The quality of life, resources, and coping during the first weeks of the COVID‑19 pandemic in people seeking psychological counselling before the pandemic
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The John Paul II Catholic University of Lublin, Lublin, Poland (Institute of Psychology)
PsychoSfera, Lublin, Poland (Independent Researcher)
Joanna Chwaszcz   

The John Paul II Catholic University of Lublin, Institute of Psychology, al. Racławickie 14 (C-441), 20-950 Lublin, Poland
Online publication date: 2021-04-21
Int J Occup Med Environ Health 2021;34(2):275–287
Objectives: This study aimed to understand the relationship between resource gains and losses, coping, and the quality of life during the growth phase of the COVID‑19 pandemic. Material and Methods: The Internet-based survey covered 353 individuals who had participated in a psychological support project operated by one of the non-governmental organizations in Lublin, Poland, in the 12 months prior to the outbreak of the pandemic. The questionnaire used in the study contained questions to collect sociodemographic data and psychometric scales to measure resource gains and losses (the Conservation of ResourcesEvaluation questionnaire), the quality of life (the World Health Organization Quality of Life-BREF), and strategies of coping with the pandemic situation (a modified Brief Coping Orientation to Problems Experienced questionnaire). Results: A higher global quality of life occurred with higher gains and minor losses, as well as with coping through planning, positive reframing, emotional support seeking, a reduced substance use tendency, low self-blame, avoidance, and disengagement. Moreover, helplessness-based coping strategies were found to mediate both the relationships between resource gains and the quality of life, and between resource losses and the quality of life. Conclusions: Factors that may reduce people’s quality of life during the COVID‑19 pandemic are an increase in losses and limited gains, experienced over the 6 months preceding the pandemic, as well as not using active, meaning-oriented, and support-seeking coping strategies, but using avoidance behaviors instead. Coping strategies specific to people experiencing helplessness are a mediating mechanism between losses and limited gains of resources, and the quality of life. Int J Occup Med Environ Health. 2021;34(2):275–87