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Research, from the Psychology department at the University of Chester, UK, published in the MENTAL WELLNESS academic journal this month (Oct 2023) sheds valuable light on the difference between mental toughness and resilience and their relative strengths as predictors of anxiety, depression and mental well-being.

The authors note: “The findings show that in a non-clinical population, mental toughness is more strongly predictive of good mental health than resilience. If our psychometrically based observations translate into real-world outcomes, then promoting mental toughness via training or coaching may provide real mental health benefits.”

And they add.

“The findings suggest that training and interventions that enhance mental toughness in non-clinical populations may be more effective at promoting mental well-being and reducing anxiety and depression than those that enhance resilience.”

This adds real evidence to an increasing body of real evidence for understanding that mental toughness is not resilience with which it is often confused. It embraces resilience and adds factors relating to positivity and optimism. And it has an important role to play in wellbeing and good mental health.

Usefully there is now a valid and reliable psychometric measure of mental toughness and its factors – the MTQPlus. Enabling practitioners of all types to assess their client’s mental toughness approach as the first diagnostic step to guiding them to good mental health.

The MTQPLus is the expanded version of the 10-item measure used in the study and provides a more detailed analysis.

The paper can be found here:


For more information about the mental toughness concept and the mental toughness measure – MTQPlus contact: or see the MTQ Explanatory Note

For information about becoming a licensed user of the MTQ suite of measures contact:

The MTQPlus measure is available in fourteen languages, accessible to more than 2/3rds of the world’s population.

Completion of the AQR Licensed user training programme is recognised by EMCC and ICF for CPD purposes.

The full eight-factor 4Cs mental toughness concept is shown below: