The importance of values ​​for well-being

The importance of values ​​for well-being

Values ​​foster a connection and coherence between what you believe in, love and value, and what you do. This is why it is said that values ​​help people along the path of life. 

The importance of values ​​for well-being

Last update: 19 March, 2020

Pain and situations that cause discomfort are an integral part of life, just as it is the importance of values ​​to achieve well-being. Man naturally tends to escape from negative emotions and feelings. However, it is important to understand that avoiding suffering is not a viable solution.

Negative emotions and feelings must be integrated so that learning from all experiences can affect them as positively as possible in the future. By avoiding and canceling these emotions, suffering is allowed to survive latent in us, paralyzing us. 

Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT in English) works on an experiential behavioral and cognitive psychotherapy approach based on the relational frame theory of language. It is a perspective that emphasizes various concepts such as: experiential avoidance, cognitive fusion, absence or weakening of values ​​and behavioral rigidity. Let's see why realizing the importance of values ​​in our life is essential to achieve well-being!

The importance of values ​​in psychotherapy

Current psychotherapy attaches great importance to values, considering them part of the personal context of each individual. In turn, an emphasis is placed on acceptance, rejecting the critical attitude of those who complain continuously in order to obtain an illusion of well-being.

From the perspective of acceptance and commitment therapy, the goal is to eliminate psychological rigidity through basic mechanisms such as acceptance, being present, the commitment to one's values, the discovery of the ego as a context and the spread of negative or uncomfortable thoughts.

In short words, the purpose is to create a life that is meaningful to the person, helping her to accept pain as an integral part of it, rather than dragging it along forever.

It is important that patients keep in mind that some things are not under their control, so that they can put aside rigid and accusatory attitudes, discovering the values ​​of well-being and tranquility.

Values ​​vs malaise

In order to help the patient, it is necessary to determine his values ​​and verify that his behavior depends on them.

Most likely her daily behaviors are focused on solving problems, often forgetting the importance of values. This situation can trigger experiential avoidance disorder, which has to do with the cancellation of thoughts and feelings associated with negative experiences.

The goal of therapy is to help the person to make a commitment to behave according to the perspective of achieving what he believes in. In doing so, she will have to be able to deal with her problems and not simply "undo" the suffering that brought her to therapy.

Starting as a basis from personal values, a change in behavior can be promoted, thus achieving well-being. It will improve psychological health through a wide range of values-oriented behaviors.

On the other hand, unwanted cognitive (thoughts) and emotional states such as sadness, anxiety, worries, fear, etc., are considered part of the human condition, therefore natural. It goes without saying that they must be integrated into life, not shunned by fighting against them. So:

  • Achieving greater well-being with the commitment of one's actions is fundamental; conduct must be guided by what is loved and valued.
  • We must learn to contemplate malaise as something natural that is part of life, accepting the moments of malaise without fighting them or resisting them, so as not to prolong the suffering.
  • Values ​​are constantly changing and never ending; they can be cultivated throughout life.

The values ​​that a person chooses for himself must be the push that guides his behavior towards achieving them. By doing so, coherence is encouraged between what is valued and what is done, achieving well-being.


Acceptance and Commitment Therapy works on accepting the importance of values ​​for well-being based on four components:

  • Values (that which is valued and loved). For example: family, friends, generosity, safety, self-care, fun, work or training ...
  • Exposure and non-avoidance of unwanted internal events, that is, negative or inappropriate thoughts and emotions.
  • Defusione, that is, the deactivation of functions and distancing from unpleasant emotions and thoughts.
  • Reinforcement behaviors guided by what you love and what you value.

In other words, the psychologist helps each patient to define his personal values ​​by searching for feared and avoided thoughts and emotions, so that he learns to distance himself from them and value them for what they are: only thoughts or feelings. It will help to understand that not everything we feel or feel has value simply because we feel or feel it. There are also junk thoughts and emotions.

The treatment based on the values ​​of the person helps to orient the change according to what is considered of value.

The importance of values: they can lead us to action and well-being

Values ​​drive us. They are beliefs that trigger specific actions and situations, they guide the person's actions according to the priorities he has set for himself. The importance of values ​​in psychotherapy, therefore, represents a combination of verbal rules and consequences of each person's personal history and the commitment they have made.

Values ​​facilitate decision making, which in turn allows you to defeat the tension that comes from trying to control internal and external pressures related to the avoidance of malaise. All this promotes psychological well-being.

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