Mindfulness and attachment style The explanatory role emotion

Report
Mindfulness and
Attachment Style:
&
The Explanatory Role
of
Emotion Regulation
Crystal Pearce, William Lovegrove, Steven Roodenrys
Overview
 Definitions
 Study
 The
of terms
background
current study
 Implications
 Future
Directions
Definitions of Terms
Mindfulness (Kabat-Zinn, 1994)

The state of being attentive to and aware of present
experiences in a non-judgmental way.

FFMQ (Baer et al., 2006):
•
•
•
•
•
observing
describing
acting w awareness
non-judging
non-reactivity
Attachment

A child’s earliest relationship with their primary caregiver
creates the template that shapes expectations for future
relationships (Bowlby,1998; Siegel and Hartzell, 2003).
ATTACHMENT STYLES
SECURE ATTACHMENT
ANXOUS
• INSECURE ATTACHMENT
AVOIDANT
• INSECURE ATTACHMENT
Emotion Regulation
 The
extrinsic and intrinsic regulatory processes
responsible for managing positive and negative
emotions toward goal accomplishment (Thomson,
1994).
Gross (1998) Model
Cognitive •Antecedent
Reappraisal focussed
Suppressive •Response
Expression
focussed
EMOTION
REGULATION
Mindfulness and Emotion
Regulation
Mindful Coping Model (Garland, Gaylord & Park, 2009)
 Metacognitive mode of mindfulness allows one to shift from
stress appraisals to positive reappraisals.
 Decentering: Thoughts are transient events, not reality.
Why Attachment Styles?
 Low
mindfulness <-> Insecure attachment
 High
mindfulness <-> Secure attachment
The Current Study
 Attachment
and processes of mindfulness
may be bi-directionally related (Siegel,
2007):
1. Secure attachment -> greater capacity for
mindfulness
2. Mindfulness training -> secure attachment
Study Aims
Study 1- Cross-section: Are they related?
1. Aims to replicate previous findings that dispositional
mindfulness will correlate with attachment style in nonmeditators.
Study 2 - Pre-post Intervention: Did they change? How?
1. Aims to investigate whether an 8-week MBSR course can
facilitate secure attachment within interpersonal relationships.
2. To Investigate the role emotion regulation strategies play in
mindfulness.
3.To test the Mindful Coping Model (Garland, Gaylord & Park,
2009) that proposes positive reappraisal will increase as a
mechanism of change in mindfulness.
4.Based on this model, determine whether a change in
attachment style is mediated by positive reappraisal.
Pre-Post Hypotheses
Path Diagram of proposed mediation model
The Current Study
 STUDY1:
students
 STUDY
Cross-sectional analyses in University
2: Pre- post study in the general population :
Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction (MBSR) program
 Control group (regular exercisers)

Method
Study 1
Study 2
MBSR
240 University
StudentsSurvey responses
CONTROL
Pre-test
survey N=75
Pre-test
survey N=62
8-week MBSR
Program
8 weeks of
regular exercise
Post-test survey
Post-test survey
N=16
N=22
Measures
Mindfulness = FFMQ e.g.
Non-reactivity
“I perceive my feelings and emotions without having to react to
them.”

Emotion Regulation = ERQ e.g. Positive Reappraisal
“When I want to feel more positive emotion (such as joy or
amusement), I change what I’m thinking about.”

Attachment Style = ECR-RS e.g. Anxious attachment
“I often worry that this person doesn't really care for me.”

Results & Discussion
Study 1

There was a significant positive association between
dispositional mindfulness and anxious attachment
at p< .01, but there was no significant relationship
with avoidant attachment.

There was a significant negative relationship
between mindfulness and reappraisal r= -.340,
sig<.001. (not supporting the Mindful Coping Model)

There was a significant positive relationship between
mindfulness and suppression r= .285, sig<.001.
Cont.
 Correlations
on pre-test MBSR group, N=75 and pretest control group, N=62 indicated the same
significant pattern of relationships between
mindfulness, reappraisal and suppression.
 REAPPRAISAL
correlated negatively with all four
subscales of FFMQ but ‘acting with awareness’.
 SUPPRESSION
correlated positively with all four
scales of the FFMQ but ‘non-reactivity’.
Cont.
Reappraisal
-0.14**
FFMQ
Mindfulness
0.11**
Anxious
Attachment
Suppression
0.08**
FFMQ
Anxious
Attachment
Mindfulness
0.12**
** Sig< 0.01
Study 2
 MBSR
N: Pre = 75 : Post = 16
 Control N: Pre 62 : Post = 22
 Pre-test
Correlations: No relationship between
mindfulness and attachment styles
 Suppression
+ Mindfulness
 Reappraisal - Mindfulness

2(control, MBSR) X 2(time1, time2) mixed model
ANOVAS were conducted to compare effects of time
and group on the key variables.

No significant changes in variable scores in the control
group between Pre- and Post- testing
Group Mean Pre-post
Values of Reappraisal
145
24
140
22
135
130
MBSR
125
Control
120
115
110
Mean Reappraisal Scores
Mean FMQ scores
Group Mean Pre-Post values
of Mindfulness
20
18
MBSR
16
Control
14
12
10
Pre
Post
Pre
Post
Aims/Hypotheses
Supported
Study 1: To replicate previous findings;
hypothesising that mindfulness will
correlate with attachment style in nonmeditators.
Unexpected correlation between
mindfulness and anxious attachment in
student population.
Study 2 :
1. An MBSR course will facilitate a secure
attachment style within interpersonal
relationships.
Decrease in anxious attachment but not
significant.
2. To Investigate the role emotion
regulation strategies play in mindfulness.
Suppression correlated positively with
mindfulness.
Reappraisal correlated negatively with
mindfulness.
(In 3 population samples) ✔
3. To test the Mindful Coping Model
(Garland, Gaylord & Park, 2009),
hypothesising that positive reappraisal will
increase as a mechanism of change in
mindfulness.
Reappraisal did not increase with
mindfulness training as suggested by this
model. The model was unsupported as
Reappraisal significantly decreased.
4. Based on this model, determine whether
a change in attachment style is mediated
by positive reappraisal.
No significant change in attachment style
to assess mediating relationships.
Implications
 Within
this study, the Mindful Coping Model (2009) is
unsupported: Results indicate reappraisal
decreases with mindfulness training rather than
increases.
 Consistent pattern across populations show that
reappraisal goes down with increased mindfulness,
and expressive suppression plays a role in
mindfulness.
 There were no changes in attachment styles,
although as such patterns of behaviour have been
reinforced since infancy, 8-weeks may not be
enough to effectively change attachment styles
Limitations
Overall:
 Over-reliance on self-report measures
 Time restrictions of participants, and use of the
population by concurrent researchers meant
selecting small measures.
Study 2:
 Low response & high attrition
 Lack of additional measures.
 Self-selected groups
Future Directions
 Further
exploration of the relationship between
suppression, reappraisal and mindfulness.
 Results did not support the Mindful Coping Model,
however a much larger sample size should be used
in future research on the model.
 To investigate attachment correlations and
changes with mindfulness training, a larger sample
size is necessary. Follow-up analyses will be
beneficial to examine long-term effects of
mindfulness on attachment style to determine a
change.
Correlation Matrix

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