Table 2

Overview of the intervention

SessionsContent
Week 1—Introduction
  • Welcoming the participants and introducing the team

  • A brief overview of the purpose of the programme and the content of each session

  • Explaining basic ACT tenets

  • The nature of persistent pain and getting caught up in the struggle

  • Homework- Attempted solutions and their long-term effects exercise (Russ Harriss)

Week 2—Learning to be mindful
  • Reflections on the homework, opportunity for questions

  • What is Mindfulness and how is it useful?

  • Embedding Mindfulness into daily activities (eating, walking, communication, acts of kindness)

  • Group body scan exercise (20 min)

  • Homework: Daily Mindfulness practice sheet

Week 3—Defusion
  • Reflecting on Mindfulness practice

  • What is defusion and how to hold self-stories lightly

  • Brief Observer self exercise

  • ‘Passengers on the bus’ metaphor and group discussion

  • Homework based on ‘Passengers on the bus’

Week 4—Self-compassion and self-care
  • Reflection on homework and Mindfulness practice

  • Self-compassion explained

  • Self-care activities

  • Eight practices for recovery and a life well-lived (Kelly G. Wilson)

  • Homework: Growing circle of self-care (Kelly G. Wilson)

Week 5—Acceptance and values
  • Reflecting on self-care and self-compassion

  • Acceptance as opposed to avoidance

  • Acceptance physical exercise

  • What are values and why are they important?

  • Matrix interview exercise (Kelly G. Wilson)

  • Homework: Values clarification exercise

Week 6—Committed action—a way forward
  • Brief reflection on values

  • Committed actions towards a rich, meaningful life

  • The willingness and Action Plan exercise (Russ Harriss)

  • How will you take this forward?

  • Final conclusions and reminder about follow-up

  • ACT, Acceptance and Commitment Therapy.