Psychological Network Analysis of General Self-Efficacy in High vs. Low Resilient Functioning Healthy Adults.
Resilience to stress has gained increasing interest by researchers from the field of mental health and illness and some recent studies have investigated resilience from a network perspective. General self-efficacy constitutes an important resilience factor. High levels of self-efficacy have shown to promote resilience by serving as a stress buffer. However, little is known about the role of network connectivity of self-efficacy in the context of stress resilience. The present study aims at filling this gap by using psychological network analysis to study self-efficacy and resilience. Based on individual resilient functioning scores, we divided a sample of 875 mentally healthy adults into a high and low resilient functioning group. To compute these scores, we applied a novel approach based on Partial Least Squares Regression on self-reported stress and mental health measures. Separately for both groups, we then estimated regularized partial correlation networks of a ten-item self-efficacy questionnaire. We compared three different global connectivity measures-strength, expected influence, and shortest path length-as well as absolute levels of self-efficacy between the groups. Our results supported our hypothesis that stronger network connectivity of self-efficacy would be present in the highly resilient functioning group compared to the low resilient functioning group. In addition, the former showed higher absolute levels of general self-efficacy. Future research could consider using partial least squares regression to quantify resilient functioning to stress and to study the association between network connectivity and resilient functioning in other resilience factors.