International Journal of Psychology and Psychological Therapy

Volume 14 Num. 2 - June 2014


How Important is Temperament? The Relationship Between Coping Styles, Early Maladaptive Schemas and Social Anxiety

Volume 14 Num. 2 - June 2014 - Pages 171-189


Kathleen Mairet , Simon Boag , Wayne Warburton


Young?s Schema Theory provides a theoretical framework that relates temperament, coping styles and Early Maladaptive Schemas to social anxiety and Social Anxiety Disorder (SAD). The current study explored the relationship between these variables in a sample of 360 non-clinical adults. Results indicated that individuals higher in social anxiety display higher levels of schemas themed around Disconnection and Rejection than individuals low in social anxiety. Temperament appears to influence the type of coping style some individuals adopt with more introverted individuals utilising more avoidant strategies. Nevertheless, neuroticism appears to have a stronger relationship with Disconnection and Rejection schemas than coping strategies linked to either avoiding or overcompensating for stressors. Path analysis was used to test three models of the data based on the relationships proposed by Young and colleagues. Results provide preliminary evidence that the impact of maladaptive schemas on coping strategies is stronger than the influence of coping strategies on such schemas. The implications of the findings for both theory and treatment concerning social anxiety and SAD are discussed, along with suggestions for future research

Key words:

Social Anxiety, early maladaptive schemas, temperament, coping styles, Schema therapy

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