Ceremonies of the whole: Does social participation moderate the mood consequences of neuroticism?

Greg Murray, Fiona Judd, Henry J Jackson, Caitlin Fraser, Angela Komiti, Pip Pattison, Alex Wearing, Garry Robins

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13 Citations (Scopus)


Background The aim of this research was to test whether social participation is associated with improvements in mood and well-being, and in particular to test whether social participation might moderate the chronic distress associated with high levels of neuroticism (N). Method A rural Australian sample of 394 adults (54.3 female) completed questionnaires and participated in follow-up interviews. Social participation was indexed by community group membership, and operationalised for analysis in two forms: extent (number of group memberships) and presence (zero vs. one or more memberships). Mood was measured as Positive Affect (PA) and Negative Affect (NA) as rated on the Positive and Negative Affect Schedule and well-being was measured with Diener s Satisfaction with Life (SWL) questionnaire. Items from Goldberg s International Personality Item Pool were used to measure N. Results The extent of social participation was significantly associated with all three mood/well-being variables in bivariate analyses, and remained as a significant net predictor of PA and NA (beta= 0. 11, P <0.05, beta = -0. 13, P <0.05) when modeled with age, gender and income. In parallel, categorical social participation was found to be significantly associated with PA, NA and SWL in bivariate analyses and in multivariate analyses controlling for age, gender and income (beta = 0. 11, P <0.05, beta = -0. 15, P <0.0 1 and beta = 0. 11, P <0.05, respectively). The interaction term N*Social interaction was significantly correlated with NA in bivariate analyses involving both continuous (r = -0.14, P <0.01) and categorical (r = -0.13, P <0.01) measures of social participation, and in its continuous form remained a significant net predictor of NA after controlling for the main effects of N and Social participation (beta = -0.09, P <0.05). Conclusions The present findings extend upon existing evidence that social participation tends to be positively associated with m
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)173 - 180
Number of pages8
JournalSocial Psychiatry and Psychiatric Epidemiology
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 2007

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