06-01-2023 | Original Paper
Who Sticks with Meditation? Rates and Predictors of Persistence in a Population-based Sample in the USA
Gepubliceerd in: Mindfulness | Uitgave 1/2023Log in om toegang te krijgen
Despite the well-documented psychological benefits of meditation practice, limited research has examined factors associated with meditation practice persistence. Like other health behaviors (e.g., exercise), non-persistence may undermine the effectiveness of meditation.
We examined rates and correlates of meditation persistence using a population-based sample (n = 953) in the USA. Persistence was operationalized in two ways: number of lifetime practice sessions (i.e., lifetime persistence) and current practice frequency (i.e., current persistence). Consistent with the National Health Interview Survey, we defined meditation as mindfulness meditation, mantra meditation, and spiritual meditation. We examined factors related to the Reasoned Action Approach (RAA), a theory that has been used to explain adherence to health behaviors.
Almost half of the sample (49.3%) indicated lifetime exposure to meditation and a third (35.0%) indicated practice in the past year. Factors positively associated with persistence (lifetime and/or current) included having spoken with a meditation teacher, higher perceived effectiveness of meditation, higher meditation-positive subjective norms, lower perceived barriers, higher conscientiousness, higher well-being growth mindset, and retreat experience. Factors negatively associated with persistence included first exposure through various forms of technology and having a mental health motivation for practice. First exposure through a smartphone app and first exposure through friends and family were not associated with lifetime or current persistence. Findings were unchanged after controlling for demographics and applying a false discovery rate p-value adjustment.
These findings provide insights into factors that may promote persistence with meditation, which can guide the delivery of meditation training.
This study was preregistered at the Open Science Framework (https://osf.io/4h86s).