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Maladaptive behaviors, such as aggressive and disruptive behaviors, are a significant risk factor for maintaining community placement by individuals with intellectual disabilities. When experienced researchers provide training to individuals with intellectual disabilities on a mindfulness-based strategy, Meditation on the Soles of the Feet, the individuals are able to effectively self-manage their maladaptive behaviors. We investigated whether similar effectiveness would be found if community-based therapists provided the training to similar individuals living in the community. Three adults with mild intellectual disabilities and mental illness living in the community were taught by a community-based therapist to use this strategy to control maladaptive behaviors that included verbal aggression, disruptive behavior and physical aggression. They were taught to shift the focus of their attention from the negative emotions that triggered their maladaptive behavior to a neutral stimulus, the soles of their feet. All three individuals were able to reduce their maladaptive behaviors to near-zero levels and maintain their community placement that they had been at risk for losing, due to their maladaptive behavior. Subjective measures of various psychological symptoms showed a reduction in two of the individuals. Our study suggests that the demonstrated effectiveness of Meditation on the Soles of the Feet can be achieved by a community-based therapist.
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- Using a Mindfulness-Based Procedure in the Community: Translating Research to Practice
Angela D. Adkins
Ashvind N. Singh
Alan S. W. Winton
Gerald F. McKeegan
- Springer US