Intrusive Thoughts Mediate the Association between Neuroticism and Cognitive Function.

Published

Journal Article

Although research has established a negative association between trait neuroticism and cognition, little is known about the mechanisms that underlie this relationship. We examined the tendency to experience intrusive thoughts and negative affect as potential mediators of the relationship between neuroticism and cognitive performance. We hypothesized that the tendency to experience intrusive thoughts reflects ineffective attentional control and would account for the relationship between neuroticism and cognitive performance over and above the mediating effect of negative affect. Three hundred seventeen adults (Mage =49.43) completed a series of attention-demanding cognitive tasks as well as self-report measures of intrusive thoughts, negative affect, and neuroticism. Intrusive thoughts mediated the association between trait neuroticism and cognitive performance beyond negative affect. These findings are consistent with the hypothesis that the tendency to experience intrusive thoughts is a mechanism through which trait neuroticism influences cognitive performance.

Full Text

Duke Authors

Cited Authors

  • Munoz, E; Sliwinski, MJ; Smyth, JM; Almeida, DM; King, HA

Published Date

  • November 1, 2013

Published In

Volume / Issue

  • 55 / 8

Start / End Page

  • 898 - 903

PubMed ID

  • 24683284

Pubmed Central ID

  • 24683284

International Standard Serial Number (ISSN)

  • 0191-8869

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)

  • 10.1016/j.paid.2013.07.019

Language

  • eng

Conference Location

  • England