An Examination of Coping Strategies and Mindfulness as Predictors of Appearance Satisfaction and Body Image
Degree awarded: M.A. Psychology. American University
Body image involves beliefs, perceptions, and cognitions regarding the physical self. Research on the subject has found that body image concerns are associated with a variety of negative outcomes, and that positive body image is linked with greater overall well-being. The present study examined more specifically how positive and negative styles of coping relate to body image. Mindfulness, or non-judgmental acceptance and awareness, was also investigated as a potential correlate of body image. A total of 200 adults responded to an online questionnaire assessing body image, mindfulness, and coping. Results of correlation analyses indicated that body image, coping, and mindfulness are significantly related. Additional regression analyses found that coping styles significantly predicted positive and negative body image, and that mindfulness significantly predicted coping styles but not body image. These findings reveal potential mechanisms by which body image may be protected or improved, and have potential implications in treatment and research.