Improve Preschool Teacher Job Satisfaction with Mindfulness

Improve Preschool Teacher Job Satisfaction with Mindfulness

 

By John M. de Castro, Ph.D.

 

“Teachers who engage in mindfulness-based practices have been shown to have lower cortisol levels and to be more responsive and compassionate towards their students, less emotionally reactive, and more intentional in their teaching practices.” – Meghan Robles

 

Stress is epidemic in the workplace with almost two thirds of workers reporting high levels of stress at work. This often produces burnout; fatigue, cynicism, emotional exhaustion, and professional inefficacy. In a school setting, this burnout and exhaustion not only affects teachers and administrators personally, but also the students and schools, as it produces a loss of enthusiasm, empathy, and compassion. If stress doesn’t produce burnout, it at least can produce lowered psychological well-being and job satisfaction and impair teaching performance.

 

Hence, there is a need to identify methods of reducing stress and improve teachers’ psychological health. Mindfulness has been demonstrated to be helpful in reducing the psychological and physiological responses to stress and for treating and preventing burnout in a number of work environments. But the relationship of mindfulness on preschool teacher’s job satisfaction has not been explored.

 

In today’s Research News article “Can Trait Mindfulness Improve Job Satisfaction? The Relationship Between Trait Mindfulness and Job Satisfaction of Preschool Teachers: The Sequential Mediating Effect of Basic Psychological Needs and Positive Emotions.” (See summary below or view the full text of the study at: https://www.frontiersin.org/articles/10.3389/fpsyg.2021.788035/full?utm_source=F-AAE&utm_medium=EMLF&utm_campaign=MRK_1796285_a0P58000000G0YfEAK_Psycho_20211223_arts_A ) Song and colleagues recruited kindergarten teachers and had them complete an online survey measuring mindfulness, positive emotions, job satisfaction, and basic psychological needs, including capacity needs, relationship needs, and autonomy needs.

 

They found that the higher the teacher’s level of mindfulness the higher the levels of basic psychological needs, positive emotions, and job satisfaction and the higher the level of positive emotions the higher the levels of basic psychological needs and job satisfaction. Modelling analysis revealed that mindfulness was associated with higher levels of job satisfaction directly and also indirectly by being associated with higher levels of basic psychological needs and positive emotions that were in turn associated with higher levels of job satisfaction.

 

These findings are correlational and as such causation cannot be determined. But previous controlled studies have demonstrated that mindfulness training increases positive emotions, job satisfaction, and basic psychological needs. So, the present findings are probably due to causative effects of mindfulness. This suggests that mindfulness is an important determinant of the psychological well-being of kindergarten teachers leading to satisfaction with their work. This should decrease the likelihood of burnout and improve teaching performance. This further suggests that mindfulness training would be of great benefit for preschool teachers.

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So, improve preschool teacher job satisfaction with mindfulness.

 

Mindfulness can also help us to be more effective at reducing conflict and developing more positive ways of relating in the classroom, which can help us feel more job satisfaction.” – Patricia Jennings

 

CMCS – Center for Mindfulness and Contemplative Studies

 

This and other Contemplative Studies posts are available on Twitter @MindfulResearch

 

Study Summary

 

Song Z, Pan B and Wang Y (2021) Can Trait Mindfulness Improve Job Satisfaction? The Relationship Between Trait Mindfulness and Job Satisfaction of Preschool Teachers: The Sequential Mediating Effect of Basic Psychological Needs and Positive Emotions. Front. Psychol. 12:788035. doi: 10.3389/fpsyg.2021.788035

 

Objective: This study aims to explore the relationship between basic psychological needs and positive emotions of preschool teachers between trait mindfulness and job satisfaction.

Methods: Three hundred and ninety-eight preschool teachers were tested with mindfulness attention awareness scale, basic psychological needs scale, positive emotion scale, and job satisfaction scale.

Results: Preschool teachers trait mindfulness can predict job satisfaction (β = 0.265, p < 0. 001). Preschool teachers trait mindfulness has an indirect impact on job satisfaction through basic psychological needs (β = 0.059, p = 0.002), and preschool teachers trait mindfulness has an indirect impact on job satisfaction through positive emotions (β = 0.123, p < 0. 001). In addition, basic psychological needs and positive emotions play a sequential intermediary role between preschool teachers trait mindfulness and job satisfaction (β = 0.017, p < 0. 001).

Conclusion: Basic psychological needs and positive emotions play a sequential mediating role between preschool teachers trait mindfulness and job satisfaction, and this sequential mediating effect accounts for a high proportion of the total effect.

https://www.frontiersin.org/articles/10.3389/fpsyg.2021.788035/full?utm_source=F-AAE&utm_medium=EMLF&utm_campaign=MRK_1796285_a0P58000000G0YfEAK_Psycho_20211223_arts_A

Spirituality is Associated with Awe/Gratitude and Well-Being during the Covid-19 Pandemic

Spirituality is Associated with Awe/Gratitude and Well-Being during the Covid-19 Pandemic

 

By John M. de Castro, Ph.D.

 

“During the COVID-19 pandemic . . . spirituality and religious practices are a protective factor connected not only with psychological and mental but also physical health.” – Ilaria Coppola

 

The COVID-19 pandemic has challenged the mental and physical health of the population. It has created intense stress for frontline workers but also for people simply isolating at home. Religion and spirituality have been promulgated as solutions to the challenges of life. There have been a number of studies of the influence of religiosity and spirituality on the physical and psychological well-being of practitioners mostly showing positive benefits, with spirituality encouraging personal growth and mental health. Perhaps, then, spirituality can be helpful in coping with the mental and physical challenges resulting from the COVID-19 pandemic.

 

In today’s Research News article “Awe/Gratitude as an Experiential Aspect of Spirituality and Its Association to Perceived Positive Changes During the COVID-19 Pandemic.” (See summary below or view the full text of the study at: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8095710/ ) Büssing and colleagues recruited adults online during the Covid-19 pandemic and had them complete online measures of awe/gratitude, perception of changes, well-being, life satisfaction, perception of burden, spirituality, and physical activities.

 

They found that Awe/Gratitude was associated with higher levels of frequency of meditation practice, female gender, life satisfaction and well-being, faith as a stronghold, and life reflection because of the pandemic and lower levels of perceived burden. Well-being was found to be significantly associated with higher life satisfaction, nature/silence/contemplation, and awe/gratitude and with lower perceived burden. A mediation analysis revealed that awe/gratitude mediated the associations between nature/silence/contemplation and well-being, between well-being and relationships, and between well-being and reflections.

