The Effectiveness of Mindfulness-Based Compassion-Therapy on Sleep Quality and Satisfaction with Life in Elderly Women

Document Type : Original Article


1 Department of Counseling, Allameh Tabataba'i University, Tehran, Iran

2 Faculty of Education and Psychology, Islamic Azad University of Marvdasht, Iran

3 Department of Counseling, Faculty of Education and Psychology, Alzahra University, Tehran, Iran

4 Institute for Cognitive Science Studies, Brain and Cognition Clinic, Tehran, Iran

5 PhD of Clinical Psychology, Department of Education and Psychology, Shahid Beheshti University, Tehran, Iran


Introduction: The aging process is an important phenomenon in global health. In fact, the psychological and physical well-being of elderly women must be taken into consideration. This study was conducted in order to determine the effect of Mindfulness-Based Compassion-Therapy (MBCT) on sleep quality and satisfaction with life in elderly women.
Method: This study was a quasi-experimental investigation with a pre-test, post-test, and follow-up along with a control group. For this purpose, 15 elderly women were randomly assigned to the intervention or the control group. The intervention group received mindfulness-based compassion- therapy over eight weeks, one session per week, while the control group did not receive any intervention. Pittsburgh Sleep Quality Index (PSQI; 1989) and Satisfaction with Life Scale (SWLS; 1985) were completed by elderly women to evaluate the research variables during the intervention’s pre-test, post-test, and follow-up periods. Descriptive statistics, Levene’s test, Box’s M Test, Bonferroni, and repeated measures ANOVA using SPSS-22 were used for data analysis. In the control group, no therapy was applied. After the intervention, both groups were tested.
Results: Findings showed that the intervention group’s mean sleep quality and satisfaction with life improved after mindfulness training. In addition, the study revealed that the mean sleep quality and satisfaction with life levels between the intervention and control groups were significantly different (p<0.01).
Conclusion: According to the results of the present study, mindfulness-based compassion- therapy improved sleep quality and satisfaction with the life of elderly women. This intervention represents new horizons in psychological interventions and can improve the mental health and well-being of elderly women.


