Psychological flexibility: positive implications for mental health and life satisfaction

Lucas, James J. and Moore, Kathleen A. 2020, Psychological flexibility: positive implications for mental health and life satisfaction, Health promotion international, vol. 35, no. 2, pp. 312-320, doi: 10.1093/heapro/daz036.

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Title Psychological flexibility: positive implications for mental health and life satisfaction
Author(s) Lucas, James J.ORCID iD for Lucas, James J.
Moore, Kathleen A.
Journal name Health promotion international
Volume number 35
Issue number 2
Start page 312
End page 320
Total pages 9
Publisher Oxford University Press
Place of publication Oxford, Eng.
Publication date 2020-04
ISSN 0957-4824
Keyword(s) cognitive defusion
experiential acceptance
life satisfaction
mental health
psychological flexibility
Summary New wave therapies such as Acceptance and Commitment Therapy aim to cultivate people’s psychological flexibility in order for them to live a satisfying life. Psychological flexibility has also a role in promoting mental health, which may mediate the relationship with life satisfaction. The aim of this study was to determine whether mental health mediates the effect of psychological flexibility on life satisfaction. A convenience sample of 140 adults (32 males, M = 36.50 years, SD = 12.22; 107 females, M = 38.46 years, SD = 12.81; and a 45-year-old person of unknown gender) completed an online questionnaire assessing psychological flexibility, mental health and life satisfaction. Three of the four hypothesized components of psychological flexibility (experiential acceptance, cognitive alternatives and cognitive control) contributed to the latent construct of psychological flexibility, but cognitive defusion failed to contribute. Psychological flexibility had a direct, positive effect on life satisfaction and the hypothesis that mental health would mediate this relationship was supported. The results suggest that psychological flexibility is important for one’s mental health and that both are integral to life satisfaction. The results also support a continued focus on third-wave therapies in cultivating psychological flexibility.
Language eng
DOI 10.1093/heapro/daz036
Indigenous content off
Field of Research 1117 Public Health and Health Services
1302 Curriculum and Pedagogy
HERDC Research category C1 Refereed article in a scholarly journal
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Document type: Journal Article
Collections: Faculty of Health
School of Health and Social Development
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