Mindfulness

, Volume 3, Issue 4, pp 275–281 | Cite as

Mindfulness: Seeking a More Perfect Approach to Coping with Life’s Challenges

  • Corina Hinterman
  • Lawrence Burns
  • Danielle Hopwood
  • William Rogers
ORIGINAL PAPER

Abstract

This is a preliminary investigation of the role mindfulness plays in relation to cognitive coping strategies in healthy and dysfunctional forms of perfectionism. It was our hypothesis that higher levels of positive perfectionism would be associated with increased mindfulness, self-esteem, and satisfaction with life. The present study used hierarchical regression and correlational designs with a sample of 232 male and female college students. Results suggest that mindfulness has a significant effect in the prediction of positive and negative perfectionism and life satisfaction. Correlational findings indicate significant positive correlations between high levels of mindfulness, self-esteem, proactive coping, and high satisfaction with life. Furthermore, findings demonstrate a significant correlation between lack of mindfulness, negative perfectionism, depression, and rumination. This study provides a plausible argument for the potential importance and benefits of mindfulness in relation to perfectionism and life satisfaction. Further research should investigate whether mindfulness could be a useful tool for negative perfectionists to utilize as a means of decreasing depression and thus increasing life satisfaction and self-esteem.

Keywords

Mindfulness Perfectionism Self-esteem Life satisfaction Coping 

Notes

Acknowledgment

We would like to thank Dan Francis and Jackie Chavarria for their help with the project, including data collection.

