Portland skyline from the water


Thursday, Feb 5, 2015 from 8:30 AM to 4:00 PM EDT
Friday, Feb 6, 2015 from 8:30 AM to 4:00 PM EDT


Woodfords Club
179 Woodford Street
Portland, ME 04103


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Joel Guarna 

Teresa Valliere

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Experiencing ACT:
A Two-day Hands-on Workshop

Happy New Year!
During this season of giving, give yourself the gift of personal and professional rejuvenation. Your clients, friends, and family will thank you!  Please join us and numerous other like-minded friends and colleagues for two days of experiential training in Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT).  As the ACT model makes clear: We are all in the same boat. The lessons you take from this workshop will apply as much to you as to your clients. Shake off that end of the year burnout and start 2015 with a renewed sense of purpose and with fresh approaches to helping others.

About ACT
Acceptance & Commitment Therapy (ACT) is a contemporary form of Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy (CBT) that has shown much promise in helping clients with a wide range of emotional and behavioral difficulties. ACT introduces a comprehensive model of change including a creative set of metaphors and experiential exercises to help clients (a) move away from unworkable change strategies, (b) make healthy contact with thoughts, feelings, and other private reactions they have feared and avoided, (c) re-connect with their deepest values to set a direction for change and to motivate change, and (d) experience their struggles differently and in a manner that permits them to move forward with their lives now. 

This Workshop
Using a combination of didactic presentation and experiential exercises, this workshop will delve into the ACT model and its application with a wide range of clinical concerns. A variety of ACT strategies, exercises, and metaphors will be demonstrated and practiced and later unpacked in our discussion. You will leave this training with a better understanding of ACT approaches to therapy, use of the Matrix and other exercises as clinical tools, and with specific skills you can employ immediately.  

This workshop will be highly experiential. We plan to use a variety of exercises to give you a true taste of using ACT for yourself and with others. These exercises will encourage you to encounter the six ACT core processes directly with personal challenges you experience as a person and a helper (therapist, healthcare worker, etc.) and to role-play the types of challenges your clients or patients bring to you for help. You will experience ACT "from the inside" and get your hands dirty using ACT metaphors and exercises. Many of these exercises have been used in past workshops and were well-received by other participants. This will not be a "sit back and listen" lecture.  

Training Level
This workshop is for beginners and intermediate level ACT practitioners. This workshop is ideal for anyone who knows about ACT and is eager to learn more and to deepen their proficiency with ACT. Some (at least minimal) prior exposure to ACT or personal reading on ACT is preferred. In other words, don't drag along a friend who has never heard about ACT before -- this is not the right event for that!

Printable flyer for this workshop

Dr. Joel Guarna is a licensed psychologist in the state of Maine. He earned his PhD from Bowling Green State University in 2000 and trained at the Boston Consortium in Clinical Psychology as a predoctoral intern and postdoctoral fellow. Joel later served as a staff psychologist in the Department of Veterans Affairs Healthcare System in Boston. Joel opened his private practice, White Pine Behavioral Health, in 2005. He now splits his time between his private practice and the Mercy Pain Center, both in Portland.  Joel's areas of interest and specialization include Cognitive-Behavioral Therapies (CBT), Acceptance & Commitment Therapy (ACT), mind/body health and mindfulness-based therapies, health psychology, addictions treatment, and general practice. He was introduced to ACT in 1999 and has attended many workshops and given numerous talks and trainings on ACT over the past several years.  Joel Guarna's Website | CV

Teresa Valliere is a licensed clinical social worker, addiction specialist and clinical supervisor. Following her personal interest in healing and wellness, she began pursuing a second career in 1990. Teresa obtained a Bachelor of Social Work, with minors in religion and psychology at North Carolina State, and went on to complete a Master in Social Work from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill specializing in adult mental health. Since 1997, she has worked with adults with mental illness and addiction in a variety of settings - inpatient and outpatient. Along the way, she pursued additional training in trauma treatment, relational therapy, domestic violence, anger management, chronic pain management, loss and grief, mindfulness based stress reduction, and spirituality. Teresa believes wellness comes from living in alignment with your body, mind, spirit and community. As a supervisor over the last 13 years, she has been exploring and using models of relational management and navigating difficult conversations to enrich and strengthen working environments of professional helpers. Finally, in addition to providing direct service and supervision, Teresa is an experienced trainer in ACT, MI, groups and supervision.  Teresa Valliere's Website | CV.

Continuing Education
Psychologists and alcohol and drug counselors in Maine: White Pine Institute has submitted applications for continuing education (12 CEs) approval for psychologists and alcohol and drug counselors through the appropriate boards. Counselors and social workers in Maine: In Maine, the Boards overseeing LCPCs and social workers no longer require preapproval for CE trainings. Appropriate documentation will be provided so counselors and social workers can submit for continuing education to their respective boards. Out of state therapists and other health care providers: Documentation of your attendance will be provided for you to use should you decide to seek CE approval from your respective board.

  • This event is open to health care and behavioral health care professionals only. 
  • If you require any special accommodations, please be sure to contact us well before the date of the event. 
  • Please review our Cancelation/Refund, Grievance, and other Policies HERE.  

Register Now!

Registration is $225