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      Mindfulness meditation and explicit and implicit indicators of personality and self-concept changes


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          The scientific interest on mindfulness meditation (MM) has significantly increased in the last two decades probably because of the positive health effects that this practice exerts in a great variety of clinical and non-clinical conditions. Despite attention regulation, emotional regulation, and body awareness have been argued to be critical mechanisms through which MM improves well-being, much less is known on the effects of this practice on personality. Here we review the current state of knowledge about the role of MM in promoting changes in practitioners’ personality profiles and self-concepts. We first focus on studies that investigated the relations between mindfulness and personality using well-known self-report inventories such as the Five-Factor model of personality traits and the Temperament and Character Inventory. Second, based on the intrinsic limitations of these explicit personality measures, we review a key set of results showing effects of MM on implicit, as well as explicit, self-representations. Although the research on MM and personality is still in its infancy, it appears that this form of meditative practice may notably shape individuals’ personality and self-concept toward more healthy profiles.

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          Most cited references 42

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          Mechanisms of mindfulness.

          Recently, the psychological construct mindfulness has received a great deal of attention. The majority of research has focused on clinical studies to evaluate the efficacy of mindfulness-based interventions. This line of research has led to promising data suggesting mindfulness-based interventions are effective for treatment of both psychological and physical symptoms. However, an equally important direction for future research is to investigate questions concerning mechanisms of action underlying mindfulness-based interventions. This theoretical paper proposes a model of mindfulness, in an effort to elucidate potential mechanisms to explain how mindfulness affects positive change. Potential implications and future directions for the empirical study of mechanisms involved in mindfulness are addressed. Copyright (c) 2005 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.
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            Attention regulation and monitoring in meditation.

            Meditation can be conceptualized as a family of complex emotional and attentional regulatory training regimes developed for various ends, including the cultivation of well-being and emotional balance. Among these various practices, there are two styles that are commonly studied. One style, focused attention meditation, entails the voluntary focusing of attention on a chosen object. The other style, open monitoring meditation, involves nonreactive monitoring of the content of experience from moment to moment. The potential regulatory functions of these practices on attention and emotion processes could have a long-term impact on the brain and behavior.
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              Associative and propositional processes in evaluation: an integrative review of implicit and explicit attitude change.

              A central theme in recent research on attitudes is the distinction between deliberate, "explicit" attitudes and automatic, "implicit" attitudes. The present article provides an integrative review of the available evidence on implicit and explicit attitude change that is guided by a distinction between associative and propositional processes. Whereas associative processes are characterized by mere activation independent of subjective truth or falsity, propositional reasoning is concerned with the validation of evaluations and beliefs. The proposed associative-propositional evaluation (APE) model makes specific assumptions about the mutual interplay of the 2 processes, implying several mechanisms that lead to symmetric or asymmetric changes in implicit and explicit attitudes. The model integrates a broad range of empirical evidence and implies several new predictions for implicit and explicit attitude change.

                Author and article information

                Front Psychol
                Front Psychol
                Front. Psychol.
                Frontiers in Psychology
                Frontiers Media S.A.
                29 January 2015
                : 6
                1Department of Human Sciences, University of Udine Udine, Italy
                2Department of Psychology, University of Rome La Sapienza Rome, Italy
                Author notes

                Edited by: Barbara Tomasino, University of Udine, Italy

                Reviewed by: Lorenza S. Colzato, Leiden University, Netherlands; Yolanda R. Schlumpf, University of Zurich – Clienia Littenheid AG, Switzerland

                *Correspondence: Cristiano Crescentini, Department of Human Sciences, University of Udine, Via Margreth 3, 33100 Udine, Italy e-mail: cristiano.crescentini@ 123456uniud.it

                This article was submitted to Cognition, a section of the journal Frontiers in Psychology.

                Copyright © 2015 Crescentini and Capurso.

                This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (CC BY). The use, distribution or reproduction in other forums is permitted, provided the original author(s) or licensor are credited and that the original publication in this journal is cited, in accordance with accepted academic practice. No use, distribution or reproduction is permitted which does not comply with these terms.

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