  1. Phulkerd S, Thapsuwan S, Chamratrithirong A, Gray RS. Influence of healthy lifestyle behaviors on life satisfaction in the aging population of Thailand: a national population-based survey. BMC Public Health. 2021;21(1):43.
  2. Mohamadpour F, Aflakseir A, Mohamadi N, Hadianfard H. Identifying and Codifying the Model of Meaning of Life in the Iranian Elderly: A Qualitative Study. Int J Behav Sci . 2021 Jul [cited 2022 Sep 9];(Online First). https://doi. 10.30491/IJBS.2021.251653.1391
  3. Fiocco AJ, Yaffe K. Defining Successful Aging: The Importance of Including Cognitive Function Over Time. Arch Neurol . 2010;67(7). doi:10.1001/archneurol.2010.130
  4. Aydın A, Işık A, Kahraman N. Mental health symptoms, spiritual well‐being and meaning in life among older adults living in nursing homes and community dwellings. Psychogeriatrics. 2020;20(6):833–43. doi: 10.1111/psyg.12613
  5. Kang SH, Yoon IY, Lee SD, Kim T, Lee CS, Han JW, et al. Subjective memory complaints in an elderly population with poor sleep quality. Aging Ment Health. 2017;21(5):532–6. doi: 10.1080/13607863.2015.1124839
  6. Thichumpa W, Howteerakul N, Suwannapong N, Tantrakul V. Sleep quality and associated factors among the elderly living in rural Chiang Rai, northern Thailand. Epidemiol Health. 2018;40:e2018018. doi: 10.4178/epih.e2018018.
  7. Serrano-Checa R, Hita-Contreras F, Jiménez-García JD, Achalandabaso-Ochoa A, Aibar-Almazán A, Martínez-Amat A. Sleep Quality, Anxiety, and Depression Are Associated with Fall Risk Factors in Older Women. Int J Environ Res Public Health. 2020;17(11):4043. doi: 10.3390/ijerph17114043
  8. Tyng CM, Amin HU, Saad MNM, Malik AS. The Influences of Emotion on Learning and Memory. Front Psychol. 2017;8:1454. doi:10.3389/fpsyg.2017.01454
  9. Lamoureux-Lamarche C, Vasiliadis HM. Lifetime traumatic events, health-related quality of life, and satisfaction with life in older adults. Qual Life Res. 2017;26(10):2683–92. doi: 10.1007/s11136-017-1593-6
  10. Liu Y, Liu J, Zhou S, Xu X, Cheng Y, Yi Y, et al. Life satisfaction and its influencing factors of middle-aged and elderly stroke patients in China: a national cross-sectional survey. BMJ Open. 2022;12(8):e059663. doi:10.1136/bmjopen-2021-059663
  11. Ornat L, Martínez-Dearth R, Muñoz A, Franco P, Alonso B, Tajada M, et al. Sexual function, satisfaction with life and menopausal symptoms in middle-aged women. Maturitas. 2013;75(3):261–9. doi: 10.1016/j.maturitas.2013.04.007
  12. Charlifue S, Lammertse DP, Adkins RH. Aging with spinal cord injury: Changes in selected health indices and life satisfaction. Arch Phys Med Rehabil. 2004;85(11):1848–53. doi: 10.1016/j.apmr.2004.03.017
  13. Pan L, Li L, Peng H, Fan L, Liao J, Wang M, et al. Association of depressive symptoms with marital status among the middle-aged and elderly in Rural China–Serial mediating effects of sleep time, pain and life satisfaction. J Affect Disord. 2022;303:52–7. doi: 10.1016/j.jad.2022.01.111
  14. Subaşı F, Hayran O. Evaluation of life satisfaction index of the elderly people living in nursing homes. Arch Gerontol Geriatr. 2005;41(1):23–9. doi:10.1016/j.archger.2004.10.005
  15. Park JH, Min S, Eoh Y, Park SH. The elderly living in single-person households in South Korea: a latent profile analysis of self-esteem, life satisfaction, and depression. Qual Life Res. 2021;30(4):1083–92. doi:10.1007/s11136-020-02693-1
  16. Chou KL, Chi I. Successful Aging among the Young-Old, Old-Old, and Oldest-Old Chinese. Int J Aging Hum Dev. 2002;54(1):1–14. doi: 10.2190/9K7T-6KXM-C0C6-3D64
  17. Papacocea RI, Timofte D, Tanasescu MD, Balcangiu‑stroescu AE, Balan DG, Tulin A, et al. Kidney aging process and the management of the elderly patient with renal impairment (Review). Exp Ther Med. 2021;21(3):266. doi: 10.3892/etm.2021.9697
