University of Twente Student Theses


Changing Stress Mindsets

Miebert, Marie A.N. (2019) Changing Stress Mindsets.

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Abstract:Stress mindset describes people’s believe about stress, which may be either that stress has positive consequences, called a stress-is-enhancing (SIE) mindset, or that stress has negative consequences, called a stress-is-debilitating (SID) mindset.. The purpose of this study was to examine whether stress mindsets can be changed as well as to investigate the influence of self-esteem on the relationship between stress mindset and well-being. It was hypothesized that stress mindsets can be changed. Further, it was hypothesized that a SIE mindset is related to increased well-being, which is mediated by self-esteem, while a SID mindset is related to lower well-being mediated through self-esteem. Respondents were randomly assigned to one of three condition groups: SIE, SID or control. In the timespan of about one week, participants (N = 75) filled in a pre- and a post-test online survey and the SIE and SID condition watched three short video clips with either positive or negative factual information about stress. The control group received filler questions instead of the videos. Apart from questions concerning the demographic data, respondents answered questionnaires regarding their stress mindset, well-being and self-esteem levels. After the video manipulation participants in the SIE condition developed more of a SIE mindset compared to the SID and control condition. This indicates that the intervention was effective in the SIE condition in changing the mindset about stress. In contrast to expectations, the results showed no significant effect of both a SIE and a SID mindset on well-being that was mediated by self-esteem. A significant effect of changes in self-esteem on changes in well-being has been found in the SID but not in the SIE condition. Future research should focus on examining if the stress mindset moderates the relationship between changes in self-esteem and changes in well-being.
Item Type:Essay (Bachelor)
Faculty:BMS: Behavioural, Management and Social Sciences
Subject:77 psychology
Programme:Psychology BSc (56604)
Keywords:Stress, Mindset, Well-being, Self-esteem
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