A wandering mind is a less caring mind: Daily experience sampling during compassion meditation training

Hooria Jazaieri, Ihno A. Lee, Kelly McGonigal, Thupten Jinpa, James R. Doty, James J. Gross, Philip R Goldin

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

34 Scopus citations

Abstract

Mind wandering, or the tendency for attention to drift to task-irrelevant thoughts, has been associated with worse intra- and inter-personal functioning. Utilizing daily experience sampling with 51 adults during 9-weeks of a compassion meditation program, we examined effects on mind wandering (to neutral, pleasant, and unpleasant topics) and caring behaviors for oneself and others. Results indicated that compassion meditation decreased mind wandering to neutral topics and increased caring behaviors towards oneself. When collapsing across topics, mind wandering did not serve as an intermediary between the frequency of compassion meditation practice and caring behaviors, though mind wandering to pleasant and unpleasant topics was linked to both variables. A path analysis revealed that greater frequency of compassion meditation practice was related to reductions in mind wandering to unpleasant topics and increases in mind wandering to pleasant topics, both of which were related to increases in caring behaviors for oneself and others.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)37-50
Number of pages14
JournalJournal of Positive Psychology
Volume11
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - Jan 2 2016

Keywords

  • attention
  • awareness
  • caring behavior
  • compassion
  • meditation
  • mind wandering

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Psychology(all)

Fingerprint Dive into the research topics of 'A wandering mind is a less caring mind: Daily experience sampling during compassion meditation training'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

  • Cite this