Research Feature: Social Anxiety and Work Status: The Role of Negative Metacognitive Beliefs, Symptom Severity and Cognitive-Behavioural Factors (Nordahl & Wells, 2017)
Psychological health has a profound effect on personal and occupational functioning with Social Anxiety Symptoms in particular having a major effect on ability to work. Recent initiatives have focused on treating psychological illness with cognitive-behavioural models with a view to increasing return to work. However, the psychological correlates of work status amongst individuals with elevated mental health symptoms such as social anxiety are under-explored. This study reports a test of unique predictors of work status drawing on variables that have been given centre stage in cognitive-behavioural models and in the metacognitive model of psychological disorder. The sample consisted of high socially anxious individuals who reported working (n=102) or receiving disability benefits (n=102). A comparison of these groups showed that those out of work and receiving benefits had greater symptom severity, higher avoidance and use of safety behaviours, greater self-consciousness, and elevated negative metacognitive beliefs and beliefs about the need to control thoughts. However, when the covariance’s between these variables were controlled only negative metacognitive beliefs significantly predicted out-of-work status. These findings might be important because CBT does not focus on metacognitive beliefs, but targets components that in our analysis had no unique predictive value for work status.
For the full article click here: http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/09638237.2017.1340622