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Mindful : August 2019
improvement over time than adults in the mindfulness meditation g roup. The findings suggest that for some, cognitive therapies may be more fitting, while others may gain more from meditation, or a combination of mindfulness principles and cognitive therapy. MORE MIND- FULNESS, LESS LONELINESS Half of US adults report feel- ing lonely and isolated. Accord- ingtoanew study, mindful- ness could help. A study at the University of Pittsburgh asked 153 self-identified stressed people to try a 14-lesson smartphone- based training to curb loneliness and social isola- tion. About one- third practiced acceptance and paying attention to thoughts, feel- ings, and behav- iors, both core aspects of mind- fulness. The rest received either attention training or learned tools for coping with stress. Research- ers used smart- phones instead of in-person work to see if learning new skills would boost social con- tact and reduce loneliness. After two weeks, the acceptance and attention g roup participants had roughly two more social con- tacts per day, and were 22% less lonely. The other groups showed little change. Researchers con- cluded that hav- ing an attitude of acceptance and paying attention to our experi- ence can increase social connec- tion and reduce loneliness. BREATH AWARE- NESS MAY IMPROVE BRAIN EFFICIENCY Breath awareness training may help keep us sharp into old age. In a study conducted by researchers at the University of Granada, the University of Liv- erpool, and Liver- pool John Moores University, 21 healthy adults received four hours of mindful- ness instruction and were asked to practice mindful breath aware- ness daily for 10 minutes per day over three weeks. Readings of brain activa- tion during their performance on computer tests found them to be less impulsive and better able to effectively and accurately solve complex prob- lems compared to adults with no meditation expe- rience. The more they meditated, the better their results. Having an attitude of acceptance and paying attention to our experience can increase social connec- tion and reduce loneliness August 2019 mindful 13 top of mind