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Decision-making styles and depressive symptomatology: Development of the Decision Styles Questionnaire

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Abstract of the Article

Difficulty making decisions is one of the symptoms of depressive illness. Previous research suggests that depressed individuals may make decisions that differ from those made by the non-depressed and that they use sub-optimal decision-making strategies. For this study, we constructed an instrument that aims to measure a variety of decision-making styles as well as the respondent’s view of him or herself as a decision-maker (decisional self-esteem).

Decision-making styles and depressive symptomatology: Development of the Decision Styles Questionnaire
Decision-making styles and depressive symptomatology: Development of the Decision Styles Questionnaire
These styles and estimates of decisional self-esteem were then related to depressive symptoms. Depressive symptomatology correlated negatively with the perception of self as a decision-maker. Those with higher depression severity scores characterized themselves as being more anxious about decisions, and more likely to procrastinate.
They also reported using fewer productive decision-making strategies, depending more on other people for help with decisions, and relying less on their own intuitions when making decisions. Further research is needed to determine the extent to which these decision-making styles are antecedents to depressive symptomatology or are instead products of, or aspects of, the phenomenology associated with depression.

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