  18. Zhang J, Zhao A. Dietary Diversity and Healthy Aging: A Prospective Study. Nutrients. 2021 May 24;13(6):1787. doi: 10.3390/nu13061787
  19. Can Gür G, Yilmaz E. The effects of mindfulness-based empathy training on empathy and aged discrimination in nursing students: A randomised controlled trial. Complement Ther Clin Pract. 2020;39:101140. doi: 10.1016/j.ctcp.2020.101140.
  20. Raab K. Mindfulness, Self-Compassion, and Empathy Among Health Care Professionals: A Review of the Literature. J Health Care Chaplain. 2014;20(3):95–108. doi: 10.1080/08854726.2014.913876
  21. Nooripour R, Ghanbari N, Hoseinian S, HasaniAbharian P, Dobkins K, Maadal A. Effectiveness of Mindfulness-Based Cognitive Rehabilitation in Reducing Stress among Hard of Hearing Adolescent Girls. Int J Behav Sci . 2021;(Online First). doi: 10.30491/IJBS.2021.253241.1400
  22. Haji-Seyed-Sadeghi M, Zarani F, Mazaheri-Nejad-Fard G, Heidari M. Effectiveness of Training Mindfulness on Psychological Well-being, Coping Strategy and Family Function among Women Suffering from Breast Cancer. Int J Behav Sci . 2020;13(4). doi: 10.30491/IJBS.2020.104123
  23. Conversano C, Ciacchini R, Orrù G, Di Giuseppe M, Gemignani A, Poli A. Mindfulness, Compassion, and Self-Compassion Among Health Care Professionals: What’s New? A Systematic Review. Front Psychol. 2020;11:1683. doi: 10.3389/fpsyg.2020.01683
  24. Raj S, Sachdeva SA, Jha R, Sharad S, Singh T, Arya YK, et al. Effectiveness of mindfulness based cognitive behavior therapy on life satisfaction, and life orientation of adolescents with depression and suicidal ideation. Asian J Psychiatry. 2019;39:58–62. doi: 10.1016/j.ajp.2018.12.001
  25. Pizarro-Ruiz JP, Ordóñez-Camblor N, Del-Líbano M, Escolar-LLamazares MC. Influence on Forgiveness, Character Strengths and Satisfaction with Life of a Short Mindfulness Intervention via a Spanish Smartphone Application. Int J Environ Res Public Health. 2021;18(2):802. doi:10.3390/ijerph18020802
  26. Rusch HL, Rosario M, Levison LM, Olivera A, Livingston WS, Wu T, et al. The effect of mindfulness meditation on sleep quality: a systematic review and meta‐analysis of randomized controlled trials. Ann N Y Acad Sci. 2019;1445(1):5–16. doi: 10.1111/nyas.13996
  27. Nakamura Y, Lipschitz DL, Landward R, Kuhn R, West G. Two sessions of sleep-focused mind–body bridging improve self-reported symptoms of sleep and PTSD in veterans: A pilot randomized controlled trial. J Psychosom Res. 2011;70(4):335–45. doi: 10.1016/j.jpsychores.2010.09.007
  28. Buysse DJ, Reynolds CF, Monk TH, Berman SR, Kupfer DJ. The Pittsburgh sleep quality index: A new instrument for psychiatric practice and research. Psychiatry Res. 1989;28(2):193–213. doi: 10.1016/0165-1781(89)90047-4
  29. Carpenter JS, Andrykowski MA. Psychometric evaluation of the pittsburgh sleep quality index. J Psychosom Res. 1998;45(1):5–13. doi: 10.1016/s0022-3999(97)00298-5
  30. Farrahi Moghaddam J, Nakhaee N, Sheibani V, Garrusi B, Amirkafi A. Reliability and validity of the Persian version of the Pittsburgh Sleep Quality Index (PSQI-P). Sleep Breath. 2012 Mar;16(1):79–82. doi: 10.1007/s11325-010-0478-5
  31. Diener E, Emmons RA, Larsen RJ, Griffin S. The Satisfaction With Life Scale. J Pers Assess . 1985;49(1):71–5. doi: 10.1207/s15327752jpa4901_13
  32. López-Ortega M, Torres-Castro S, Rosas-Carrasco O. Psychometric properties of the Satisfaction with Life Scale (SWLS): secondary analysis of the Mexican Health and Aging Study. Health Qual Life Outcomes. 2016;14(1):170. doi: 10.1186/s12955-016-0573-9
