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International Publication: Brief mindfulness induction could reduce aggression after depletion (ConCog)

Concog

Our research will be published in May, 2015 in Consciousness and Cognition (Elsevier). 

International Publication: Relating mindfulness and self-control to harm to the self and to others (PAID)

PAID

Our study is published in July 2014, in Personality and Individual Differences (Elsevier). doi: 10.1016/j.paid.2014.02.015

We conducted a web-based study exploring the dynamics of self-reported mindfulness and self-control towards aggression and self-harm. Individuals who deal with intense emotions may ruminate on these emotions, or use thought suppression as an attempt to stop rumination. Because both strategies may paradoxically increase the intensity and frequency of negative emotions, some individuals might then engage in harmful behaviours to distract themselves. In contrast, individuals who mindfully monitor their emotions may be better attuned to when self-control is required before impulsive reactions occur.

As predicted, participants who were more mindful and more self-controlled reported being less aggressive and self-harmless. Bootstrap analyses supported the mediating role of self-control on the association between mindfulness and aggression and self-harm. These findings suggest that people who are naturally predisposed to monitor the “in-the-moment” experience could be less harmful towards themselves and others due partly to their high capacity in self-control.

PhD thesis: Overcoming aggression: Musing on mindfulness and self-control

Across four studies, we investigated the possibility that brief, as opposed to extensive, mindfulness exercise may reduce aggression, and whether this potential effect can be separated from a general mechanism of self-control. The relationships between mindfulness, self-control, and aggression were explored in their dispositional forms (Study 1; N = 241). Then, the effect of brief laboratory inductions of mindfulness was tested following manipulations designed to either bolster (Study 2; N = 99) or weaken (cross-cultural samples: Study 3; N = 119 vs. Study 4; N = 110) the resources of self-control. In addition, the potential roles of individual differences in sensitivity to provocations (SP) and frustrations (SF), and self-harm on aggression were also assessed. Results indicated that the benefit of mindfulness on aggression appears to be more salient when individual’s self-control resource has been taxed, which operates similarly in Western and non-Western settings. This thesis can be downloaded here.

Thesis