 

These findings must be interpreted cautiously as they were correlational and as such causation cannot be determined. But they demonstrated that perceptions of awe followed by feelings of gratitude during the Covid-19 pandemic were higher in people who were religions, meditated frequently, and with religious backgrounds. But awe/gratitude did not moderate the negative consequences of the pandemic but rather appear to be associated with higher levels of the positive aspects of life including spirituality. Awe/gratitude itself is a component of spiritual awareness and is promoted by spiritual practices such as meditation and it appears to be associated higher levels of well-being even in the face of a pandemic.

 

So, spirituality is associated with awe/gratitude and well-being during the Covid-19 pandemic.

 

“One wonders if social distancing might become the new normal, so scheduling time for spiritual life-building can become part of the change of filling the void of loneliness.” – William Creech

 

CMCS – Center for Mindfulness and Contemplative Studies

 

This and other Contemplative Studies posts are available on Twitter @MindfulResearch

 

Study Summary

 

Büssing, A., Rodrigues Recchia, D., Dienberg, T., Surzykiewicz, J., & Baumann, K. (2021). Awe/Gratitude as an Experiential Aspect of Spirituality and Its Association to Perceived Positive Changes During the COVID-19 Pandemic. Frontiers in psychiatry, 12, 642716. https://doi.org/10.3389/fpsyt.2021.642716

 

Abstract

Background: While the COVID-19 pandemic has affected the lives of almost all people worldwide, many people observed also positive changes in their attitudes and behaviors. This can be seen in the context of posttraumatic growth. These perceived changes refer to five main categories: Nature/Silence/Contemplation, Spirituality, Relationships, Reflection on life, and Digital media usage. A previous study with persons recruited in June 2020 directly after the lockdown in Germany showed that the best predictors of these perceived changes related to the Corona pandemic were the ability to mindfully stop and pause in distinct situations, to be “spellbound at the moment” and to become “quiet and devout,” indicating moments of wondering awe, with subsequent feelings of gratitude. Now, we intended to analyze (1) by whom and how strongly awe/gratitude was experienced during the COVID-19 pandemic, and (2) how these feelings relate to perceived changes and experienced burden, and (3) whether or not feelings of awe/gratitude contribute to participants’ well-being or may buffer perceived burden in terms of a resilience factor.

Methods: Online survey with standardized questionnaires [i.e., WHO-Five Well-being Index (WHO5), Life satisfaction (BMLSS), Awe/Gratitude scale (GrAw-7), and Perceived Changes Questionnaire (PCQ)] among 2,573 participants (68% women; mean age 48.7 ± 14.2 years, 74% with a Christian affiliation) from Germany recruited between June and November 2020.

Results: Awe/Gratitude scored significantly higher particularly among women (Cohen’s d = 0.40), older persons (d = 0.88), persons who rely on their faith as a “stronghold in difficult times” (d = 0.99), those with higher well-being (d = 0.70), and lower perceptions of loneliness (d = 0.49). With respect to perceived changes during the pandemic, more intense feelings of Awe/Gratitude were particularly related to Nature/Silence/Contemplation (r = 0.41), Spirituality (r = 0.41), and Relationships (r = 0.33). Regression analyses revealed that the best predictors of Awe/Gratitude (R2 = 0.40) were the frequency of meditation, female gender, life satisfaction and well-being, faith as a stronghold, and perceived burden and also life reflection, while Nature/Silence/Contemplation and Relationships had a further, but weaker, impact on Awe/Gratitude as a dependent variable. Awe/Gratitude was moderately associated with well-being (r = 0.32) and would predict 9% of participants’ well-being variance. The best predictors of participants’ well-being were multidimensional life satisfaction and low perceived burden (related to the pandemic), and further Awe/Gratitude and Nature/Silence/Contemplation; these would explain 47% of variance in well-being scores. However, Awe/Gratitude cannot be regarded as a buffer of the negative aspects of the COVID-19 pandemic, as it is only marginally (though negatively) related to perceived burden (r = −0.15). Mediation analysis showed that Awe/Gratitude mediates 42% of the link between well-being as a predictor on Nature/Silence/Contemplation as an outcome and has a direct effect of β = 0.15 (p < 0.001) and an indirect effect of β = 0.11 (p < 0.001). Further, Awe/Gratitude mediates 38% (p < 0.001) of the link between Nature/Silence/Contemplation as a predictor on well-being as the outcome; the direct effect is β = 0.18 (p < 0.001), and the indirect effect is β = 0.11 (p < 0.001).

Conclusions: The general ability to experience Awe/Gratitude particularly during the COVID-19 pandemic may sensitize to perceive the world around (including nature and concrete persons) more intensely, probably in terms of, or similar to, posttraumatic growth. As this awareness toward specific moments and situations that deeply “touch” a person was higher in persons with more intense meditation or prayer practice, one may assume that these practices may facilitate these perceptions in terms of a training. However, the experience of Awe/Gratitude does not necessarily buffer against adverse events in life and cannot prevent perceived burden due to the corona pandemic, but it facilitates to, nevertheless, perceive positive aspects of life even within difficult times. As Awe/Gratitude is further mediating the effects of Nature/Silence/Contemplation on well-being, intervention programs could help to train these perceptions, as these self-transcendent feelings are also related to prosocial behaviors with respectful treatment of others and commitment to persons in needs, and well-being.

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8095710/

 

Mindfulness Improves the Psychological Well-Being of Teachers in Non-Western Societies

Mindfulness Improves the Psychological Well-Being of Teachers in Non-Western Societies

 

By John M. de Castro, Ph.D.

 

Teachers who practice “mindfulness” are better able to reduce their own levels of stress and prevent burnout.” – Dee DiGioia

 

Stress is epidemic in the western workplace with almost two thirds of workers reporting high levels of stress at work. This often produces burnout; fatigue, cynicism, emotional exhaustion, and professional inefficacy. Teachers experience burnout at high rates. Roughly a half a million teachers out of a workforce of three million, leave the profession each year and the rate is almost double in poor schools compared to affluent schools. Indeed, nearly half of new teachers leave in their first five years.

 

Burnout frequently results from emotional exhaustion. This exhaustion not only affects the teachers personally, but also the students, as it produces a loss of enthusiasm, empathy, and compassion. Regardless of the reasons for burnout or its immediate presenting consequences, it is a threat to schools and their students. In fact, it is a threat to the entire educational systems as it contributes to the shortage of teachers. Hence, methods of reducing stress and improving teacher psychological health needs to be studied.