References

  1. Alfonso, V. C., Allison, D. B., & Rader, D. E. (1996). The extended satisfaction with life scale: Development and psychometric properties. Social Indicators Research, 38, 275–301.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  2. Argus, G., & Thompson, M. (2008). Perceived social problem solving, perfectionism, and mindful awareness in clinical depression: An exploratory study. Cognitive Therapy and Research, 32, 745–757.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. Baer, R. A., Smith, G. T., & Allen, K. B. (2004). Assessment of mindfulness by self-report the Kentucky inventory of mindfulness skills. Assessment, 11(3), 191–206.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. Baumeister, R. F., & Tice, D. M. (1985). Self-esteem and responses to success and failure: subsequent performance and intrinsic motivation. Journal of Personality, 53, 450–467.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  5. Besharat, M. A. (2003). Parental perfectionism and children’s test anxiety. Psychological Reports, 93, 1049–1055.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  6. Besharat, M. A. (2009). Reliability and factor validity of a Farsi version of the positive and negative perfectionism scale. Psychological Reports, 105, 99–110.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  7. Blankstein, K. R., Flett, G. L., Hewitt, P. L., & Eng, A. (1993). Dimensions of perfectionism and irrational fears: an examination with the fear survey schedule. Personality and Individual Differences, 15, 323–328.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  8. Borynski, M. L. (2006). Clarifying the construct of mindfulness and its relationship to neuroticism. (Doctoral Dissertation). Retrieved from Central Michigan University, 144649338.Google Scholar
  9. Broderick, P. C. (2005). Mindfulness and coping with dysphoric mood: Contrasts with rumination and distraction. Cognitive Therapy and Research, 29, 501–510.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  10. Brown, K. W., & Ryan, R. M. (2004). Fostering healthy self-regulation from within and without: A Self-Determination Theory perspective. In A. Linley & S. Joseph (Eds.), Positive psychology in practice (pp. 105–124). Hoboken, NJ: Wiley.Google Scholar
  11. Burns, L. R., & Fedewa, B. A. (2005). Cognitive styles: Links with perfectionistic thinking. Personality and Individual Differences, 38, 103–113.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  12. Burns, L. R., Dittmann, K., Nguyen, N. L., & Mitchelson, J. K. (2000). Academic procrastination, perfectionism, and control: Associations with vigilant and avoidant coping. Journal of Social Behavior and Personality, 15, 23–46.Google Scholar
  13. Chan, C. K. Y., & Owens, R. G. (2006). Perfectionism and eating disorder symptomatology in Chinese immigrants: Mediating and moderating effects of ethnic identity and acculturation. Psychology & Health, 21, 49–63.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  14. Christopher, M. S., & Gilbert, B. D. (2010). Incremental validity of components of mindfulness in the prediction of satisfaction with life and depression. Current Psychology, 29, 10–23.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  15. Costello, C. G., & Comrey, A. L. (1967). Scales for measuring depression and anxiety. Journal of Psychology, 66, 303–313.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  16. Crane, C., & Williams, J. M. G. (2010). Factors associated with attrition from mindfulness-based cognitive therapy in patients with a history of suicidal depression. Mindfulness, 1, 10–20.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  17. Di Paula, A., & Campbell, J. D. (2002). Self-esteem and persistence in the face of failure. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 3, 711–724.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  18. Dunkley, D. M., Zuroff, D. C., & Blankstein, K. R. (2003). Self-critical perfectionism and daily affect: Dispositional and situational influences on stress and coping. Jounral of Personality and Social Psychology, 48, 234–252.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  19. Erskine, J. A. K., Kvavilashvili, L., & Kornbrot, D. E. (2007). The predictors of thought suppression in young and old adults: Effects of rumination, anxiety, and other variables. Personality and Individual Differences, 42, 1047–1057.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  20. Frost, R. O., Marten, P., Lahart, C., & Rosenblat, R. (1990). The dimensions of perfectionism. Cognitive Therapy and Research, 14, 449–468.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  21. Greenglass, E., Schwarzer, R., Jakubiec, D., Fiksenbaum, L., & Taubert, S. (1999). The Proactive coping inventory (PCI): A multidimensional research instrument. Paper Presented at the 20th International Conference of the Stress and Anxiety Research Society (STAR), Cracow, Poland, July 12-14.Google Scholar
  22. Greenspon, T. S. (2000). “Healthy perfectionism” is an oxymoron! Journal of Secondary Gifted Education, 11, 197–208.Google Scholar
  23. Hamachek, D. (1978). Psychodynamics of normal and neurotic perfectionism. Psychology: A Journal of Human Behavior, 15(1), 27–33.Google Scholar
  24. Heppner, W. L., & Kernis, M. H. (2008). “Quiet ego” functioning: The complementary roles of mindfulness, authenticity, and secure self-esteem. Psychological Inquiry, 18(4), 248–251.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  25. Hewitt, P. L., & Flett, G. L. (1991). Perfectionism, in the self and social context: Conceptualization, assessment, and association with psychopathology. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 60(3), 456–470.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  26. Hewitt, P. L., & Flett, G. L. (1993). Dimensions of perfectionism, daily stress, and depression: A test of the specific vulnerability hypothesis. Journal of Abnormal Psychology, 102, 58–65.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  27. Hill, R. W., Huelsman, T. J., & Araujo, G. (2010). Perfectionistic concerns suppress associations between perfectionistic strivings and positive life outcomes. Personality and Individual Differences.Google Scholar
  28. Jimenez, S. S., Niles, B. L., & Park, C. L. (2010). A mindfulness model of affect regulation and depressive symptoms: Positive emotions, mood regulation, and self-acceptance as regulatory mechanisms. Personality and Individual Differences, 49, 645–650.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  29. Kilbert, J. J., Langhinrichsen-Rohling, J., & Saito, M. (2005). Adaptive and maladaptive aspects of self-oriented versus socially prescribed perfectionism. Journal of College Student Development, 46, 141–155.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  30. Koivula, N., Hassmén, P., & Fullby, J. (2002). Self-esteem and perfectionism in elite athletes: Effects on competition anxiety and self-confidence. Personality and Individual Differences, 32, 865–875.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  31. Lakey, C. E., Campbell, W. K., Brown, K. W., & Goodie, A. S. (2007). Dispositional mindfulness as a predictor of the severity of gambling outcomes. Personality and Individual Differences, 43, 1698–1710.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  32. Lundh, L. G. (2004). Perfectionism and acceptance. Journal of Rational-Emotive and Cognitive-Behavior Therapy, 22, 251–265.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  33. Mitchelson, J. K., & Burns, L. R. (1998). Career mothers and perfectionism: Stress at work and at home. Personality and Individual Differences, 25, 477–485.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  34. Nolen-Hoeksema, S., & Marrow, J. (1991). A prospective study of depression and posttraumatic stress symptoms after a natural disaster: the 1989 Loma Prieta earthquake. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 61, 115–121.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  35. Ramel, W., Goldin, P. R., Carmona, P. E., & McQuaid, J. R. (2004). The effects of mindfulness mediation on cognitive processes and affect in patients with past depression. Cognitive Therapy and Research, 28, 433–455.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  36. Rice, K. G., & Lapsley, D. K. (2001). Perfectionism, coping, and emotional adjustment. Journal of College Student Development, 42, 157–168.Google Scholar
  37. Rosenberg, M. (1965). Society and the adolescent self-image. Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press.Google Scholar
  38. Seidah, A., Bouffard, T., & Vezau, C. (2002). Measuring perfectionism: French-Canadian validation of the positive and negative perfectionism scale. Canadian Journal of Behavioral Science, 34, 168–171.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  39. Slade, P. D., & Owens, R. G. (1998). A dual process model of perfectionism based on reinforcement theory. Behavior Modification, 22, 372–390.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  40. Slade, P. D., Coppel, D. B., & Townes, B. D. (2009). Neurocognitive correlates of positive and negative perfectionism. International Journal of Neuroscience, 119, 1741–1754.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  41. Speckens, A. E. M., & Hawton, K. (2005). Social problem solving in adolescents with suicidal behavior: A systematic review. Suicide & Life-Threatening Behavior, 35, 365–387.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  42. Stoeber, J., & Otto, K. (2006). Positive conceptions of perfectionism: Approaches, evidence, challenges. Personality and Social Psychology Review, 10, 295–319.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  43. Terry-Short, L. A., Owens, R. G., Slade, P. D., & Dewey, M. E. (1995). Positive and negative perfectionism. Personality and Individual Differences, 18(5), 663–668.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  44. Weinstein, N., Brown, K. W., & Ryan, R. M. (2009). A multi-method examination of the effects of mindfulness on stress attribution, coping, and emotional well-being. Journal of Research in Personality, 43(3), 374–385.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  45. Williams, J. M. G. (2008). Mindfulness, depression and modes of mind. Cognitive Therapy and Research, 32, 721–733.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  46. Williams, J. M. G., Barnhofer, T., Crane, C., & Beck, A. T. (2005). Problem solving deteriorates following mood challenge in formerly depressed patients with a history of suicidal ideation. Journal of Abnormal Psychology, 114, 421–431.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2012

Authors and Affiliations

  • Corina Hinterman
    • 1
  • Lawrence Burns
    • 1
  • Danielle Hopwood
    • 1
  • William Rogers
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of PsychologyGrand Valley State UniversityAllendaleUSA

Personalised recommendations