, Volume 8, Issue 6, pp 1456–1470 | Cite as

The Mindful Personality: a Meta-analysis from a Cybernetic Perspective

  • Adam W. HanleyEmail author
  • Eric L. Garland


Dispositional mindfulness (DM), or the tendency to attend to present moment experience, may have important implications for the structure of human personality. However, relationships between DM and the Big Five Model of Personality (BF) have not been definitively established. Therefore, the purpose of this meta-analysis was to extend previous investigations of the relationship between DM and the BF, utilizing a larger sample of studies, attending to relational inconsistencies potentially associated with alternative methods of operationalizing DM, conducting the first meta-analysis of the DM subdomains in relation to the BF, and situating the results in a cybernetic model. Results indicate that neuroticism evidenced the strongest, negative relationship with DM and conscientiousness evidenced the strongest, positive relationship with DM, suggesting the mindful personality may be characterized principally by emotional stability and conscientious self-regulation—potentially reflective of an inclination towards the personality metatrait stability. Measurement differences were also observed, with the mindful personality arrived at through the FFMQ differing to some extent from the mindful personality emerging from the MAAS. Broadly, the mindful personality associated with the FFMQ appears to reflect greater personality complexity, with the FFMQ evidencing associations with all five personality factors while the MAAS appears primarily linked with only three personality factors (neuroticism, conscientiousness, and agreeableness). Examination of the relationships between the BF and DM at the facet level also suggests unique patterns of association between the DM facets and each of the personality factors.


Mindfulness Dispositional mindfulness Personality Big Five Theory Cybernetic Big Five Theory 


Compliance with Ethical Standards

Conflict of Interests

Adam Hanley and Eric Garland declare no potential conflicts of interest with respect to the research, authorship, and/or publication of this article.

Eric Garland was supported in the preparation of this manuscript by Grant R34DA037005 from NIDA.


References marked with an asterisk indicate studies included in the meta-analysis

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Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.College of Social WorkUniversity of UtahSalt Lake CityUSA

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