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Keywords:

  • mindfulness;
  • mediation;
  • college mental health;
  • meditation;
  • attention

Abstract

There has been great interest in determining if mindfulness can be cultivated and if this cultivation leads to well-being. The current study offers preliminary evidence that at least one aspect of mindfulness, measured by the Mindful Attention and Awareness Scale (MAAS; K. W. Brown & R. M. Ryan, 2003), can be cultivated and does mediate positive outcomes. Further, adherence to the practices taught during the meditation-based interventions predicted positive outcomes. College undergraduates were randomly allocated between training in two distinct meditation-based interventions, Mindfulness Based Stress Reduction (MBSR; J. Kabat-Zinn, 1990; n=15) and E. Easwaran's (1978/1991) Eight Point Program (EPP; n=14), or a waitlist control (n=15). Pretest, posttest, and 8-week follow-up data were gathered on self-report outcome measures. Compared to controls, participants in both treatment groups (n=29) demonstrated increases in mindfulness at 8-week follow-up. Further, increases in mindfulness mediated reductions in perceived stress and rumination. These results suggest that distinct meditation-based practices can increase mindfulness as measured by the MAAS, which may partly mediate benefits. Implications and future directions are discussed. © 2008 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. J Clin Psychol 64: 1–23, 2008.