Mind the Others: Assessing the Effects of Mindfulness on Social Evaluations, Emotions and Behavior

Tuesday 6 June 2023, 12:30 pm
PhD student
K.L. van der Schans MSc.
prof. dr. J.C.T.M. Karremans, dr. R.W. Holland

When triggered or provoked people often act out in a reactive or anti-social matter. The goal of this dissertation was to investigate whether mindfulness benefits interpersonal responses in such challenging situations. Using various methodologies, target groups and operationalizations of mindfulness, we gained a mosaic perspective about what mindfulness could mean in various domains of interpersonal behavior The findings from my dissertation show that mindfulness has the potential to benefit social responses: a short mindfulness training decreased interpersonal bias and an 8-week mindfulness training improved self-reported interpersonal responses. Nonetheless, there might be circumstances in which mindfulness does not benefit interpersonal behavior. For instance, findings of this dissertation paint a picture that state mindfulness and mindfulness training might affect interpersonal responses more consistently than general measurements of trait mindfulness Also, these presumed interpersonal effects might not readily spill over towards improved interpersonal perceptions by interaction partners. More research is necessary to assess the psychological processes of how mindfulness might benefit interpersonal behavior. 

Kim Lien van der Schans (1991) completed the Research Master Behavioural Science at the Radboud University. In December 2016 she started her PhD Research at the Behavioural Science Institute Radboud University, department of Social and Cultural Psychology. Currently, Kim Lien works as a knowledge advisor (kennisadviseur) at the autonomous administrative authority UWV (Employee Insurance Agency).