 

Mindfulness techniques are gaining increasing attention for the treatment of the symptoms of stress and burnout. They have been demonstrated to be helpful in reducing the psychological and physiological responses to stress and for treating and preventing burnout in a number of work environments including schools. But most of the research focuses on teachers in Western societies. There is a need to study if mindfulness is equally effective in Eastern societies.

 

In today’s Research News article “Effectiveness and Mechanisms of Mindfulness Training for School Teachers in Difficult Times: A Randomized Controlled Trial.” (See summary below or view the full text of the study at: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8443903/ ) Tsang and colleagues recruited elementary and secondary school teachers in Hong Kong and randomly assigned them to either a wait-list or to receive 8 weekly 90-minute sessions of mindfulness training along with home practice. The mindfulness training was based upon the Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction (MBSR) and the Mindfulness-Based Cognitive Therapy (MBCT) programs. They were measured before and after training and two months later for mindfulness, general health, insomnia, stress, positive and negative emotions, life satisfaction, emotion regulation, and mindfulness in teaching.

 

They found that in comparison to baseline and the wait-list group, the teachers who had received mindfulness training had significantly higher levels of mindfulness, general health, positive emotions, life satisfaction, emotion regulation, and mindfulness in teaching and significantly lower levels of insomnia, stress, and negative emotions that were maintained at the 2-month follow-up measurement. In addition, a mediation analysis demonstrated that mindfulness was associated with well-being directly and indirectly via emotion regulation such that mindfulness was associated with increased emotion regulation that was in turn associated with increased well-being. Similarly, mindfulness was associated with mindfulness in teaching directly and indirectly via well-being such that mindfulness was associated with increased well-being that was in turn associated with increased mindfulness in teaching.

 

The present study had a passive control condition, wait-list, and this leaves a number of potential confounding explanations of the results such as placebo effects, attentional effects, and experimenter bias. But a large amount of previous controlled research has demonstrated that mindfulness training produces increases in health, positive emotions, emotion regulation, and life satisfaction, and decreases in insomnia, stress, and negative emotions. So, the present benefits are likely due to the mindfulness training.

 

The findings are important as they demonstrate that teachers in an Eastern society were benefited by mindfulness training to the same extent and in the same ways as teachers in Western societies. Thus, the effects of mindfulness training appear to be universal, regardless of culture. The findings also demonstrate that mindfulness training has direct and indirect effects on well-being that similarly effects mindfulness in teaching. All of this suggests that mindfulness training improves the psychological well-being of teachers which likely makes them happier and more effective teachers.

 

So, mindfulness improves the psychological well-being of teachers in non-western societies

 

Through yoga, mindfulness and social-emotional learning exercises, educators . . .  learned strategies to help reduce stress, prioritize self-care, cultivate resilience and enhance their well-being.” – Wendy McMahon

 

CMCS – Center for Mindfulness and Contemplative Studies

 

This and other Contemplative Studies posts are also available on Google+ https://plus.google.com/106784388191201299496/posts and on Twitter @MindfulResearch

 

Study Summary

 

Tsang, K., Shum, K. K., Chan, W., Li, S. X., Kwan, H. W., Su, M. R., Wong, B., & Lam, S. F. (2021). Effectiveness and Mechanisms of Mindfulness Training for School Teachers in Difficult Times: A Randomized Controlled Trial. Mindfulness, 1–12. Advance online publication. https://doi.org/10.1007/s12671-021-01750-1

 

Abstract

Objectives

Research in recent years has shown that mindfulness-based interventions can enhance teachers’ mental and physical health. However, the existing studies were predominantly conducted in Western, educated, industrialized, rich, and democratic (WEIRD) societies. As a randomized controlled trial in a non-WEIRD society, the present study examined the effectiveness and mechanisms of mindfulness training for Hong Kong teachers in difficult times.

Methods

Teachers from primary and secondary schools (n = 186) were randomly assigned to mindfulness training (eight-week .b Foundations) or waitlist control condition. They completed online self-report surveys on measures of well-being, emotion management, and mindfulness in teaching at baseline, post-intervention, and two-month follow-up.

Results

The intervention group reported significantly higher levels of life satisfaction, positive affect, general health, along with significantly lower levels of insomnia, stress, and negative affect than the control group at post-test and two-month follow-up. The effect sizes were medium to large (ηp2 = 0.06 to 0.14). More importantly, teachers’ baseline well-being had a significant moderating effect on the intervention effectiveness. Those with a lower baseline in well-being benefitted more than their counterparts with a higher baseline. In addition, teachers’ emotion management was found to be the mediator through which mindfulness training enhanced teachers’ well-being. Such improvement in well-being also predicted higher levels of mindfulness in teaching.

Conclusions

This study provides evidence on the efficacy of mindfulness training for teachers beyond WEIRD societies. It suggests the universality and practicality of mindfulness training in enhancing teachers’ well-being and reducing their distress in difficult times.

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8443903/

 

Combined Meditation, Yoga, and Ethical Education have Additive Effects on Well-Being

Combined Meditation, Yoga, and Ethical Education have Additive Effects on Well-Being

 

By John M. de Castro, Ph.D.

 

When practiced together, yoga and meditation strengthen the connection between mind and body, thereby improving overall fitness and wellbeing.” – Peaceful Dragon

 

Mindfulness training has been shown to improve health and well-being in healthy individuals and those with medical and psychiatric conditions, Similarly, yoga practice has been shown to improve health and well-being in healthy individuals and those with medical and psychiatric conditions.  Meditation practice is known to decrease the psychological and physical responses to stress. Similarly, yoga practice has been shown to decrease the psychological and physical responses to stress. But there has been little research of the impact of combining meditation and yoga practices.

 

In today’s Research News article “Differential Effects of Ethical Education, Physical Hatha Yoga, and Mantra Meditation on Well-Being and Stress in Healthy Participants-An Experimental Single-Case Study.” (See summary below or view the full text of the study at: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8375679/ ) Matko and colleagues recruited healthy adult participants who did not practice meditation or yoga and randomly assigned them to one of 4 treatment conditions once a week for 8 weeks; mantra meditation alone, mantra meditation plus physical yoga, mantra meditation plus ethical education, and mantra meditation plus physical yoga and ethical education. They were also instructed to practice daily at home. They were measured weekly before and after training and 8 weeks and 12 months later for well-being, perceived stress, and life satisfaction and a daily home practice questionnaire.

