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The Spotlight Activity: Development and Feasibility Test of a Naturalistic Attention-Redirection Well-Being Intervention

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Abstract (2. Language): 
Positive activities, such as savoring, gratitude, and optimism, have been shown to boost positive emotions and reduce negative emotions. We argue that a shared mechanism driving their well-being benefits is the redirection of attention. In this feasibility study, we develop and pilot-test this mechanism with a novel positive activity intervention, the "spotlight activity," that taught participants how to become mindful of where their attention was and to redirect it as needed. Individuals (initial N = 108) were randomly assigned to a 5-week spotlight activity intervention or to a waitlist control group and were assessed on measures of psychological well-being, need satisfaction, and hassles and uplifts. Preliminary results showed that, at post-test, the spotlight group reported significantly higher life satisfaction, meaning in life, and general weekly affect, as well as significantly lower negative affect and hassle intensity. The study provided initial evidence for the feasibility of a novel attention-redirection intervention and its potential to increase psychological well-being.

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