We’ve all felt that pang when we’re left out, but mindfulness can help ease the sting. Researchers from Oxford University had 40 participants answer a questionnaire on how mindful they typically were, and then measured the activity of their brain while they tossed a virtual ball back-and-forth with two others. After a few minutes, the participants’ partners (who were actually computer programs) stopped tossing the ball to the participants and just passed it between themselves. In many participants, this evoked strong feelings of distress, however those who rated more highly on the mindfulness questionnaire reported less distress when they were left out. It’s thought that it could be a good coping strategy, as it allows people to focus their awareness on their present feelings, without judging them as inherently negative or positive.