Title

Mindfulness and Law Enforcement: An Effective Approach to Implementing Mindfulness for First Responders

Date of Award

Spring 5-20-2017

Document Type

Thesis

Degree Name

MA - Master of Arts

Department

Mindfulness Studies

First Advisor

Nancy Waring

Second Advisor

Melissa Jean

Abstract

An increasing number of studies show that people employed as first responders in high trauma service jobs tend to experience a high level of stress, at work and after hours. Studies suggest that constant exposure to job related stress leads to both physical and mental dysregulation. This study looks at the effects of implementing mindfulness tools and techniques to those working in law enforcement. Other works on this topic report mindfulness as a successful tool to increase wellbeing to a broad spectrum of populations. The methodology used in this study was designed specifically for first responders. The data findings were gathered through pre and post self-perceived stress questionnaires at three different law enforcement agencies. The conclusion is shown as a final number that indicated either an increase or decrease in stress.

The findings suggest that a two-hour mindfulness workshop decreases self-perceived stress for those working in high trauma jobs. While there are numerous studies based on mindfulness interventions, and numerous studies based on stress levels of first responders, only a few combine both. The findings in this study are based on one population, first responders, and are therefore streamlined and concentrated. The conclusion and implications for future study suggest that 1) mindfulness programs may be successful in decreasing stress, and 2) incorporating mindfulness as a part of first responder training could lead to an increase in wellbeing.

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons Attribution-No Derivative Works 4.0 License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-No Derivative Works 4.0 License.

Language

English

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