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Mindfulness mediation found to improve executive attention…

A study published in the Frontiers in Neuroscience journal has found ten minutes of mindfulness mediation can improve an individual’s cognitive (providing individuals’ were relatively lower in neuroticism). Mindfulness may be used to describe a variety of practices and processes. It is most commonly defined as a two-component process that includes: a) attention to present moment experience, coupled with b) an attitude that is open, non-reactive, and accepting of things as they are. To date, a wealth of research has emerged in both academic journals and popular media on the benefits of mindfulness meditation

The research included two studies. a) In an attempt to examine the effects of brief mediation on attention in novice mediators, participants (thirty-seven) were asked to listen to a ten-minute audio recording of a mindfulness mediation vs a control group and then complete a version of the Flanker Task. It was hypothesized that brief mindfulness mediation would improve (better accuracy and/or reduced response times) executive attention and individuals higher in neuroticism will not show a strong improvement in executive attention. b) Given the findings of the first study, study two used a different albeit related task (Attention Network Task) in order to show that brief medication can improve attention, particular for individuals lower in neuroticism. This study involved fifty-six participants.

Study one found a brief-minute mindfulness meditation can improve executive attentional control even in inexperienced mediators. Participants in study two demonstrated faster reaction times regardless of trial type, consistent with the conclusion that they were better able to focus and respond correctly and more quicker than participants in the control group. The studies expand the current literature of our understanding of the initial effects of brief meditation, and suggests that brief meditation impacts attention even in novice practitioners—an effect that was revealed when controlling for neuroticism.

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