The relationship between selfcontrol and mental and physical health: The mediating effects of avoidant coping
Psychology and Health
Trait self-control is related to a number of positive outcomes, including mental health, interpersonal success, academic success and health-related behaviours. This study sought to explore the relationships between self-control, reports of mental and physical health symptoms and coping styles. The results revealed that higher self-control was related to fewer mental and physical health symptoms and less avoidance coping. There was not a significant relationship between self-control and problem-focused or emotion-focused coping styles. Further, the relationships between self-control and mental and physical health outcomes were partially mediated by avoidance coping style. Specifically, the data suggest lower self-control is associated with unhealthy coping strategies (avoidance coping), which in turn are associated with worse mental health outcomes and greater reports of physical health symptoms. Thus lower trait self-control can serve as an indicator, suggesting circumstances in which individuals' tendencies to engage in unhealthy coping strategies are increased. These findings add to a growing body of literature underscoring the importance of trait self-control.
(2011). The relationship between selfcontrol and mental and physical health: The mediating effects of avoidant coping. Psychology and Health, 26, 1049-1062.
Available at: https://nsuworks.nova.edu/cps_facarticles/1008