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GERMANO, Guadalupe  and  BRENLLA, María Elena. Influencia del tiempo psicológico y el autocontrol en el malestar psicológico en adultos argentinos. Interdisciplinaria [online]. 2023, vol.40, n.2, pp.461-477. ISSN 1668-7027.

Psychological time is an essential aspect of humans. Two of the most important notions of subjective temporality are time perspective and temporal focus. Time perspective is a process by which the flow of personal and social experiences are framed in five different temporal categories: past negative, past positive, present hedonistic, present fatalistic and future. Temporal focus refers to the attention people devote to thinking about the past, present, and future. Previous research shows there is a strong relation between psychological time and self-regulatory processes, specifically self-control and impulsivity. Self-control is the ability to inhibit impulsive behaviors or reactions that can keep the person from pursuing the proposed goals. On the other hand, impulsivity refers to a short attention span and a tendency to engage in risky behaviors, and to prefer immediate rewards. Both subjective temporality and self-regulatory processes influence behaviors and psychological states such as psychological distress. In particular, the objective of this study was to find out if subjective temporality –time perspective and temporal focus-- and self-control and impulsivity have repercussions on psychological distress, particularly during the COVID-19 pandemic, in an Argentinian sample. The theoretical conjecture is that subjective temporality is closely linked to self-regulation, which influences the development of impulsivity and self-control, and impacts psychological distress. A quantitative, non-experimental, and cross-sectional empirical study was carried out (. = 279; 78 % women; ME = 30.14 years old; SD = 11.21). Firstly, the results of the correlational analysis showed significant relations between the variables. Then, to facilitate further analyses, an index variable of self-control was created, which included the scores of self-control and three dimensions of impulsivity. An optimal parallel analysis was performed. It indicated the existence of a single dimension. Then a semi-confirmatory factor analysis was ran, which showed acceptable results (KMO = .68; X. (6) = 198.8, . < .001; GFI = .99; RMSR = 0.03). Thirdly, to determine the predictive variables of psychological distress, a multiple linear regression analysis was performed. It was found that 48 % of the variance of psychological distress was explained by negative past, self-control index, and future and present temporal focuses (. (4, 266) = 64.66, . < .001, R. = .49, R. adjusted = .48). The best predictor variable was past negative. Afterwards, a theoretical model was tested to explain the direct and indirect causes of psychological distress. It presented a good fit (X./gl = 1.63; GFI = .99; RMSEA = .04). Time perspective and temporal focus explained 53 % of the variability of self-control and presented indirect effects on psychological distress through self-control. Self-control inversely influenced psychological distress; more self-control generates less psychological distress. The model explained half of the variance of psychological distress (R. = .50). The findings indicate that subjective temporality and self-control explain psychological states, even during a pandemic, which confirms previous studies that show the importance of personality variables –in addition to biological and contextual variables– in the manifestation of psychological distress. The results support the theory that psychological time can be considered as a personality trait underlying self-control and psychological distress. A theoretical and practical discussion of the results is presented.

Keywords : subjective temporality; time perspective; temporal focus; self-control; impulsivity; psychological distress; path analysis; adulthood.

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