Problem solving and affect as mechanisms linking daily mindfulness to task performance and job satisfaction

Stress Health. 2020 Aug;36(3):338-349. doi: 10.1002/smi.2931. Epub 2020 Feb 19.


This study investigated the daily relationships between mindfulness and job satisfaction via affect and mindfulness and task performance via problem solving confidence. Participants were 57 full-time and part-time employees who completed a baseline survey and five daily diary entries. Data were analysed using multilevel modelling. On days when they experienced greater mindfulness, employees also experienced (a) greater daily job satisfaction via high-activation positive affect (but not low-activation positive affect nor negative affect) and (b) greater daily self-reported task performance via problem solving confidence. Our findings suggest that high-activation positive affect and problem solving confidence may be important daily mechanisms of mindfulness at work. Growing evidence links mindfulness to work-related outcomes; however, limited research has investigated the mechanisms involved. The present study is one of the first to collect empirical observations regarding how state mindfulness operates at work on a daily basis, providing support for both affective and cognitive pathways. Advances in this area can underpin a robust theoretical framework to guide the implementation of daily mindfulness practice and interventions targeting specific work-related outcomes.

Keywords: job satisfaction; mindfulness; problem solving confidence; task performance.

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Affect
  • Employment / psychology*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Job Satisfaction*
  • Male
  • Mindfulness*
  • Problem Solving*
  • Surveys and Questionnaires
  • Task Performance and Analysis