 

They found that all conditions produced significant improvements in well-being, but the combined treatments produced greater improvements than mantra meditation alone with those that contained ethical education having the greatest benefits. All conditions produced equivalent significant increases in life satisfaction.

 

The results suggest that engaging in mindfulness practices produce lasting improvements in the well-being and life satisfaction of the participants. This improved well-being and life satisfaction produced by mindfulness practices have been well documented in prior research studies. In addition, the findings suggest that adding yoga and especially ethical education to meditation amplifies the improvements in well-being. Ethical education in the present study included training and discussion of non-violence, truthfulness, non-stealing, self-restraint, non-hoarding, cleanliness, contentment, and transcendence. This appeared to have an additive effect on well-being.

 

 

There was, however, a confounding variable which is the duration of practice. Whereas the weekly trainings for mantra meditation practice took 60 minutes, mantra meditation plus physical yoga took 105 minutes, mantra meditation plus ethical education took 135 minutes, and mantra meditation plus physical yoga and ethical education took 180 minutes. In addition, each practice was practiced daily for 20 minutes with the combined conditions being practiced for 40 and 60 minutes respectively. So, the more practice the greater the improvement in well-being. Future research needs to fix the amount of practice so that the total is the same for all conditions and their combinations.

 

So, combined meditation, yoga, and ethical education have additive effects on well-being.

 

The beauty of Yoga and Meditation, when they are merged together, helps one relish each and every moment of life. There is no place for stress and anxiety in a mind that enjoys Yoga. While Yoga poses promote blood circulation in the brain, Meditation makes sure it stays calm and composed to feel complete serenity.” – Manmohan Singhis

 

CMCS – Center for Mindfulness and Contemplative Studies

 

This and other Contemplative Studies posts are also available on Google+ https://plus.google.com/106784388191201299496/posts and on Twitter @MindfulResearch

 

Study Summary

 

Matko, K., Sedlmeier, P., & Bringmann, H. C. (2021). Differential Effects of Ethical Education, Physical Hatha Yoga, and Mantra Meditation on Well-Being and Stress in Healthy Participants-An Experimental Single-Case Study. Frontiers in psychology, 12, 672301. https://doi.org/10.3389/fpsyg.2021.672301

 

Abstract

Traditionally, yoga is a multicomponent practice consisting of postures, breathing techniques, meditation, mantras, and ethics. To date, only a few studies have tried to dismantle the effects of each of these components and their combinations. To fill this gap, we examined the incremental effects of ethical education and physical Hatha yoga on mantra meditation using a single-case multiple-baseline design. This study was part of a project evaluating the new mind–body program Meditation-Based Lifestyle Modification. Fifty-seven healthy participants with no regular yoga or meditation practice were randomly assigned to three baselines (7, 14, and 21 days) and four conditions using a random number generator. The conditions were mantra meditation alone (MA), meditation plus physical yoga (MY), meditation plus ethical education (ME), and meditation plus yoga and ethical education (MYE). All the interventions lasted for 8 weeks and were run consecutively according to baseline length. During the baseline and treatment phases, participants received daily questionnaires measuring their well-being (WHO-5 Well-Being Index), stress (Perceived Stress Scale), and subjective experiences. Forty-two participants completed the treatment and were entered in the analyses. We analyzed our data using visual inspection, effect size estimation (Tau-U), and multilevel modeling. Almost all participants showed a longitudinal increase in well-being. Regarding between-group differences, participants who received ethical education exhibited the largest increases in well-being (Tau-U = 0.30/0.23 for ME/MYE), followed by participants in the MY condition (Tau-U = 0.12). Conversely, participants in the MA condition showed no change (Tau-U = 0.07). There was a tendency for the combined treatments to decrease stress. This tendency was strongest in the MY condition (Tau-U = –0.40) and reversed in the MA condition (Tau-U = 0.17). These results emphasize the incremental and differential effects of practicing meditation in combination with other practices from the eight-fold yoga path. This approach is valuable for better understanding the multifaceted practice of yoga.

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8375679/

 

Improve Well-Being of Healthy Individuals with Mindfulness

Improve Well-Being of Healthy Individuals with Mindfulness

 

By John M. de Castro, Ph.D.

 

“engaging in mindfulness meditation cultivates our ability to both focus and broaden our attention, which is a practical way to elicit psychological well-being.” – Jennifer Wolkin

 

The primary focus of the majority of research on mindfulness has been on its ability to treat mental illness and negative emotional states such as anxiety, depression, and perceived stress. As such, it has been found to be effective for a large array of medical and psychiatric conditions, either stand-alone or in combination with more traditional therapies. But mindfulness training has also been shown to improve health and well-being in healthy individuals.

 

The most commonly used mindfulness technique for the treatment of depression is Mindfulness-Based Cognitive Therapy (MBCT).  MBCT involves mindfulness training, containing sitting and walking meditation and body scan, and cognitive therapy to alter how the patient relates to the thought processes that often underlie and exacerbate psychological symptoms. MBCT was developed to treat mental illness. So, it is not known if it can improve the well-being of healthy individuals.

 

In today’s Research News article “Effectiveness of Mindfulness-Based Cognitive Therapy for Improving Subjective and Eudaimonic Well-Being in Healthy Individuals: A Randomized Controlled Trial.” (See summary below or view the full text of the study at: https://www.frontiersin.org/articles/10.3389/fpsyg.2021.700916/full?utm_source=F-AAE&utm_medium=EMLF&utm_campaign=MRK_1714167_a0P58000000G0YfEAK_Psycho_20210831_arts_A ) Kosugi and colleagues recruited healthy adults and randomly assigned them to either a wait-list control condition or to receive 8 weekly, 2-hour group sessions of Mindfulness-Based Cognitive Therapy (MBCT). They were measured before, during, and after training and 8 weeks later for satisfaction with life, flourishing, positive and negative experiences, self-esteem, mindfulness, self-compassion, resilience, anxiety, depression, perceived stress, presenteeism, interoceptive awareness, and quality of life.

 

They found that in comparison to baseline and the wait-list control group, the group that received Mindfulness-Based Cognitive Therapy (MBCT) had significant increases in satisfaction with life, interoceptive awareness, mindfulness, self-compassion, resilience, and work productivity that were maintained 8 weeks after the end of training. Hence, MBCT produced significant improvements in the psychological states of healthy adults. So, MBCT is not only effective in improving the mental health of individuals with mental problems but also can increase the positive psychological states in healthy individuals.

