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      The prospective effect of purpose in life on gambling disorder and psychological flourishing among university students

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          Abstract

          Background and aims

          Gambling disorder (GD) is a mental disorder with a relatively higher prevalence in university students compared to adolescents and adults. Its reciprocity with mental being indicators, such as psychological flourishing, would be expected, but prior to this study had not yet been empirically examined. In addition, the predictive value of purpose in life (PIL) on university students' GD and psychological flourishing also remained unknown. This 1-year longitudinal study was the first to test the potential bidirectional relationships among PIL, self-reported GD symptoms, and psychological flourishing.

          Methods

          In this study, a total of 283 university students (39.6% females; age = 18–27 years, M = 20.47, SD = 1.15) completed an anonymous questionnaire at both baseline and a year later in a follow-up study.

          Results

          The results of our cross-lagged analysis did not show the hypothesized reciprocity between GD symptoms and psychological flourishing ( P > 0.05). However, PIL significantly predicted fewer GD symptoms ( β = −0.23, P < 0.001) and higher levels of psychological flourishing ( β = 0.30, P < 0.001) in the follow-up study. Moreover, psychological flourishing predicted PIL a year later.

          Conclusion

          The findings demonstrate the potential efficacy of purpose/meaning oriented interventions in gambling prevention and in well-being promotion programs.

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          Author and article information

          Contributors
          Journal
          2006
          Journal of Behavioral Addictions
          J Behav Addict
          Akadémiai Kiadó (Budapest )
          2062-5871
          2063-5303
          20 August 2020
          Affiliations
          [1 ] deptDepartment of Psychology, Faculty of Social Sciences ,University of Macau,Taipa,Macao,China
          [2 ] deptCenter for Cognitive and Brain Sciences ,University of Macau,Taipa,Macao,China
          Author notes
          [* ]Corresponding author. anisewu@ 123456um.edu.mo
          Article
          10.1556/2006.2020.00046
          © 2020 The Author(s)

          Open Access statement. This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License ( https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/4.0/), which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium for non-commercial purposes, provided the original author and source are credited, a link to the CC License is provided, and changes – if any – are indicated.

          Page count
          Figures: 2, Tables: 1, Equations: 0, References: 94, Pages: 10
          Funding
          Funded by: University of Macau
          Award ID: MYRG2015-00213-FSS
          Award ID: MYRG2019-00014-FSS
          Categories
          Full-length Report

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