Health and well-being are impacted by our thoughts and the things we do. In the laboratory, studies suggest specific task contexts impact thought processes. More broadly, this suggests the people we are with, the places we are in, and the activities we perform may influence our thought patterns. In our study, participants completed experience sampling surveys for five days in daily life. Principal component analysis decomposed this data to identify common “patterns of thought,” and linear mixed modelling related these patterns to the participants’ activities. Our study replicated the influence of socializing on patterns of thought and established that this is part of a broader set of relationships linking activities to how thoughts are organized in daily life. Our study suggests sampling thinking in the real world may help map thoughts to activities, and these “thought-activity” mappings could be useful to researchers and health care professionals interested in health and well-being.
Bibliographical noteFunding Information:
This research is supported by award to Dr. Jonathan Smallwood and Dr. Jeffery D. Wammes from the Government of Canada's New Frontiers in Research Fund (NFRF) [grant ID NFRF-2021-00183].
This research is supported by award to Dr. Jonathan Smallwood and Dr. Jeffery D. Wammes from the Government of Canada’s New Frontiers in Research Fund (NFRF) [grant ID NFRF-2021-00183].
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- Daily life
- Experience sampling
- Ongoing conscious thought