 

This study had a passive comparison (control) condition. This leaves open the possibility that the results were affected by participant expectancies (placebo), experimenter bias, or attentional (Hawthorne) effects. Future research should compare Mindfulness-Based Cognitive Therapy (MBCT) treatment to an active control condition, e.g. exercise to eliminate the possible confounding variables.

 

So, improve well-being of healthy individuals with mindfulness.

 

The practice of mindfulness is an effective means of enhancing and maintaining optimal mental health and overall well-being, and can be implemented in every aspect of daily living.” – Rezvan Ameli

 

CMCS – Center for Mindfulness and Contemplative Studies

 

This and other Contemplative Studies posts are also available on Google+ https://plus.google.com/106784388191201299496/posts and on Twitter @MindfulResearch

 

Study Summary

 

Kosugi T, Ninomiya A, Nagaoka M, Hashimoto Z, Sawada K, Park S, Fujisawa D, Mimura M and Sado M (2021) Effectiveness of Mindfulness-Based Cognitive Therapy for Improving Subjective and Eudaimonic Well-Being in Healthy Individuals: A Randomized Controlled Trial. Front. Psychol. 12:700916. doi: 10.3389/fpsyg.2021.700916

 

Objectives: Better subjective and eudaimonic well-being fosters better health conditions. Several studies have confirmed that mindfulness-based interventions are effective for improving well-being; however, the samples examined in these studies have been limited to specific populations, and the studies only measured certain aspects of well-being rather than the entire construct. Additionally, few studies have examined the effect of mindfulness-based cognitive therapy on well-being. The present study examines the feasibility of mindfulness-based cognitive therapy and its effectiveness for improving subjective and eudaimonic well-being among community residents.

Methods: The study design featured an 8-week randomized, waiting-list controlled, parallel-group study. 8 weekly mindfulness classes, followed by 2 monthly classes, were provided for healthy individuals aged 20–65 years who had a Satisfaction with Life Scale score of ≤ 24 indicating average to low cognitive aspect of subjective well-being. This trial was registered with the University Hospital Medical Information Network Clinical Trials Registry (ID: UMIN000031885, URL: https://upload.umin.ac.jp/cgi-open-bin/ctr_e/ctr_view.cgi?recptno=R000036376).

Results: The results showed that cognitive aspect of subjective well-being and mindfulness skills were significantly improved at 8 weeks, and this effect was enhanced up to the end of the follow-up period. Positive affective aspect of subjective and eudaimonic well-being were significantly improved at 16 weeks.

Conclusions: Eight weeks of mindfulness-based cognitive therapy with a 2-month follow-up period improves cognitive and affective aspects of subjective and eudaimonic well-being in healthy individuals. The order of improvement was cognitive, positive affective, and eudaimonic well-being. To verify these findings, multi-center randomized controlled trials with active control groups and longer follow-up periods are warranted.

https://www.frontiersin.org/articles/10.3389/fpsyg.2021.700916/full?utm_source=F-AAE&utm_medium=EMLF&utm_campaign=MRK_1714167_a0P58000000G0YfEAK_Psycho_20210831_arts_A

 

Mindfulness Improve Social Media Control While Social Media Control Improves Mindfulness

Mindfulness Improve Social Media Control While Social Media Control Improves Mindfulness

 

By John M. de Castro, Ph.D.

 

“social media overuse is increasingly commonplace today, and it may have some serious repercussions to your physical and mental health.” – Kristeen Cherney

 

Over the last few decades, the internet has gone from a rare curiosity to the dominant mode of electronic communications. In fact, it has become a dominant force in daily life, occupying large amounts of time and attention. As useful as the internet may be, it can also produce negative consequences. “Problematic Internet Use” is now considered a behavioral addiction, with almost half of participants in one study considered “Internet addicts”, developing greater levels of “tolerance” and experiencing “withdrawal” and distress when deprived. This phenomenon is so new that there is little understanding of its nature, causes, and consequences and how to treat it.

 

Mindfulness training has been shown to be helpful with each of the components of addictions, decreasing cravingsimpulsiveness, and psychological and physiological responses to stress, and increasing emotion regulation.  It is no wonder then that mindfulness training has been found to be effective for the treatment of a variety of addictions. It also has been found to be helpful in overcoming internet and smartphone addictions. But there is a need to further explore the effectiveness of mindfulness training on one form of internet addiction, social media addiction.

 

In today’s Research News article “The reciprocal relationships between social media self-control failure, mindfulness and wellbeing: A longitudinal study.” (See summary below or view the full text of the study at: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8336798/ ) Du and colleagues recruited participants online between the ages of 16 to 60 years of age and had them complete measures of social media control, mindfulness, well-being, and life satisfaction. They completed the measures three times at four-month intervals.

 

They found that the higher the levels of mindfulness at all measurements the higher the levels of social media control, well-being, and life satisfaction at all measurements. They also found evidence that social media control at the first measurement was associated with better mindfulness at the second measurement which was, in turn, associated with better social media control at the third measurement.

 

These results are correlative and as such caution must be exercised in interpreting causation. But mindfulness training has been found in prior research to reduce internet addictions. In addition, the associations found between variables and other variables 4 months later prohibit a reverse causation explanation. So, the associations reported here may well be due to causal connections. Hence, it could be tentatively concluded that being able to control participation in social media improves mindfulness and mindfulness improves the individual’s ability to control their participation in social media.

 

This is potentially important as participation in social media often gets out of control to the point where it interferes in everyday activities to the detriment of the individual. It can even become an addiction. That being mindful can help keep it under control may be very helpful allowing attention to other life activities. Although it was not explored in the present study this suggests that mindfulness training may help make the individual resistant to losing control of participation in social media.

 

So, mindfulness improve social media control while social media control improves mindfulness.

 

Social media addiction is becoming an increasing problem. . . One cure is mindfulness meditation. . . a powerful tool for kicking addictions ranging from drugs, to social media” – Elise Bialylew

 

CMCS – Center for Mindfulness and Contemplative Studies

 

This and other Contemplative Studies posts are also available on Google+ https://plus.google.com/106784388191201299496/posts and on Twitter @MindfulResearch

 

Study Summary

 

Du, J., Kerkhof, P., & van Koningsbruggen, G. M. (2021). The reciprocal relationships between social media self-control failure, mindfulness and wellbeing: A longitudinal study. PloS one, 16(8), e0255648. https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0255648

 

Abstract

This paper aims to shed light on the question whether, and how, social media self-control failure is related to mindfulness and wellbeing. Using a 3-wave longitudinal design, the present study among 594 daily social media users examined the reciprocal relationships between social media self-control failure and mindfulness, and between social media self-control failure and wellbeing (as assessed by subjective vitality and life satisfaction). Results of the random-intercept cross-lagged panel model showed that social media self-control failure has a time-invariant negative association with mindfulness and subjective vitality. No full reciprocal influence was found between social media self-control failure and mindfulness, yet part of this trajectory was observed, suggesting that social media self-control failure could impair mindfulness, which, in turn, might increase future social media self-control failure. For wellbeing, life satisfaction was found to predict subsequent drops in social media self-control failure.

