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Associations between valued living and responsiveness to daily rewards (Pages 193-200)

Journal of Contextual Behavioral Science (JCBS)

Volume 26, October 2022, Pages 193-200


Jessica S. Fields, Rebecca K.Browne, Sarah T.Wieman, Kayla A.Lord, Susan M.Orsillo, Gabrielle I.Liverant


Valued living, or the extent to which one's behaviors are congruent with one's values, has been identified as a key target within acceptance-based and CBT treatments. Valued living has been associated with reduced symptom severity and better treatment outcomes. However, the mechanisms underlying these relationships are unclear. Theory suggests that valued living may increase reward salience and/or responsiveness to rewards. However, this remains largely untested. This study is the first to explore associations between valued living and reward responsiveness during both the anticipatory and consummatory phases of reward processing. In addition, this study explored whether valued living in specific domains was associated with reward responsivity in the same or dissimilar domains. A sample of 258 college students completed baseline questionnaires and a 7-day daily diary paradigm assessing reward responsivity to naturally occurring reinforcers. Significant global associations were found among valued living and both anticipatory and consummatory reward responsivity. Valued living across interpersonal, self-care, and educational/work domains was largely predictive of both anticipatory and consummatory reward responsivity in corresponding and distinct domains. Reward responsiveness in the educational/work domain demonstrated the weakest associations with valued living. Findings suggest relationships between valued living and increased reward responsiveness, highlighting a potential mechanism of action contributing to enhanced clinical outcomes and supporting the clinical utility of values-work.

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