The Mindfulness Manifold: Exploring How Self-Preoccupation, Self-Compassion, and Self-Transcendence Translate Mindfulness Into Positive Psychological Outcomes
In a correlational study (n = 670) using exploratory and confirmatory factor analysis as well as path analysis, evidence for a mindfulness manifold reaching from self-awareness all the way to psychological outcomes was uncovered. Factor analysis of a large number of mindfulness and mindfulness-related scales yielded five interrelated, interpretable factors, subsumed under three aspects of mindfulness derived from a common-denominator model (Vigo & Silbersweig’s S-ART model): (a) self-awareness, with the two factors of reflective awareness and controlled sense-of-self in the moment; (b) self-regulation, with the two factors of self-preoccupation and self-compassion; and (c) self-transcendence. In a mediational structural-equation model testing the hypothesis of a flow of influence from self-awareness over self-regulation to self-transcendence, self-awareness was indeed found to influence self-regulation; self-regulation mediated part of the effects of self-awareness on self-transcendence. In turn, self-preoccupation, self-compassion, and self-transcendence, as well as controlled sense-of-self in the moment, alleviated negative emotional states (stress, depression, and anxiety) and had a positive influence on psychological well-being. The results elucidate that self-regulation and self-transcendence are (some of) the mechanisms through which the effects of self-awareness are translated into beneficial psychological outcomes.
KeywordsMindfulness manifold Positive psychological outcomes Self-transcendence
I would like to thank Shelley Aikman for her vital comments on this paper.
Compliance with Ethical Standards
Conflict of Interest
The author declares that he has no conflict of interest.
Research Involving Human Participants
All procedures performed in studies involving human participants were in accordance with the ethical standards of the institutional research committee at the Georgia Institute of Technology and with the 1964 Helsinki declaration and its later amendments or comparable ethical standards.
Informed consent was obtained from all individual participants included in the study.
- Baer, R. A. (2003). Mindfulness training as a clinical intervention: A conceptual and empirical review. Clinical Psychology: Science and Practice, 10, 125–143.Google Scholar
- Bishop, S. R., Lau, M. A., Shapiro, S. L., Carlson, L., Anderson, N. D., Carmody, J., et al. (2004). Mindfulness: A proposed operational definition. Clinical. Psychology, 11, 230–241.Google Scholar
- Cohen, J. (1988). Statistical power analyses for the social sciences. Hillsdale: Erlbaum.Google Scholar
- Gross, J. J., & Thompson, R. A. (2007). Emotion regulation: Conceptual foundations. In J. J. Gross (Ed.), Handbook of emotion regulation (pp. 3–24). New York: Guilford Press.Google Scholar
- Kline, R. B. (2013). Exploratory and confirmatory factor analysis. In Y. Petscher & C. Schatsschneider (Eds.), Applied quantitative analysis in the social sciences (pp. 171–207). New York: Routledge.Google Scholar
- Ozawa-de Silva, B., Dodson-Lavelle, B., Raison, C., & Negi, L. T. (2012). Compassion and ethics: Scientific and practical approaches to the cultivation of compassion as a foundation for ethical subjectivity and well-being. Journal of Healthcare, Science and the Humanities, 2, 145–161.Google Scholar
- Segal, Z. V., Williams, J. M. G., & Teasdale, J. D. (2013). Mindfulness-based cognitive therapy for depression (2nd ed.). New York: Guilford.Google Scholar
- Soler, J., Cebolla, A., Feliu-Soler, A., Demarzo, M. M., Pascual, J. C., Baños, R., & García-Campayo, J. (2014). Relationship between meditative practice and self-reported mindfulness: The MINDSENS composite index. PLoS One, 9.Google Scholar
- Vago, D. R., & Silbersweig, D. A. (2012). Self-awareness, self-regulation, and self-transcendence (S-ART): A framework for understanding the neurobiological mechanisms of mindfulness. Frontiers in Human Neuroscience, 6.Google Scholar