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8336798/

 

Improve Health Outcomes in Women on Long-Term Sick Leave with Mindfulness

Improve Health Outcomes in Women on Long-Term Sick Leave with Mindfulness

 

By John M. de Castro, Ph.D.

 

“Since stress compromises our immune system, becoming caught up in this way can slow down our recovery. Instead, aim to approach your illness with care, seeing things as they are, with acceptance and compassion.” — Mark Bertin

 

Chronic Pain and mental health issues are the most common causes of long-term sick leave. At least 100 million adult Americans have chronic pain conditions. The most common treatment for chronic pain is drugs. These include over-the-counter analgesics and opioids. But opioids are dangerous and highly addictive. So, there is a great need to find safe and effective ways to lower the psychological distress and improve the individual’s ability to cope with the pain. There is an accumulating volume of research findings that demonstrate that mindfulness practices, in general, are effective in treating pain.

 

Depression affects over 6% of the population. Depression can be difficult to treat. It is usually treated with antidepressant medication. But, of patients treated initially with drugs only about a third attained remission of the depression. Even after remission there are a number of symptoms that remain. These include lingering dysphoria, impaired psychosocial functioning, fatigue, and decreased ability to work. These residual symptoms can lead to relapse. Mindfulness training is also an alternative treatment for depression. It has been shown to be an effective treatment for depression and its recurrence and even in the cases where drugs fail.

 

Anxiety disorders are the most common mental illness in the United States, affecting 40 million adults, or 18% of the population. A characterizing feature of anxiety disorders is that the suffer overly identifies with and personalizes their thoughts. The sufferer has recurring thoughts, such as impending disaster, that they may realize are unreasonable, but are unable to shake. Anxiety disorders have generally been treated with drugs. But there are considerable side effects, and these drugs are often abused. Recently, it has been found that mindfulness training can be effective for anxiety disorders.

 

A therapeutic technique that contains mindfulness training and Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) is Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT). It focuses on the individual’s thoughts, feelings, and behavior and how they interact to impact their psychological and physical well-being. It then works to change thinking to alter the interaction and produce greater life satisfaction. ACT employs mindfulness practices to increase awareness and develop an attitude of acceptance and compassion in the presence of painful thoughts and feelings. ACT teaches individuals to “just notice”, accept and embrace private experiences and focus on behavioral responses that produce more desirable outcomes. This suggests that ACT may be an effective treatment for women who are on long-term sick leave.

 

In today’s Research News article “Comparing the Efficacy of Multidisciplinary Assessment and Treatment, or Acceptance and Commitment Therapy, with Treatment as Usual on Health Outcomes in Women on Long-Term Sick Leave-A Randomised Controlled Trial.” (See summary below or view the full text of the study at: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7916944/ ) Finnes and colleagues recruited working age women who were on long-term sick leave and randomly assigned them to receive either treatment as usual, Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT), or ACT in combination with a multidisciplinary team consisting of a physician, a psychologist, an occupational therapist and a social worker. They were measured before and after treatment and at 6 and 12 months after treatment for sick leave, satisfaction with treatment, pain, anxiety, depression, satisfaction with life, and general health well-being.

 

They found that there were no significant differences between Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT), or ACT plus team with the women’s satisfaction with treatment. But in comparison to baseline and the treatment as usual group, both treatments produced significant reductions in anxiety, depression, pain intensity and significant increases in satisfaction with life, and general health well-being. At one year after treatment the ACT plus team group had significantly more patients classified as recovered than the ACT alone group.

 

These results demonstrate that Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT) is effective in treating the physical and psychological symptoms of women who were on long-term sick leave. Women on long-term sick leave are very difficult to treat as their issues have resisted improvement for a substantial period of time. So, the ability of ACT to improve these symptoms is impressive. Adding the team produced slightly better outcomes at 12 months but the additional cost of the team is quite significant. So, from a cost effectiveness standpoint, ACT alone is superior.

 

So, improve health outcomes in women on long-term sick leave with mindfulness.

 

Musculoskeletal pain, depression, and anxiety cause the majority of all sick leave. . . Interestingly enough, mindfulness has become an important construct in return-to-work rehabilitation.” – Emily Lipinski

 

CMCS – Center for Mindfulness and Contemplative Studies

 

This and other Contemplative Studies posts are also available on Google+ https://plus.google.com/106784388191201299496/posts and on Twitter @MindfulResearch

 

Study Summary

 

Finnes, A., Anderzén, I., Pingel, R., Dahl, J., Molin, L., & Lytsy, P. (2021). Comparing the Efficacy of Multidisciplinary Assessment and Treatment, or Acceptance and Commitment Therapy, with Treatment as Usual on Health Outcomes in Women on Long-Term Sick Leave-A Randomised Controlled Trial. International journal of environmental research and public health, 18(4), 1754. https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph18041754

 

Abstract

Background: Chronic pain and mental disorders are common reasons for long term sick leave. The study objective was to evaluate the efficacy of a multidisciplinary assessment and treatment program including acceptance and commitment therapy (TEAM) and stand-alone acceptance and commitment therapy (ACT), compared with treatment as usual (Control) on health outcomes in women on long-term sick leave. Method: Participants (n = 308), women of working age on long term sick leave due to musculoskeletal pain and/or common mental disorders, were randomized to TEAM (n = 102), ACT (n = 102) or Control (n = 104). Participants in the multidisciplinary assessment treatment program received ACT, but also medical assessment, occupational therapy and social counselling. The second intervention included ACT only. Health outcomes were assessed over 12 months using adjusted linear mixed models. The results showed significant interaction effects for both ACT and TEAM compared with Control in anxiety (ACT [p < 0.05]; TEAM [p < 0.001]), depression (ACT [p < 0.001]; TEAM [p < 0.001]) and general well-being (ACT [p < 0.05]; TEAM [p < 0.001]). For self-rated pain, there was a significant interaction effect in favour of ACT (p < 0.05), and for satisfaction with life in favour of TEAM (p < 0.001). Conclusion: Both ACT alone and multidisciplinary assessment and treatment including ACT were superior to treatment as usual in clinical outcomes.

