“Just be yourself!” Try telling that to a teen with autism! Much of the time when they’re just “being themselves” it’s all wrong and they’re always been told that they way they pass papers in class, answer when called on, eat lunch, make a joke, it’s “inappropriate” or “argumentative” or just plain “weird.”
Psychological flexibility represents the acceptance and commitment therapy (ACT) model of health—it's the element we want to foster and grow in our clients while modelling it ourselves as mental health professionals.
Clients often come to therapy with significant difficulties that take significant dedication and effort to overcome. Yet they are often accustomed to standard medical care, in which the clinician does almost all the work and produces remarkable results with a minimal patient role (e.g., splinting an agonizing broken wrist; or prescribing antibiotics for a raging case of strep throat).
No one wants to be known as a “guilt tripper.” And yet, we all engage in using guilt to motivate others to do what we want them to do. A guilt trip is when you use guilt as a form of emotional manipulation to get someone to think or act a certain way. It’s something that we’ve all done at times and we’ve likely all been on the receiving end of a guilt trip.