The values that imbue my practice are also the values that I seek to embody and encourage in my clients. The combination of lifelong learning, cultivation of compassionate curiosity and continued development of self-awareness underlie the process I use for myself and in my practice helping people with persistent pain. The diagram below illustrates how learning, self-reflection and skill development work together in a continuous cycle, within an environment of safe exploration, to move from chronic pain and disability to self-empowerment.

Definitions: self-regulation: ability to recognize and manage reactions to thoughts, feelings and happenings; self-efficacy: belief in one’s own ability to perform activities despite pain, which influences pain-related outcomes[2, 3]; psychological flexibility: ability to persist in or change behavior as a conscious response to thoughts, feelings, situations and personal goals and values[4].