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On Health, Happiness and Meaning: Meaningfulness Predicts Health, Mediated by Subjective Well-Being
Umeå University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Psychology.
2015 (English)Independent thesis Basic level (degree of Bachelor), 10 credits / 15 HE creditsStudent thesis
Abstract [en]

A new direction of intent is needed with regards to the understanding of human health, happiness and meaning. The contextual framework for learning of the causes and determinants of health and well-being has been laid out as expressed by the salutogenic health perspective, Antonovsky’s sense of coherence theory (SOC) and the currently evolving positive psychology field. The present study investigated the hypothesis that meaningfulness predicts health, with the two subjective well-being (SWB) components, affective well-being and life satisfaction, as joint mediators. Cross-sectional research design was used, analysing a sample representative of the Swedish population (n = 1628). Fifty-two percent were women and the mean age was 51.19 (SD = 17.73, age range 16–85). Mediation analysis revealed meaningfulness as a significant predictor of health, as well as a significant partial mediating effect of the two SWB variables. Suggestions for further research include meaningfulness in conjunction with affective experience proposed as main components of a more comprehensive dimension and view of human health and well-being.

Abstract [sv]

Det finns ett behov av ett förnyat perspektiv vad gäller vår förståelse för mänsklig hälsa, lycka och mening. Det kontextuella ramverket för att närma sig hälsans orsaker och bestämningsfaktorer har lagts fram, bland annat i form av det salutogena hälsoperspektivet, Antonovskys teori om känsla av sammanhang (KASAM), samt genom det relativt nya forskningsområdet positiv psykologi. Denna studie undersökte hypotesen att meningsfullhet predicerar hälsa, med det subjektiva välbefinnandets två komponenter, affektivt välbefinnande och livstillfredsställelse, som gemensamma mediatorer. Studien baserades på tvärsnittsdata och analyserade ett stickprov representativt för den svenska befolkningen (n = 1628). Femtiotvå procent var kvinnor och medelåldern var 51.19 (SD = 17.73, åldersspann 16–85). Medieringsanalysen påvisade meningsfullhet som en signifikant prediktor för hälsa, samt en signifikant partiell medieringseffekt för de två subjektiva välbefinnandevariablerna. Förslag för framtida forskning inkluderar meningsfullhet tillsammans med affektiv upplevelse som utgörande huvudsakliga komponenter i ett mer helhetligt synsätt på mänsklig hälsa och mänskligt välbefinnande.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2015.
Keyword [en]
health, meaningfulness, meaning in life, happiness, subjective well-being, affective well-being, life satisfaction, sense of coherence, SOC, existential psychology, positive psychology, mediation
National Category
Psychology
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:umu:diva-118180OAI: oai:DiVA.org:umu-118180DiVA: diva2:911805
Subject / course
Examensarbete i psykologi
Supervisors
Examiners
Available from: 2016-03-15 Created: 2016-03-14 Last updated: 2016-03-15Bibliographically approved

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