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7916944/

 

Improve the Psychological Well-Being of Medical Students with Mindfulness

Improve the Psychological Well-Being of Medical Students with Mindfulness

 

By John M. de Castro, Ph.D.

 

Medical students are being trained to have 100 things on their mind at all times. It’s harder and harder to focus on one thing explicitly. [Mindfulness] gives you that skill to know that you can focus on everything at once, but when you need to focus on one thing, you can be present with it.” – Chloe Zimmerman

 

Stress is epidemic in the western workplace with almost two thirds of workers reporting high levels of stress at work. In high stress occupations, like healthcare, burnout is all too prevalent. Burnout is the fatigue, cynicism, emotional exhaustion, sleep disruption, and professional inefficacy that comes with work-related stress. It is estimated that over 45% of healthcare workers experience burnout. Currently, over a third of healthcare workers report that they are looking for a new job. It not only affects the healthcare providers personally, but also the patients, as it produces a loss of empathy and compassion. Burnout, in fact, it is a threat to the entire healthcare system as it contributes to the shortage of doctors and nurses.

 

Preventing burnout has to be a priority. Contemplative practices have been shown to reduce the psychological and physiological responses to stress. Indeed, mindfulness has been shown to be helpful in treating and preventing burnoutincreasing resilience, and improving sleep. It would be best to provide techniques to combat burnout early in a medical career. Studying medicine can be extremely stressful and many students show distress and express burnout symptoms. The undergraduate medical student level may be an ideal time to intervene.

 

In today’s Research News article “Mindfulness-based stress reduction for medical students: a narrative review.” (See summary below or view the full text of the study at: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8105581/ )  Polle and colleagues review and summarize the published research on the effectiveness of the Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction (MBSR) program to improve the psychological well-being of undergraduate medical students. MBSR includes training in meditation, body scan, and yoga, and group discussions normally over an 8-week period. They identified 9 published studies.

 

They report that the published research found that Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction (MBSR) produced significant increases in undergraduate medical students mood, mental health, satisfaction with life, and self-compassion and significant reductions in psychological distress, perceived stress, and depression. One study followed up these students 6 years later and found persisting effects of MBSR.

 

The published research paints a clear picture that participating in a Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction (MBSR) program produces lasting benefits for the psychological health of undergraduate medical students. This is important as stress and burnout is prevalent in the medical professions and intervening early may prevent or ameliorate future problems. Incorporation of MBSR into the undergraduate medical curriculum should be considered.

 

So, improve the psychological well-being of medical students with mindfulness.

 

in medical students, higher empathy, lower anxiety, and fewer depression symptoms have been reported by students after participating in MSBR. In summary, mindfulness meditation may be used to elicit positive emotions, minimize negative affect and rumination, and enable effective emotion regulation.”- Michael Minichiello

 

CMCS – Center for Mindfulness and Contemplative Studies

 

This and other Contemplative Studies posts are also available on Google+ https://plus.google.com/106784388191201299496/posts and on Twitter @MindfulResearch

 

Study Summary

 

Polle, E., & Gair, J. (2021). Mindfulness-based stress reduction for medical students: a narrative review. Canadian medical education journal, 12(2), e74–e80. https://doi.org/10.36834/cmej.68406

 

Abstract

Background

Medical students are at high risk of depression, distress and burnout, which may adversely affect patient safety. There has been growing interest in mindfulness in medical education to improve medical student well-being. Mindfulness-based stress reduction (MBSR) is a commonly used, standardized format for teaching mindfulness skills. Previous research has suggested that MBSR may be of particular benefit for medical students. This narrative review aims to further investigate the benefits of MBSR for undergraduate medical students.

Methods

A search of the literature was performed using MedLine, Embase, ERIC, PSYCInfo, and CINAHL to identify relevant studies. A total of 102 papers were identified with this search. After review and application of inclusion and exclusion criteria, nine papers were included in the study.

Results

MBSR training for medical students was associated with increased measures of psychological well-being and self-compassion, as well as improvements in stress, psychological distress and mood. Evidence for effect on empathy was mixed, and the single paper measuring burnout showed no effect. Two studies identified qualitative themes which provided context for the quantitative results.

Conclusions

MBSR benefits medical student well-being and decreases medical student psychological distress and depression.

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8105581/

 

Improve Psychological Well-Being in Patients with Fever Undergoing Covid-19 Screening with Mindfulness

Improve Psychological Well-Being in Patients with Fever Undergoing Covid-19 Screening with Mindfulness

 

By John M. de Castro, Ph.D.

 

“Mindfulness-based approaches appear well-suited to deal with the challenges presented by the time of unpresented uncertainty, change, and loss, which can take many forms in the context of COVID-19 pandemic.” – Elena Antonova

 

Mindfulness training has been shown to improve health and well-being in healthy individuals. It has also been found to be effective for a large array of medical and psychiatric conditions, either stand-alone or in combination with more traditional therapies. One of the primary effects of mindfulness that may be responsible for many of its benefits is that it improves the physiological and psychological responses to stress. The COVID-19 pandemic is extremely stressful particularly for patients running a fever and being screened for Covid-19.  So, mindfulness, because of its ability to improve stress responding, may be helpful in coping with the mental challenges of awaiting COVID-19 test results.

 

In today’s Research News article “Using Mindfulness to Reduce Anxiety and Depression of Patients With Fever Undergoing Screening in an Isolation Ward During the COVID-19 Outbreak.” (See summary below or view the full text of the study at: https://www.frontiersin.org/articles/10.3389/fpsyg.2021.664964/full?utm_source=F-AAE&utm_medium=EMLF&utm_campaign=MRK_1651992_69_Psycho_20210603_arts_A )  Liu and colleagues recruited adult patients who had a fever and were undergoing screening in a hospital for Covid-19. They were randomly assigned either to no-treatment or a very brief (25 minute) mindfulness instruction while awaiting test results. They were measured at the time of admissions and again just before test results for positive and negative emotions, distress, satisfaction with life, anger, anxiety, and depression.

 

They found that in comparison to baseline and the no-treatment controls, the participants who had received brief mindfulness instruction had significantly lower anger, distress, anxiety, depression, and need for help and higher satisfaction with life. Hence, the brief mindfulness instruction improved the mood and psychological well-being of these patients during a very stressful time of awaiting Covid-19 test results.

