During one of my internships, I (Lisa Vos) worked together with dr. Gaëtan Mertens on an ongoing study of fear of COVID-19. We used data of the first Wave to investigate whether there are positive traits that might serve as protective factors against the negative mental health consequences of COVID-related fear. After we finished the internship, we worked together with dr. Mirela Habivić, dr. Ivan Nyklíček, and prof. dr. Tom Smeets and modified my internship paper into a research paper. I really enjoyed working on this project together with dr. Gaëtan Mertens, who was always very enthusiastic and open to discuss the findings. He even gave me the opportunity to present our findings during one of the HSRI webinars at the university, which was a great experience!
Here you can read what the article is about:
The COVID-19 pandemic has a substantial impact on mental health. Prior reports have shown that depression, anxiety, and stress have increased throughout the pandemic. Nonetheless, not everyone is affected by these negative consequences and some people may be relatively unaffected. In this online study in a predominantly Dutch and Belgian sample (N = 546), we investigated whether positive personality traits such as optimism, mindfulness, and resilience may protect against the negative mental health consequences (i.e., fear of the coronavirus, depression, stress, and anxiety) of the COVID-19 pandemic. We found that fear of COVID-19 was related to higher depression, stress, and anxiety. However, for participants scoring high on mindfulness, optimism, and resilience, this relationship was weakened. In addition to these findings, we present the results of network analyses to explore the network structure between these constructs. These results help to identify possible ways through which psychological well-being can be promoted during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Do you want to read the whole article? Click here!
Vos, L. M. W., Habibović, M., Nyklíček, I., Smeets, T., & Mertens, G. (2021). Optimism, mindfulness, and resilience as potential protective factors for the mental health consequences of fear of the coronavirus. Psychiatry Research, 300(December 2020), 113927. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.psychres.2021.113927