Poster Presentation 6th World Congress on Positive Psychology 2019

The Mediating Role Of Emotion-Focused Coping Strategies On The Relationship Between Neuroticism And Anxiety Among Adolescents (#553)

Barbara Chuen Yee Lo 1 2 3 , Chung Yee Ma 3 , Kasey Hoi Shuen Chung 1
  1. Department of Applied Psychology, Lingnan University, Hong Kong
  2. Wofoo Joseph Lee Consulting and Counselling Psychology Research Centre, Lingnan University, Hong Kong
  3. Department of Psychology, The University of Hong Kong, Hong Kong

Anxiety becomes a rising problem among adolescents in recent years, leading to serious psychological symptoms and physical discomfort (Reiss, 2013).  Previous studies have shown that neuroticism is a predictor of anxiety among youths (Clark, Watson & Mineka, 1994; Costa & McCrae, 1980).  Yet, the underlying mechanisms that drive this relationship are largely unknown and there had been some mixed findings on what exactly mediates this relationship (Broderick, 1998; Nolen-Hoeksema, Parker & Larson, 1994).  To facilitate our understanding in this matter, the current study examines the role of emotion-focused coping strategies, as a mediator in explaining the association between neuroticism and anxiety among adolescents.  A total of 118 participants aged between 9 to 15 years old took part in our study and filled in self-report measures including the Revised NEO Personality Inventory (NEO PI-R), Revised Ways of Coping Checklist and the Multidimensional Anxiety Scale for Children (MASC).  Based on the result of structural equation modeling, neuroticism predicts anxiety through the mediating effects of the four negative emotion-focused coping strategies, including blamed self, blamed others, wishful thinking and avoidance.  Our findings draw implications for risk identification and early prevention intervention for adolescent anxiety.