Tug of War with a Monster
Exercise: Leaves on a Stream
Metaphor: Hands as Thoughts
Exercise: Body Scan
Exercise: Walking
Exercise: Fusion with Evaluations
Exercise: Taking Off Your Armour
Exercise: Heroes
Exercise: Waiting for the Wrong Train
Bringing It All Together: Passengers on the Bus
Ending the Year

8 reviews for The Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT) Diary 2021


    Highly recommended – Buy this diary!
    I use and practice acceptance and mindfulness in my daily life and this diary gives loads of practical ideas and inspiration to help me each day. I’ve had this diary in previous years and found it so useful. I’d highly recommend this!

  2. R McIntosh

    An invaluable companion to a hectic year.

    I find that the older I get – the quicker time flies! This diary is carefully designed and constructed around an evidence based science of human behaviour. I know it will help me keep track of how I’m ‘showing up’ in EVERY area of my life, even when life feels really hectic. The resources and reflection points during the year will also help me notice how my thoughts and feelings might be getting in the way of me moving towards what’s important and meaningful for me.

  3. N Trenchard

    In some respects this was a hard review to write as I am typically someone who doesn’t read the blurb on the back of a book, only the first paragraph, then if that grabs me I’ll buy the book!

    With the ACT Diary 2020, I kind of knew what to expect because I have used the 2019 one up until now. What I didn’t expect was the neat change to the look and feel of the diary. I like the ring-binding as it makes the pages much more usable and given the huge amount of exercises to do and the space to write, it will be really comfortable to use each day.

    Values within key areas are identified early on and woven throughout the diary to help you focus on your goals for the week. Key questions aid reflections and further planning. Motivational quotes are dotted throughout but are choicely connected with the aim of this diary – to help you move towards the things that matter to you most. So in the words of Mary Shelley ‘ The Beginning is always today’, I would without hesitation recommend that you grab a moment today and get yourself a copy – you won’t regret it, this diary can only enhance your ability to enrich your life in 2020.

  4. Fiona Healy O’Neill

    A must buy for supporting meaningful change in your life!

    This is my third year to receive a copy of the ACT Diary and I was so excited to see it land through the letterbox!

    Everyone has times in life when things get tricky – those months or even years when it all feels like wading through treacle, no matter what you do. I’ve had one of those times this year in particular, and having the ACT Diary has been a reminder to keep the feet moving towards the things that matter. This really has made some very challenging times an awful lot easier to manage. How often can someone say that about something as simple and universal as a weekly diary?

    When I got the new, expanded version of this diary this year I immediately appreciated the work that has gone into making this even better than the versions I have found so useful over the last two years. I was excited to see so much more practical, useful, welcoming content on values and action. Even glancing through and briefly reviewing some of the self-assessment tools, I was instantly inspired with ideas of what I could be doing differently even now to help my life move in the direction I want. It’s not often that can be said about a resource such as this! It’s truly value for money.

    As well as knowing how it benefits me personally, I’ve recently started a new professional role – and I can already see how the exercises and assessments will be supportive in keeping me on track in my own work with vulnerable young people. The tools and tactics included are so clearly explained and laid out, I feel sure this would be true for anyone no matter what their work or role in life. There’s really something here that everyone can use to shape and move their life in directions of meaning and purpose, and it would be such a wonderful gift that could make a true difference to the person receiving it. Honestly cannot endorse it enough, and very genuinely. Get your hands on a copy now, and do what it says to do, and I am absolutely sure your future self will thank you for the investment.

  5. Dr Elaine Kasket, HCPC-Registered Counselling Psychologist

    Third year using this diary! And it’s improved this year.

    I became aware of this values-tracker diary in 2017 and have been using it ever since. What really matters to you can get easily obscured by the constant activity, distraction, and expectations in which we’re constantly immersed. For anyone who’s read Johann Hari’s Lost Connections, or who’s done certain types of psychotherapy, you may be aware that disconnection from values can contribute significantly to feelings of depression and anxiety. This diary is specifically designed to strengthen awareness and connection with one’s own values, enabling users to live a richer life by aligning their activities and life choices with the stuff that really matters to them.

    I keep the 2019 diary on my bedside table and do weekly planning, daily tracking, and weekly roundup of my values and values-aligned actions. I reckon that, along with exercise, it’s one of the most important things that I do to look after my well being and mental health. As a psychotherapist and coach who works a lot with values in the consulting room, I also often recommend the diary as a resource for clients – I’m thinking of buying the 2020 diary in bulk to help many of my clients start off the new year.

    The diary has always had various values-clarification and committed-action exercises scattered throughout it, but in 2020 the structure of the diary has changed. It takes you on an unfolding journey, a stepwise progression to learning more about values, gradually building your mindful awareness of what you’re choosing to do in life and why you’re choosing it. There is more variety week on week, with specific tasks to undertake – this helps build skills and awareness in multiple ways and is less repetitive than the previous versions. Because it starts from basic foundational building blocks, the 2020 diary may seem particularly suitable for people who haven’t done this kind of values-tracking before or who aren’t familiar with the concepts, but as someone who’s done this a lot, I don’t at all mind stripping things back to first principles at the start of the year and tackling things anew. I’m looking forward to trying this new format.

    All in all, a great resource with a thoughtful redesign for 2020, and one I’d heartily recommend on a personal and professional level.

  6. Louise McHugh

    A must get purchase for any ACT interested folks.
    The diary is a great way to keep your values as a guide for what you do day to day. Excellent tips and exercises throughout keep the reader on their toes throughout the year. What is particularly nice is that we can all set off a new year with good intentions but the diary can orient you back to those intentions all year long. The diary is a must for anyone with an interest in acceptance and commitment therapy (ACT) personally or professionally.

  7. Richard Bennett

    Great way to structure the use of ACT in your daily life.
    This diary has gone through different iterations over the last few years, and the formula is getting better and better. Really useful for those wanting to bring ACT practices to daily life.

  8. Anonymous

    Excellent companion to get out of a rut.

    Very clear and well laid out diary that will help me make the most of 2020. Clear exercises to clarify the things that give purpose and meaning to life, and set goals. January 1st can’t come quick enough!

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