How engaging in mind-focused or body-focused Eastern practices affects the way people narrate challenging events

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Publication Type honors thesis
School or College College of Social & Behavioral Science
Department Psychology
Faculty Mentor Monisha Pasupathi
Creator Hanley, Grace
Title How engaging in mind-focused or body-focused Eastern practices affects the way people narrate challenging events
Year graduated 2014
Date 2014-05
Description Yoga and meditation could influence how individuals mentally process and narrate their difficult experiences from the past. Specifically, such practices could result in increased exploration, growth, and positive resolution in narratives, compared to neutral conditions. Past researchers have employed autobiographical writing as a therapeutic activity to help individuals understand objectionable incidents and utilize their memories in order to grow from the experience. This process requires that people explore events, acknowledge their negativity, and construct positive meanings and resolution. Because Eastern practices have the ability to reduce feelings of anxiety and depression, yoga and meditation could encourage exploration in narratives and foster these narrative processes. To test these ideas, 79 participants first engaged in one of four possible 10-15 minute activities: a yoga sequence, an exercise regime, a meditation, or watching a series of neutral pictures. Second, subjects were asked to recall and narrate one of three types of life events: transgressions, victimizations, and turning points. Stories were then coded for emotional exploration, growth, and resolution using an adapted version of the Coding System for Components of Transformational Processing (Pals, 2006). Based on multivariate analyses collected from subjects, it was found that meditation significantly increased emotional exploration, growth, and resolution in narratives. Contrary to hypotheses, yoga did not consistently increase those narrative elements. Conclusively, meditation could be used conjointly with storytelling to help individuals overcome affective problems attributed to past negative events.
Type Text
Publisher University of Utah
Subject Narration (Rhetoric) - Psychological aspects; Mediation - Therapeutic use; Yoga - Therapeutic use
Language eng
Rights Management (c) Grace Hanley
Format Medium application/pdf
Format Extent 280,384 bytes
Permissions Reference URL
ARK ark:/87278/s6zs65rb
Setname ir_htoa
Date Created 2016-11-03
Date Modified 2019-07-10
ID 205889
Reference URL
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