Complex mediating effects of rumination facets between personality traits and depressive symptoms

Kieran A. Lyon, Rebecca Elliott, Laura J. E. Brown, Nora Eszlari, Gabriella Juhasz
Published Online:
19 Dec 2020

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This study investigates whether facets of rumination statistically mediate the relationships between Big Five personality traits and depressive symptoms. Self‐reported personality traits and rumination were investigated as predictors of depressive symptoms in a cross‐sectional sample of 3043 participants aged 18–60 years (68.8% female). Multiple regression analysis investigated which personality traits and rumination facets best explained variance in depressive symptoms. Structural equation modelling was used to determine whether facets of rumination mediated the relationships between personality traits and depressive symptoms. Multiple regression analysis found that variance in depressive symptoms was best explained by the personality traits neuroticism, extroversion, conscientiousness; and both facets of rumination, brooding and reflection. Structural equation modelling added that the effects of neuroticism, extroversion, conscientiousness and openness on depressive symptoms were statistically mediated by brooding; the effects of neuroticism, extroversion and openness to depressive symptoms were statistically mediated by reflection. Rumination facets statistically mediated the effects of various personality traits on depressive symptoms. These results provide insights into which individuals may be best suited to treatments for depression targeting rumination.

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