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Much research has adopted a deficits-based approach to chronic pain, neglecting the study of flourishing. Using a Q-methodological framework, this study sought to explore how individuals experience, understand and perceive flourishing in the context of young people living with chronic pain. Fifty-four individuals completed a Q-sorting task, indicating their level of agreement and disagreement with 52 statements. Q-analysis generated three factors that represented clear viewpoints of participants: ‘Pain is not a barrier to flourishing’, ‘Adapting to a new life’ and ‘Adopting a positive perspective’. Factors expressed the viewpoints that flexibility is key to enjoying life despite chronic pain, while resilience, management of stressors, acceptance and problem-solving may be required to flourish with chronic pain. Participants’ understanding of flourishing also focused on the appreciation and enjoyment of life and achievements. This study provides a useful contribution towards furthering our understanding of flourishing in young people living with chronic pain.

Original publication




Journal article


Journal of Health Psychology


SAGE Publications

Publication Date