The Relationship between Perceived Social Support, Meaning in Life and Existential Anxiety in Young Adults: A Mediational Study
This study aimed to explore the relationship between three variables: existential anxiety, perceived social support, and meaning in life. Two main hypothesis were tested in the study: 1) There will be significant correlation between all the three pairs of variables, viz. existential anxiety and perceived social support; existential anxiety and meaning in life; meaning in life and perceived social support. 2) Meaning in life will mediate the effect of perceived social support on existential anxiety. The data was gathered from 118 young adults from Manipal Academy of Higher Education. They were given three questionnaires after their informed consent was obtained. The three questionnaires included: Existential Anxiety Questionnaire, Meaning in Life Questionnaire, and Multidimensional Scale of Perceived Social Support. The data indicated that there was a moderate positive correlation between perceived social support and meaning in life. A moderate negative correlation was found between perceived social support and existential anxiety. A low negative correlation was found between existential anxiety and meaning in life. Further regression analysis was conducted with existential anxiety as the dependent variable and perceived social support as the independent variable. Sobel Test was used to verify if meaning in life was a mediator between the two . However, the results indicated that meaning in life did not mediate the effect of perceived social support on existential anxiety. The important finding from this study is that perceived social support and existential anxiety are negatively correlated. This points to the need to foster stronger social support systems in young adults who are experiencing existential anxiety..