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Digital Recording

ACT Interventions For Anxiety-Based Issues: Perfectionism, Fear of Failure, and Self-Criticism.

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Jennifer Kemp, MPsych (Clinical)
7 Hours
Nov 08, 2022
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Media Type:
Digital Recording
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Perfectionism can take over your clients’ lives... jeopardise their most important relationships...

And trap them in a cycle of disappointment when they—and others—fall short of their unattainable standards.

They might receive praise from their community for their “work ethic”, or feel a sense of control over their lives by being perfectionistic. So they often don’t see these behaviours as a problem...

Even though these negative patterns contribute to mental health disorders like anxiety, depression, obsessive-compulsive disorder, hoarding, body dysmorphic disorder and even suicide.

Not only that, but perfectionistic behaviours often undermine treatment efforts...

Which can make you feel like you’re in a no-win situation with these clients.

But, there is a proven way to help perfectionists live a fuller, happier life.

Viewing perfectionism through the lens of Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT) allows you to see—and treat—perfectionism as habitual patterns of unhelpful behaviour instead of an unchangeable element of identity...

Which makes it so much easier for you to treat, and for clients to find relief.

Now, in this live training, ACT trainer Jennifer Kemp will show you how to integrate this powerful modality into your practice to create an evidence-based approach to treating perfectionism.

You’ll walk away with templates, scripts and handouts you can use with your clients immediately...

And the skills to help them let go of unhelpful behaviours, build psychological flexibility and develop self-compassion so they can live their best (imperfect) life.



There are no known risks to adding this information and methodology to client work. The approach is simple, empowering and respectful, as well as evidence-based for a wide range of client presentations and mental health problems.

The content of this program is designed primarily for work with older adolescents and adults. The information provided will be relevant to children, but the program will not provide specific strategies to adapt the approach to work with children (e.g. play-based approaches).



This online program is worth 7 hours CPD.



Jennifer Kemp, MPsych (Clinical)'s Profile

Jennifer Kemp, MPsych (Clinical) Related seminars and products

Adelaide Behaviour Therapy

Jennifer Kemp is a privately practicing Clinical Psychologist based in Adelaide, Australia. She sees adults struggling with perfectionism, eating disorders, body image problems, anxiety, obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD), weight management, and chronic illness, seamlessly applying acceptance and commitment therapy (ACT), behaviour therapy and compassion-focused therapy approaches. Jennifer balances this with writing, presenting, and providing consultations to professionals seeking to deepen their therapeutic practice and application of ACT.

Jennifer is the author of “The ACT Workbook for Perfectionism: Build Your Best (Imperfect) Life Using Powerful Acceptance & Commitment Therapy and Self-Compassion Skills”, launched by New Harbinger in December 2021, as well as and several e-books including “The Perfectionistic Therapist: Striving to Help and Never Fail”. Jennifer is a highly sought-after speaker, trainer, and podcast guest, regularly presenting to local and international audiences on the topic of perfectionism, self-criticism, and self-compassion as a therapist. She is delivered several professional workshops for the Clinical College of the Australian Psychological Society, Association for Contextual Behavioural Science (ACBS) World Conference, and International OCD Foundation (IOCDF) Online World Conference.

Speaker Disclosures:
Financial: Jennifer Kemp has an employment relationship with Adelaide Behaviour Therapy. She receives a speaking honorarium from PESI, Inc. She has no relevant financial relationships with ineligible organizations.
Non-financial: Jennifer Kemp is a member of the Australian Psychological Society and the Association of Contextual Behavioural Science. She is a fellow of APS Clinical College of Psychologists.

Additional Info

How will you benefit from attending this training?
  1. You’ll be able to identify unhelpful perfectionistic patterns in your clients and understand how these patterns contribute to—and sustain—their self-criticism, emotional rigidity and other mental health problems
  2. You’ll know how to customize evidence-based treatment approaches that addresses your clients’ unique challenges with perfectionism
  3. You’ll be able to help clients let go of unhelpful habits, build greater psychological flexibility and develop greater self-compassion


Part 1: Understanding perfectionism from a contextual behavioural perspective (1.5 hours)

  • Understanding perfectionism
  • The five processes of unhelpful perfectionism
  • Identifying perfectionistic processes in clients


Part 2: Creating a foundation for change (1.5 hours)

  • Building a case for change using creative hopelessness
  • Identifying the targets for your intervention
  • Contextual factors that keep perfectionists stuck
  • Avoidance loops that offer short-term relief


Part 3: Transforming self-criticism using self-compassion + action (1.75 hours)

  • How self-criticism undermines valued action
  • Introducing the passengers on the bus metaphor
  • Understanding what’s important using values
  • Introducing the self-critical passenger
  • How do you respond to self-criticism?
  • Introducing compassion for the self-critical passenger
  • Strategies to build self-compassion


Part 4: Becoming more than perfect (1.25 hours)

  • Building a flexible self
  • Helping perfectionists achieve lasting change
  • Becoming more than perfect
  • Living your best (imperfect) life


  1. Diagnose unhelpful perfectionism in their clients and themselves, creating a clear and concise formulation within functional contextual behavioural framework
  2. Distinguish between helpful and unhelpful perfectionistic patterns including the differences in how unhelpful patterns develop and are maintained despite long-term unwanted consequences
  3. Demonstrate several treatment strategies that build psychological flexibility and self-compassion in people struggling with perfectionism, including strategies that help people:
    • Modify entrenched and unhelpful behaviour patterns such as procrastination, checking, and avoidance
    • Respond to perfectionistic self-criticism in more helpful and compassionate ways
    • Develop a more flexible sense of self that extends beyond being ‘perfect’

This workshop will provide you with a comprehensive understanding of unhelpful perfectionism and give you the specific skills you need to treat this problem in your clients, improving their ability to achieve their goals and live a meaningful and valued life. - Jennifer Kemp

Target Audience

This live training is especially suited for both experienced and early career psychologists, Social Workers, professional practicing counsellors/therapists, mental health nurses and executive/leadership coaches.


Experience required of potential seminar participants: This training is designed for people trained in psychological science. It’s expected that participants will have a basic understanding of behavioural principles.

This training will NOT teach Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT) from the ground up. Rather it explores the application of ACT principles to unhelpful perfectionism and self-criticism.

A basic knowledge of ACT and behavioural principles are helpful, but not essential to benefit from this program. All concepts used within the training will be explained at the time.

If you have training in ACT, this content will deepen your understanding and broaden your ability to apply ACT in a range of contexts.



Overall:      4.8

Total Reviews: 79

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