Leveraging Mindfulness to Build Resilience and Professional Quality of Life in Human Service Professionals

Andrew Hanna, Aileen M. Pidgeon

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Objective: Mindfulness-based interventions (MBIs) have shown promise in cultivating resilience and are widely accepted as efficacious in the treatment of a range of psychological disorders. This paper explores the feasibility of a mindful-awareness and resilience skills training (MARST) program to enhance mindfulness and resilience, as a means of increasing psychological well-being and alleviating burnout and compassion fatigue in human service professionals.
Method: In this randomised control trial, 46 human service professionals were randomly allocated to either a MARST group or to a no intervention, control group.
Results: Multivariate analysis of covariance (MANCOVA), with pre-test scores as the covariates, revealed that the MARST intervention resulted in significant improvements in mindfulness, resilience, compassion satisfaction, and psychological well-being, and significant reductions in burnout and compassion fatigue; at post-intervention. These results were maintained at one month follow-up, with the exception of compassion satisfaction which was non-significant. Mediation analysis using a bootstrap resampling method indicated that mindfulness fully mediated changes in resilience and psychological well-being, as a result of the MARST intervention. Self-reported reductions in burnout following the intervention were mediated by mindfulness and resilience, and decreased compassion fatigue was mediated by resilience.
Conclusions: The results of this study suggest that the MARST program may assist in developing resilience and reduce burnout and compassion fatigue in human service professionals. The study also provides evidence for the potential of mindfulness-based approaches to enhance resilience.
Original languageEnglish
Article number007
Number of pages21
JournalOBM Integrative and Complementary Medicine
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 16 May 2018


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