Cultivating mindfulness: effects on well-being

J Clin Psychol. 2008 Jul;64(7):840-62. doi: 10.1002/jclp.20491.


There has been great interest in determining if mindfulness can be cultivated and if this cultivation leads to well-being. The current study offers preliminary evidence that at least one aspect of mindfulness, measured by the Mindful Attention and Awareness Scale (MAAS; K. W. Brown & R. M. Ryan, 2003), can be cultivated and does mediate positive outcomes. Further, adherence to the practices taught during the meditation-based interventions predicted positive outcomes. College undergraduates were randomly allocated between training in two distinct meditation-based interventions, Mindfulness Based Stress Reduction (MBSR; J. Kabat-Zinn, 1990; n=15) and E. Easwaran's (1978/1991) Eight Point Program (EPP; n=14), or a waitlist control (n=15). Pretest, posttest, and 8-week follow-up data were gathered on self-report outcome measures. Compared to controls, participants in both treatment groups (n=29) demonstrated increases in mindfulness at 8-week follow-up. Further, increases in mindfulness mediated reductions in perceived stress and rumination. These results suggest that distinct meditation-based practices can increase mindfulness as measured by the MAAS, which may partly mediate benefits. Implications and future directions are discussed.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study
  • Randomized Controlled Trial
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adaptation, Psychological
  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Attention*
  • Attitude
  • Awareness*
  • Control Groups
  • Female
  • Follow-Up Studies
  • Humans
  • Intention
  • Male
  • Medical Records
  • Meditation / methods*
  • Models, Psychological
  • Patient Compliance
  • Personality Inventory
  • Psychometrics
  • Quality of Life
  • Stress, Psychological / psychology
  • Stress, Psychological / therapy*
  • Thinking
  • Treatment Outcome
  • Waiting Lists