Counseling and Action

Toward Life-Enhancing Work, Relationships, and Identity

  • Richard A. Young
  • José F. Domene
  • Ladislav Valach

Table of contents

  1. Front Matter
    Pages i-xii
  2. Richard A. Young, José F. Domene, Ladislav Valach
    Pages 1-10
  3. Action and Counseling Approaches and Issues

  4. Counseling and Contextual Action Theory

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 149-149
    2. José F. Domene, Ladislav Valach, Richard A. Young
      Pages 151-166
    3. Ladislav Valach, Richard A. Young, José F. Domene
      Pages 167-193
  5. Applying Contextual Action Theory in Counseling Settings and Issues

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 195-195
    2. Sheila K. Marshall, Margo Nelson, Kristen Goessling, Jane Chipman, Grant Charles
      Pages 197-209
    3. Brenda Yaari Dyer
      Pages 255-270
    4. Ladislav Valach, Richard A. Young
      Pages 295-313
  6. Action and Counseling Practice

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 315-315
    2. Richard A. Young, Ladislav Valach, José F. Domene
      Pages 317-336
  7. Back Matter
    Pages 337-350

About this book


Engaging in action is at the heart of our most meaningful experiences. And given the fast-paced, goal-driven nature of modern society, engagement in action is also central to how we perceive ourselves. Action has traditionally been viewed as an end product of the counseling process, but now a bold new redefinition makes counseling not only a driver of action, but an action in itself.

Counseling and Action couples a timely update on the multiple roles of action in counseling with an action-based framework for enhancing progress between client and professional. Grounded in the core concepts of contextual action theory as well as key aspects of counseling (e.g., identity, intentionality, emotion), the book explicates an approach that is responsive to client complexities and the larger social conditions that frame them. Expert-penned chapters apply theory to practice, illustrating levels of engagement in action as counselor and client negotiate goals and work toward their realization. And an especially useful section offers guidelines for intervening with specific populations and addressing particular issues. Among the topics covered:

  • Designing projects for career construction.
  • Agentic action in context.
  • Counseling intentional addiction recovery grounded in relationships and social meaning.
  • The action of mindfulness in counseling.
  • A contextual action theory perspective on self-efficacy in individual counseling.
  • Counseling processes and procedures through the lens of contextual action theory.

With its forceful argument for a quantum leap in both theory and practice, Counseling and Action is transformative reading for professionals, educators, and graduate students in social work, psychotherapy, psychology, and counseling.


Action Theory Addiction Recovery Adolescent Eating Disorders Career Counseling Counseling Counseling Adolescents Counseling Psychology Counseling Suicidality Counseling Women Emotion-focused Therapy Identity Construction Mindfulness Vocational Psychology

Editors and affiliations

  • Richard A. Young
    • 1
  • José F. Domene
    • 2
  • Ladislav Valach
    • 3
  1. 1.Department of Educational and Counselling Psychology and Special EducationUniversity of British ColumbiaVancouverCanada
  2. 2.Faculty of EducationUniversity of New BrunswickFrederictonCanada
  3. 3.BerneSwitzerland

Bibliographic information