Responsiveness to a mindfulness manipulation predicts affect regarding an anger-provoking situation

Catherine N.M. Ortner, Philip David Zelazo

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

7 Scopus citations


We examined the relation between individual differences in response to a brief mindfulness manipulation and affective reactions to a conflict-provoking situation. Participants recalled a recent personal situation of conflict. They wrote about the event for 10 min and rated their anger and affect on the Positive and Negative Affect Schedule (PANAS) before participating in 1 of 3 10-min manipulations: a mindfulness manipulation, a neutral distraction manipulation, or no manipulation. Participants then completed the Toronto Mindfulness Scale (TMS) before writing about the same event a second time. Finally, participants completed ratings of affect (PANAS) and self-reported anger again. There were no between-groups differences in TMS-Curiosity scores, but TMS-Decentering scores were higher after distraction than after mindfulness or no manipulation. Anger and negative affect significantly decreased from pre- to postmanipulation for all 3 groups. Tests of simple slopes indicated that TMS-Decentering and TMS- Curiosity scores predicted reductions of negative affect and anger in the mindfulness group, suggesting that the mindfulness manipulation was effective for only a subset of individuals, perhaps those higher in dispositional mindfulness.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)117-124
Number of pages8
JournalCanadian Journal of Behavioural Science
Issue number2
StatePublished - 2014


  • Anger
  • Distraction
  • Mindfulness
  • Negative affect


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