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Mindfulness (N Y). 2016 Apr 1;7(2):527-541. Epub 2016 Jan 9.

Dispositional Mindfulness Uncouples Physiological and Emotional Reactivity to a Laboratory Stressor and Emotional Reactivity to Executive Functioning Lapses in Daily Life.

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Simmons College.
University of Pennsylvania Perelman School of Medicine.


Both dispositional mindfulness and mindfulness training may help to uncouple the degree to which distress is experienced in response to aversive internal experience and external events. Because emotional reactivity is a transdiagnostic process implicated in numerous psychological disorders, dispositional mindfulness and mindfulness training could exert mental health benefits, in part, by buffering emotional reactivity. The present studies examine whether dispositional mindfulness moderates two understudied processes in stress reactivity research: the degree of concordance between subjective and physiological reactivity to a laboratory stressor (Study 1); and the degree of dysphoric mood reactivity to lapses in executive functioning in daily life (Study 2). In both studies, lower emotional reactivity to aversive experiences was observed among individuals scoring higher in mindfulness, particularly non-judging, relative to those scoring lower in mindfulness. These findings support the hypothesis that higher dispositional mindfulness fosters lower emotional reactivity. Results are discussed in terms of implications for applying mindfulness-based interventions to a range of psychological disorders in which people have difficulty regulating emotional reactions to stress.


Emotional Reactivity; Executive Functioning; Mindfulness; Physiological Arousal

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