Quarantine has likely changed you.
A wealth of time and a dearth of recreational activities to indulge in forcedintrospection in many. Maybe this led to a career change, a breakup, or a new relationship.
Others found it difficult to drown out 2020’s mayhem cycle without concerts to attend and bars to sleep in.
Both groups represent contrasting pillars of mindfulness; the state of being aware of one’s surroundings and circumstances. Most experts agree on the benefits of living in the moment, but to enjoy the health benefits associated with mindfulness, it’s also important to understand our role in achieving desired outcomes and weathering undesirable ones.
In a new paper published in the journal Consulting Psychology, researchers determined the optimal way to achieve mindfulness, as well as the characteristics that best facilitate it.
“Knowledge about mindfulness and its impact on emotional reactivity, behaviors, and wellness has greatly increased in recent years as mindfulness practices make their way from the clinic to the workplace. Studies of the relationships between mindfulness and personality assessments commonly used in organizational consulting and coaching, however, have been few,” the authors wrote in the new report. “We sought to determine what relationships exist between two personality assessments (the Hogan Personality Inventory [HPI] and Hogan Development Survey [HDS]) and two measures of mindfulness (the Five Facet Mindfulness Questionnaire and the Mindfulness Attention and Awareness Scale).”
According to their findings, adjustment and ambition share a robust relationship with healthy mindfulness practices.
In psychology, adjustment refers to one’s ability to assess non-threatening and threatening situations with the same mental sharpness. Even when the stakes are high, adjusted individuals remain focused on the objective at hand.
“People with higher adjustment scores appear to be either less affected by or better able to engage stressful perceptions through acting with awareness, suspending emotional judgment internally, and responding with less reactivity externally,” the authors explained in a media release.
The clinical definition of an ambitious personality type is identical to the laymen’s understanding.
Ambitious individuals remain confident in themselves even in the face of failure. This mindset describes a determination that can’t be buffaloed by provisional circumstances.
“Behaviors relevant to both ambition and mindfulness are often described positively—being “in the zone,” “Zen-like,” and generally being both attentive and aware,” the authors continued.
Caution, leisure, and excitability all yielded negative associations with mindfulness.
Caution denotes a persistent fear of change. Cautious individuals fail to improve their circumstances because they get bogged down by negative potentialities. Mindful subjects, on the other hand, don’t appreciate negative outcomes as an indictment of their character.
“Having and holding onto fear may be why higher [cautiousness] is most negatively associated with mindfulness.”
Leisure mindsets describe those that can’t account for the feelings or wishes of others, while excitability describes the inability to remain focused during stressful situations.
Mindfulness is epicentral to an era as precarious as the one we’re currently living in. It’s the space where optimism meets reason.
There aren’t a lot of positive indicators going into 2021, but that shouldn’t discourage a productive outlook. With another potential round of lockdowns on the horizon, now might be a good time to course-correct toxic thinking patterns.
“Mindfulness comes more naturally to some than others. People with a combination of ambition, non-reactivity, and a quiet fearlessness might be especially well-adapted for mindfulness. But that’s not to say we all can’t become a bit more mindful over time,” psychologist,Mark Travers wrote of the new report.