An investigation into the relationship between the three selves (Self-as-Content, Self-as-Process and Self-as-Context) and mental health in adolescents


Orla Moran, Priscilla Almada, & Louise McHugh


It is estimated that globally, 10–20% of young people experience a mental health disorder in a given year. The emergence of many issues in adolescence can be linked to a dysfunctional sense of self. Contextual Behavioral Science (CBS) suggests that there are three functionally distinct patterns of self discrimination, that is, Self-as-Content, Self-as-Process, and Self-as-Context, each of which has important implications for a healthy, functional sense of self. This study examines the relative predictive power of the three selves according to CBS to predict mental health in adolescents. A sample of 176 adolescents participated. Using hierarchical multiple regression a significant model emerged indicating that the three selves model is predictive of mental health in adolescents. Results are discussed in terms of implications for future research, such as development of interventions based on the CBS conceptualization of self.

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