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The association between metacognitions and psychological symptoms: moderator role of coping strategies

Safrancı, Başak
The present study firstly aimed to examine specific metacognitions as unique predictors of various psychological symptoms including anxiety, depression, worry and social anxiety. The second aim of the study was to investigate the moderator role of coping styles in the relationship between metacognitions and these psychological symptoms. Based on these aims, the study was conducted with 435 participants between the ages 18-35 and the following scales were administered in addition to demographic forms; Trait Anxiety Inventory, Beck Depression Inventory, Penn State Worry Questionnaire, Libowitz Social Anxiety Scale, Metacognitions Questionnaire-30 and The Ways of Coping Inventory. According to the results, Negative Beliefs Concerning Uncontrollability of Thoughts and Danger (MCQ-2) was found to be as significant predictor of all examined psychological symptoms. Positive Beliefs about Worry (MCQ-1) was also revealed as significant predictor of anxiety, worry and social anxiety and avoidance. Furthermore, the results revealed negative associations between Cognitive Self-Consciousness (MCQ-5) and anxiety, worry and social anxiety. Finally, Beliefs about Need to Control Thoughts (MCQ-4) was found to be related with increase in depression and decrease in worry. In addition, regression analyses revealed negative relationship between Problem-Focused Coping and anxiety, depression and worry; and positive relationship between Emotion-Focused Coping and anxiety, social anxiety and avoidance. The moderation models of coping styles was also supported in which coping ways moderate the relationship between metacognitions and psychological symptoms including depression, absence of worry, social anxiety and avoidance. Findings were discussed based on relevant literature; and clinical implications of the study and future directions were also provided.