Does a mindfulness intervention have a significant effect on preference for intrinsic or extrinsic benefits of environmentally friendly behaviours?
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There is an increased interest in encouraging the public to regularly demonstrate environmentally friendly behaviours. Previous research has suggested that these behaviours can be sustained for longer if the individual is intrinsically motivated rather than extrinsically motivated. People who feel a high connection to nature are more likely to demonstrate environmentally friendly behaviour; this can be measured both explicitly and implicitly. It is important to cultivate a high implicit connection to nature because implicit attitudes have an underlying influence on performing environmentally friendly behaviours that are not deliberately thought about. Mindfulness can be used by individuals with a low connection to nature to reconceptualise how they perceive the environment and increase how connected they feel to it. The current study investigates whether mindfulness can be used to increase implicit connection to nature and preferences for the intrinsic benefits of environmentally friendly behaviours. Participants were assigned to either a mindful or mindless intervention and completed an IAT, INS, and an environmental behaviour test phase. The results showed that there was not a significant change in IAT score because of the intervention and that the participants in the mindfulness condition did not have a significant preference for the intrinsic benefits of environmentally friendly behaviours. This implies that the mindfulness intervention cannot be used to intrinsically motivate individuals to behave in an environmentally friendly manner.
Lobb, A. (2021) ‘Does a mindfulness intervention have a significant effect on preference for intrinsic or extrinsic benefits of environmentally friendly behaviours?’, 14(1), pp. 568-582.