Listed in Issue 188


WATERS and COLLEAGUES,  Department of Medical and Clinical Psychology, Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences, 4301 Jones Bridge Road, Bethesda, MD 20814, USA. conducted a cross-section study of smokers to assess degree of mindfulness with self-reported negative affect, perceived stress, depressive symptom severity, and positively associated  with positive affect.


Theory suggests that mindful individuals exhibit enhanced attentional processing (e.g., attentional control) and that they maintain a detached perspective to problematic stimuli. For smokers, smoking and affective stimuli are problematic stimuli when they try to quit.


In this cross-sectional study, smokers (n = 158) completed 3 modified Stroop tasks (to assess attentional control), 3 Implicit Association Tests (IATs; to assess detached perspective), and a battery of self-report assessments.


Degree of mindfulness was negatively associated (P < .05) with self-reported negative affect, perceived stress, and depressive symptom severity, and positively associated (P < .05) with positive affect. Degree of mindfulness was not associated with the ability to disengage attention from smoking or affective stimuli. On the depression IAT, more mindful participants exhibited a more negative IAT effect, suggesting that they may have developed a detached perspective to depression-related stimuli.


Theoretical and clinical implications of the data are discussed.


Waters AJ, Reitzel LR, Cinciripini P, Li Y, Marcus MT, Vidrine JI, Wetter DW. Associations between mindfulness and implicit cognition and self-reported affect. Substance Abuse. 30(4): 328-37. Oct-Dec 2009.

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