 

Mindfulness has been previously found to be effective in reducing anger, distress, anxiety, and depression, and increasing satisfaction with life. What the present study demonstrates is that these benefits can occur after a very brief instruction for patients in a very stressful situation. This suggests that brief mindfulness instruction should be incorporated into the routine treatment of patients under high short-term stress.

 

So, improve psychological well-being in patients with fever undergoing Covid-19 screening with mindfulness.

 

mindfulness is an increasingly accessible intervention available world-wide that may reduce psychological distress during this isolating public health crisis.” – Susan Farris

 

CMCS – Center for Mindfulness and Contemplative Studies

 

This and other Contemplative Studies posts are also available on Google+ https://plus.google.com/106784388191201299496/posts and on Twitter @MindfulResearch

 

Study Summary

 

Liu Y, Huyang S, Tan H, He Y, Zhou J, Li X, Ye M, Huang J and Wu D (2021) Using Mindfulness to Reduce Anxiety and Depression of Patients With Fever Undergoing Screening in an Isolation Ward During the COVID-19 Outbreak. Front. Psychol. 12:664964. doi: 10.3389/fpsyg.2021.664964

 

The coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) continues to spread globally. This infectious disease affects people not only physically but also psychologically. Therefore, an effective psychological intervention program needs to be developed to improve the psychological condition of patients screened for fever during this period. This study aimed to investigate the effect of a brief mindfulness intervention on patients with suspected fever in a screening isolation ward awaiting results of the COVID-19 test. The Faces Scale and the Emotional Thermometer Tool were used to investigate 51 patients who were randomly divided into an intervention group and a control group. All patients completed self-rating questionnaires online at the time they entered the isolation ward and before they were informed of the results. The intervention group listened to the mindfulness audios through hospital broadcasts in the isolation ward before their lunch break and while they slept. Compared with the control group, the intervention group’s life satisfaction score increased (F = 4.02, p = 0.051) and the emotional thermometer score decreased (F = 8.89, p = 0.005). The anxiety scores (F = 9.63, p = 0.003) and the needing help scores decreased significantly (F = 4.95, p = 0.031). Distress (F = 1.41, p = 0.241), depression (F = 1.93, p = 0.171), and anger (F = 3.14, p = 0.083) also decreased, but did not reach significance. Brief mindfulness interventions can alleviate negative emotions and improve the life satisfaction of patients in the isolation ward who were screened for COVID-19 during the waiting period.

https://www.frontiersin.org/articles/10.3389/fpsyg.2021.664964/full?utm_source=F-AAE&utm_medium=EMLF&utm_campaign=MRK_1651992_69_Psycho_20210603_arts_A

 

Mindfulness Promotes Life Satisfaction by Increasing Gratitude and Savoring of Positive Experiences

 

Mindfulness Promotes Life Satisfaction by Increasing Gratitude and Savoring of Positive Experiences

 

By John M. de Castro, Ph.D.

 

savoring . . . is pretty powerful: it can lead to better mental health and relationships, among many other benefits.” – Magdalena Puniewska

 

Mindfulness training has been shown to be effective in improving physical and psychological health. This has led to an increasing adoption of mindfulness techniques for the health and well-being of both healthy and ill individuals. Mindfulness, however, is a complex concept that contains attentional processes, non-judgmental awareness, non-reactivity to the environment, gratitude, and a savoring of the present moment. It is not known if mindfulness’ promotion of savoring and gratitude may be responsible for some of its beneficial effects.

 

In today’s Research News article “Is Mindfulness Linked to Life Satisfaction? Testing Savoring Positive Experiences and Gratitude as Mediators.” (See summary below or view the full text of the study at: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7965977/ )  Cheung and Lau recruited adult Chinese mindfulness practitioners and had them complete measures of mindfulness, savoring positive experiences, gratitude, and life satisfaction. Their responses were subjected to regression analysis and linear structural modelling.

 

The regression analysis revealed that the higher the levels of mindfulness the higher the levels of gratitude, and life satisfaction, and savoring, including savoring anticipation, savoring the moment, savoring reminiscing, and the higher the levels of savoring the higher the levels of gratitude, and life satisfaction. Modelling revealed that mindfulness was only indirectly related to life satisfaction as a result of its associations with savoring of positive experiences and gratitude which in turn were associated with increases in life satisfaction.

 

These results are correlational and as such causation cannot be determined. But mindfulness training has been shown in prior research to increase savoring, gratitude, and life satisfaction. So, the relationships observed in the present study likely result from causal relationships. The present study contributes to knowledge by finding that mindfulness improves savoring and gratitude and these in turn increase satisfaction with life.

 

In other words, mindfulness increases the savoring of positive experiences and this leads to more positive feelings about life. Mindfulness also increases being thankful for what one has and this too leads to greater positive feelings about life. These increases in savoring and gratitude may be how mindfulness produces many of its benefits for the psychological well-being of the individual.

 

So, mindfulness promotes life satisfaction by increasing gratitude and savoring of positive experiences.

 

“Like mindfulness, savoring is another way to exercise being present, but it takes things a step further. Mindfulness asks you to observe the present moment without judging it and then let go of it. Whereas with savoring, you observe a specific type of moment, a positive one, and then you try to cling onto it and not let it go.” – Fred Bryant

 

CMCS – Center for Mindfulness and Contemplative Studies

 

This and other Contemplative Studies posts are also available on Google+ https://plus.google.com/106784388191201299496/posts and on Twitter @MindfulResearch

 

Study Summary

 

Cheung, R., & Lau, E. N. (2021). Is Mindfulness Linked to Life Satisfaction? Testing Savoring Positive Experiences and Gratitude as Mediators. Frontiers in psychology, 12, 591103. https://doi.org/10.3389/fpsyg.2021.591103

 

Abstract

Grounded in Mindfulness-to-Meaning Theory, this study examined the relation between dispositional mindfulness and life satisfaction through mediating mechanisms including savoring positive experiences and gratitude. A total of 133 Chinese mindfulness practitioners at 20–72 years old were recruited from a 3-day transnational meditation event in Hong Kong. Findings based on structural equation modeling indicated that controlling for sex, age, education, family income, number of hours of mindfulness practice per week, and type of administration, dispositional mindfulness was associated with satisfaction with life through savoring positive experiences and gratitude as mediators. The findings provided initial evidence for these processes between mindfulness and life satisfaction in the Chinese context. To promote life satisfaction, researchers and mental health practitioners should recognize the chain of mechanisms related to mindfulness.

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7965977/