Mindfulness-based psychoeducation for schizophrenia spectrum disorders: a qualitative analysis of participants’ experiences

Angie Ho Yan Lam, Sau Fong Leung, Wai Tong Chien

Research output: Journal article publicationJournal articleAcademic researchpeer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)


Background: Mindfulness-based psychoeducation program (MBPP) has been proposed as a new approach to improve the overall outcomes for individuals with schizophrenia spectrum disorders. However, to date, limited studies have examined the participants’ experiences of MBPP for schizophrenia. Aim: The aim of this study was to explore the experiences of individuals with schizophrenia spectrum disorders (SSDs) who underwent an 8-week MBPP with respect to their perception of the benefits and unusual challenges of mindfulness training and self-practices. Method: Twenty-four (n = 24) individuals with SSDs were invited to participate in an 8-week MBPP. A total of eight participants were invited for semi-structured interview one week after the final class of MBPP. The semi-structured interview was conducted in Cantonese and data were transcribed by the first author. Of the eight participants, five participants had unusual experiences and three participants had a positive experience with MBPP. They were included to provide more candid understanding on the constituents of diverse experience towards MBPP. An interview guide was developed to understand the patients' perceptions of MBPP, the challenege in self-practising mindfulness, and the changes in how they coped with their illness during and after taking part in MBPP. Qualitative data from the semi-structured interview were recorded by a research assistant and the transcripts were proof-read by the participants to ensure accuracy. The Software NVivo 12 Pro was used to manage the qualitative data from the semi-structured interview. Thematic analysis was adopted to identify the major themes from the qualitative data. Result: Five themes emerged: developing a state of mindfulness, empowering illness management, learning a new way to regulate emotion, encountering barriers in self-practising mindfulness and preference for bodily mindfulness. Conclusion: The findings provide comprehensive knowledge and deeper insights into treatment processes of mindfulness psychoeducation as an intervention for schizophrenia spectrum disorders. Impact statement: This study establishes a body of knowledge regarding people with schizophrenia spectrum disorders who received mindfulness psychoeducation intervention. The results suggest that patients can develop a new way to regulate emotion and manage their illness through mindfulness psychoeducation. The perceived negative experience of some patients also warrants closer attention in mindfulness practice, especially for individuals with schizophrenia spectrum disorders. Further research could focus on factors leading to the negative consequences of mindfulness practice and the ways to minimize the negative consequeces.

Original languageEnglish
JournalContemporary Nurse
Publication statusPublished - 28 Oct 2021


  • emotion regulation
  • illness management
  • mindfulness
  • psychoeducation
  • schizophrenia

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Nursing


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