Loneliness and Schizotypal Traits in Cognitive Failures
Loneliness commonly occurs among patients with schizophrenia. It disrupts emotional and cognitive functioning, two interrelated domains. However, more often than not, these affected domains are investigated separately. Further, there is limited research on the consequences of loneliness for individuals thought to be prone to psychosis in their demonstration of sub-clinical schizotypal traits. Against a backdrop of schizotypal traits, the current study investigated the effects of loneliness on the relationship between negative emotional states and cognitive failures. Sub-clinical schizotypal traits, loneliness, negative emotional states and cognitive failures were measured in 156 university students. A moderation analysis was conducted using the PROCESS macro for SPSS to examine how the relationship between negative emotional states and cognitive failures varied according to schizotypal traits. Additional moderation by loneliness was further examined. Negative emotional states and cognitive failures were more strongly related as schizotypal traits increased. The presence of loneliness further intensified this relationship across all levels of schizotypal traits. However, effect sizes of loneliness decreased as schizotypal traits increased. The relationship between negative affect and cognitive failures is moderated by schizotypal traits and loneliness. Loneliness interacts with schizotypal traits dynamically and warrants further investigation.