Stories of growth and wisdom: A mixed-methods study of people living well with pain.

Owens, J. E., Menard, M., Plews-Ogan, M., Calhoun, L. G., & Ardelt, M. (2016). Stories of growth and wisdom: A mixed-methods study of people living well with pain. Global Advances in Health and Medicine, 5(1), 16-28.

Abstract: Chronic pain remains a daunting clinical challenge, affecting 30% of people in the United States and 20% of the global population. People meeting this challenge by achieving wellbeing while living with pain are a virtually untapped source of wisdom about this persistent problem. Employing a concurrent mixed-methods design, we studied 80 people living with chronic pain with “positive stories to tell” using semi-structured interviews and standardized questionnaires. In-depth interviews focused on what helped, what hindered, how they changed, and advice for others in similar circumstances. Major qualitative themes included acceptance, openness, self-efficacy, hope, perseverance, self-regulation, kinesthetic awareness, holistic approaches and integrative therapies, self-care, spirituality, social support, and therapeutic lifestyle behaviors such as music, writing, art, gardening, and spending time in nature. Themes of growth and wisdom included enhanced relationships, perspective, clarity, strength, gratitude, compassion, new directions, and spiritual change. Based on narrative analysis of the interviews and Ardelt's Three-Dimensional Wisdom Model, participants were divided into 2 groups: 59 wisdom exemplars and 21 nonexemplars. Non-exemplar themes were largely negative and in direct contrast to the exemplar themes. Quantitatively, wisdom exemplars scored significantly higher in Openness and Agreeableness and lower in Neuroticism compared to non-exemplars. Wisdom exemplars also scored higher in Wisdom, Gratitude, Forgiveness, and Posttraumatic Growth than nonexemplars, and more exemplars used integrative therapies compared to the non-exemplars. As a whole, the exemplar narratives illustrate a Positive Approach Model (PAM) for living well with pain, which allows for a more expansive pain narrative, provides positive role models for patients and clinicians, and contributes to a broader theoretical perspective on persistent pain.

Read the article: Owens, J. E., Menard, M., Plews-Ogan, M., Calhoun, L. G., & Ardelt, M. (2016). Stories of growth and wisdom: A mixed-methods study of people living well with pain. Global Advances in Health and Medicine, 5(1), 16-28.



(My publication)Posted:Jan 01 2016, 12:00 AM by jlmatelski
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