In the first week after the first COVID-19 patient was reported in the Netherlands, we conducted a pre-registered momentary assessment study (7 surveys per day, 50 participants, 7 days) to study the dynamic relationship between individuals' occupation with and worries about COVID-19 in daily life, and the moderating role of neuroticism in this relationship. At the group level, higher scores on occupation and worry co-occurred, and occupation predicted worry 1 h later, but not vice versa. There were substantial individual differences in the magnitudes and directions of the effects. For instance, occupation with COVID-19 was related to increases in worry for some but decreases in worry for others. Neuroticism did not predict any of these individual differences in the links between worry and occupation. This study suggests that it is important to go beyond group-level analyses and to account for individual differences in responses to COVID-19.
- Dynamic relationships
- Within-person effects