The Benefits of Being Present: Mindfulness and Its Role in Psychological Well-Being

Kirk Warren Brown, Richard M. Ryan

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

7782 Scopus citations


Mindfulness is an attribute of consciousness long believed to promote well-being. This research provides a theoretical and empirical examination of the role of mindfulness in psychological well-being. The development and psychometric properties of the dispositional Mindful Attention Awareness Scale (MAAS) are described. Correlational, quasi-experimental, and laboratory studies then show that the MAAS measures a unique quality of consciousness that is related to a variety of well-being constructs, that differentiates mindfulness practitioners from others, and that is associated with enhanced self-awareness. An experience-sampling study shows that both dispositional and state mindfulness predict self-regulated behavior and positive emotional states. Finally, a clinical intervention study with cancer patients demonstrates that increases in mindfulness over time relate to declines in mood disturbance and stress.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)822-848
Number of pages27
JournalJournal of Personality and Social Psychology
Issue number4
StatePublished - Apr 2003


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