Law enforcement personnel (LEPs) experience occupational stressors that can result in poor health outcomes and have a negative impact on the communities they serve. Dispositional mindfulness, or receptive awareness and attention to present moment experience, has been shown to negatively predict perceived stress and to moderate the relationship between stressors and negative stress-related outcomes. The current study is an investigation of the moderating role of specific facets of dispositional mindfulness (i.e., nonreactivity, nonjudging, and acting with awareness) in the relationship between occupational stressors and perceived stress in a sample of LEPs. As hypothesized, nonreactivity significantly moderated the relationship between operational stressors and perceived stress, such that LEPs low in nonreactivity exhibited a significant relationship between stressors and perceived stress, whereas those high in nonreactivity did not. Nonjudging also moderated the relationship between organizational stressors and perceived stress; however, unexpectedly, LEPs high in nonjudging evidenced a significant relationship between stressors and perceived stress, whereas those low in nonjudging did not. Potential implications of these findings for LEP stress reduction interventions are discussed.
Joshua Benjamin Kaplan, Michael S. Christopher, Sarah Bowen
Journal of Police and Criminal Psychology, September 2018, Volume 33, Issue 3