Faculty Sponsor, if applicable
Dr. Molly Brown
Time perspective (TP) is a cognitive construct referring to the extent to which a person is primarily past, present, or future oriented and has implications for motivation and goal-directed behavior (Gonzalez & Zimbardo, 1989). This study aims to identify TP profiles in a sample of individuals experiencing homelessness and to investigate psychosocial correlates of TP. Fifty-nine individuals seeking emergency shelter completed the Zimbardo Time Perspective Inventory (ZTPI), and measures of social support, psychiatric symptoms, and self-efficacy. A cluster analysis on the five ZTPI scales yielded two clusters. Cluster 1 was composed of individuals with higher Past Positive and lower Past Negative, Present Hedonism, Present Fatalism TPs than those in Cluster 2, suggestive of a positive and balanced TP. Individuals in Cluster 2, in comparison to individuals in Cluster 1, had significantly lower social support, higher psychiatric symptom severity, and lower employment self-efficacy. Results suggest that TPs characterized by positive thoughts about the past and low levels of hedonism and fatalism are associated with better psychosocial functioning. Though these findings are correlational, they suggest that mindfulness-based interventions may be indicated for individuals experiencing homelessness, as those with negatively biased TPs may be inhibited in working toward housing and employment goals.
Type of Research
Independent Study, Junior Year Experiential Learning (JYEL)