Mind-wandering and mindfulness as mediators of the relationship between online vigilance and well-being

Niklas Johannes*, Harm Veling, Jonas Dora, Adrian Meier, Leonard Reinecke, Moniek Buijzen

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

19 Citations (Scopus)


As mobile technology allows users to be online anywhere and at all times, a growing number of users report feeling constantly alert and preoccupied with online streams of online information and communication-a phenomenon that has recently been termed online vigilance. Despite its growing prevalence, consequences of this constant orientation toward online streams of information and communication for users' well-being are largely unclear. In the present study, we investigated whether being constantly vigilant is related to cognitive consequences in the form of increased mind-wandering and decreased mindfulness and examined the resulting implications for well-being. To test our assumptions, we estimated a path model based on survey data (N = 371). The model supported the majority of our preregistered hypotheses: online vigilance was indeed related to mind-wandering and mindfulness, but only mindfulness mediated the relationship with decreased well-being. Thus, those mentally preoccupied with online communication were overall less satisfied with their lives and reported less affective well-being when they also experienced reduced mindfulness.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)761-767
Number of pages7
JournalCyberpsychology, Behavior, and Social Networking
Issue number12
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2018
Externally publishedYes


  • mind-wandering
  • mindfulness
  • smartphones
  • vigilance
  • well-being


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