Roles of positive psychology for mental health in UK social work students: self-compassion as a predictor of better mental health
AffiliationUniversity of Derby
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AbstractDespite high shame about mental health symptoms among UK social work students, positive psychological approaches to their mental health have not been investigated in depth. Emotional resilience has been a core skill in social work practice, however its relationship with mental health is still unclear. Therefore, the primary purposes of this cross-sectional study were to (i) examine the relationships between mental health and positive psychological constructs, namely resilience, self-compassion, motivation, and engagement, and (ii) determine predictors of mental health in UK social work students. An opportunity sampling of 116 UK social work students (102 females, 14 males; 96 undergraduates, 20 postgraduates) completed five measures about these constructs. Correlation and regression analyses were conducted. Mental health was associated with resilience, self-compassion, and engagement. Self-compassion was a negative predictor, and intrinsic motivation was a positive predictor of mental health symptoms. Resilience did not predict mental health symptoms. The findings highlight the importance of self-compassion to the challenging mental health of UK social work students; they caution against the overuse and misunderstanding of resilience in the social work field.
CitationKotera, Y., Green, P. and Sheffield, D., (2019). 'Roles of positive psychology for mental health in UK social work students: self-compassion as a predictor of better mental health'. The British Journal of Social Work, pp. 1-20. DOI: 10.1093/bjsw/bcz149
JournalBritish Journal of Social Work