What is the Delta Program? The core of Delta is a new logic for habit change A new approach for people w wish to change things in everyday lifestyle in order to live in a way that is more healthy and at the same time enjoyable or livable. This wish may be motivated by overweight and health problems or risks associated with it, but it may just as well be mainly about other fields where one wants to cultivate new habits – sustainable and livable.
“Cultivating” habits, as if caring for a green, well balanced garden – this is a good metaphor for what is special about the delta approach. Rather than constantly having to produce a constant strain against all kinds of habits, you learn to be awake with them, accept yourself having them. This way you can learn to dance with them, as we say in the Delta program. This is possible through a systematic combination of “low tension strategies” including mindfulness training, bodily acceptance, stress reduction, systematic individual habit experimentation, and group support.
The results show a pattern very different from usual dieting etc. Rather than the typical fast weight loss that disappears almost as quickly again, the Delta-program seems to work slowly but steadily – and not only in body mass but also other measures of health and quality of life. kvalitet.
In practice the program is course with a group of about 25 people who meet for weekly sessions 10 times (3 hours each) and a full day (7 hours) event towards the end of the course. A key role is played by direct practical experience through a set of methods that participants learn, train and share experiences from. It requires daily home training with mindfulness meditations and other exercises, 2 times 20 minutes per day. We strongly recommend not to start on the program until one is clear about the intention and ability to follow the sessions and home training – basically, “giving delta a chance for 3 months”. After that, participants can meaningfully decide how and what to continue experimenting and training with. They will be well prepared to continue with delta methods on their own, but on top of that we often see delta groups self-organize meditation evenings, meals, walks or other shared activities. We also offer follow-up Delta meetings 4-6 times a year.
Delta group leaders are experienced facilitators who are qualified mindfulness instructors (MBSR) and have taken an additional delta group facilitation course with the delta program project group. At present, only Niels Viggo Hansen and Rikke Mark Lyngsø run Delta groups but we expect to run a facilitator course during spring 18.
A research project conducted by Niels Viggo Hansen et al. at Copenhagen University 2010-14 was the origin of the first version of the Delta program and the first effect trial. The presen Delta groups in Randers run as a pilot project in a cooperation between Aarhus University, Randers Municipal Health Center and the Danish Center for Mindfulness. More scientific partners are involved in a next research phase we are currently designing. The first scientific publication on the Delta program can be read here.