  33. Maroufizadeh S, Ghaheri A, Omani Samani R, Ezabadi Z. Psychometric properties of the satisfaction with life scale (SWLS) in Iranian infertile women. Int J Reprod Biomed . 2016;14(1):57–62. PMID: 27141550
  34. Gilbert P. Introducing compassion-focused therapy. Adv Psychiatr Treat. 2009;15(3):199–208. doi:10.1192/apt.bp.107.005264
  35. Ruths FA, de Zoysa N, Frearson SJ, Hutton J, Williams JMG, Walsh J. Mindfulness-Based Cognitive Therapy for Mental Health Professionals—a Pilot Study. Mindfulness. 2013;4(4):289–95. doi:10.1007/s12671-012-0127-0
  36. Blake MJ, Snoep L, Raniti M, Schwartz O, Waloszek JM, Simmons JG, et al. A cognitive-behavioral and mindfulness-based group sleep intervention improves behavior problems in at-risk adolescents by improving perceived sleep quality. Behav Res Ther. 2017 Dec;99:147–56. doi: 10.1016/j.brat.2017.10.006.
  37. Garland SN, Carlson LE, Stephens AJ, Antle MC, Samuels C, Campbell TS. Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction Compared With Cognitive Behavioral Therapy for the Treatment of Insomnia Comorbid With Cancer: A Randomized, Partially Blinded, Noninferiority Trial. J Clin Oncol. 2014 Feb 10;32(5):449–57. doi: 10.1200/JCO.2012.47.7265
  38. Nourian M, Nikfarid L, Khavari AM, Barati M, Allahgholipour AR. The Impact of an Online Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction Program on Sleep Quality of Nurses Working in COVID-19 Care Units: A Clinical Trial. Holist Nurs Pract. 2021;35 (5):257–63. doi: 10.1097/HNP.0000000000000466
  39. Zhang J xu, Liu X hui, Xie X hui, Zhao D, Shan M shui, Zhang X liang, et al. Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction for Chronic Insomnia in Adults Older than 75 Years: A Randomized, Controlled, Single-Blind Clinical Trial. EXPLORE. 2015;11(3):180–5. doi: 10.1016/j.explore.2015.02.005
  40. Ong JC, Ulmer CS, Manber R. Improving sleep with mindfulness and acceptance: A metacognitive model of insomnia. Behav Res Ther. 2012;50(11):651–60. doi: 10.1016/j.brat.2012.08.001
  41. Harris K, Spiegelhalder K, Espie CA, MacMahon KMA, Woods HC, Kyle SD. Sleep-related attentional bias in insomnia: A state-of-the-science review. Clin Psychol Rev. 2015;42:16–27. doi: 10.1016/j.cpr.2015.08.001
  42. Tang YY, Ma Y, Wang J, Fan Y, Feng S, Lu Q, et al. Short-term meditation training improves attention and self-regulation. Proc Natl Acad Sci. 2007;104(43):17152–6. doi: 10.1073/pnas.0707678104
  43. Lau WKW, Leung MK, Wing YK, Lee TMC. Potential Mechanisms of Mindfulness in Improving Sleep and Distress. Mindfulness. 2018;9(2):547–55. doi: 10.1007/s12671-017-0796-9.
  44. Wang YY, Wang F, Zheng W, Zhang L, Ng CH, Ungvari GS, et al. Mindfulness-Based Interventions for Insomnia: A Meta-Analysis of Randomized Controlled Trials. Behav Sleep Med. 2020;18(1):1–9. doi: 10.1080/15402002.2018.1518228
  45. Perez-Blasco J, Sales A, Meléndez JC, Mayordomo T. The Effects of Mindfulness and Self-Compassion on Improving the Capacity to Adapt to Stress Situations in Elderly People Living in the Community. Clin Gerontol. 2016;39(2):90–103. doi:10.1080/07317115.2015.1120253
  46. Tan J, Yang W, Ma H, Yu Y. Adolescents’ Core Self-Evaluations as Mediators of the Effect of Mindfulness on Life Satisfaction. Soc Behav Personal Int J. 2016;44(7):1115–22. doi: 10.2224/sbp.2016.44.7.1115
  47. Verhaeghen P, Aikman SN. The I in mindfulness: How mindfulness relates to aspects of self and psychological well-being. Psychol Conscious Theory Res Pract . 2022; 23-30. doi:10.1037/cns0000337
  48. Hsieh HH, Huang JT. Core Self-Evaluations and Job and Life Satisfaction: The Mediating and Moderated Mediating Role of Job Insecurity. J Psychol. 2017 Apr 3;151(3):282–98. doi: 10.1080/00223980.2016.1270888