A study investigating the effects of Mindfulness-Based Strengths Practice (MBSP) on wellbeing

Itai Ivtzan, Ryan M. Niemiec, Charlie Briscoe

Abstract


Abstract: Mindfulness practice and character strengths have been determined as being two separate positive psychology interventions (PPIs). However, to date, no programme has researched and investigated the effects of combining these theoretically interlinked practices together, with the aim of enhancing wellbeing from a positive psychology perspective. The current controlled study was designed to establish the effectiveness of an 8-week online mindfulness-based character strengths practice (MBSP) on wellbeing, for the general population. Nineteen participants completed the MBSP programme, and 20 participants were placed in a no-intervention control group. Self-report questionnaires, including Satisfaction With Life Scale, Flourishing Scale, Positive Psychotherapy Inventory, and a Signature Strengths Inventory Scale, were used to evaluate the levels of wellbeing and flourishing pre- and post-intervention. Wilcoxon signed-rank tests found that MBSP participants scored significantly higher in all four measures post-MBSP, whereas participants in the control group did not, with the only exception of a slight increase in satisfaction with life scores. The study found MBSP to be the first PPI programme aimed at the general population, which explicitly focuses on character strengths to elicit significant positive changes and increase levels of wellbeing. Given our preliminary results, larger samples utilising randomised control trial methods should attempt to confirm these preliminary findings. The programme’s future is promising, since its application appears to have great potential to positively influence people’s lives, thus moving closer to the goal of increasing societal flourishing.


Keywords


Mindfulness-Based Strengths Practice, positive psychology intervention, mindfulness, character strengths

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DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.5502/ijw.v6i2.557

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