Subjective temporal trajectories for subjective well-being

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Subjective temporal trajectories for subjective well-being

Based on Diener’s (Diener E. (1984). Subjective well-being. Psychological Bulletin 95 542–575.) tripartite model of subjective well-being (SWB) subjective evaluations of past present and anticipated future life satisfaction (LS) positive affect (PA) and negative affect (NA) were evaluated in a cross-sectional undergraduate sample.  Upward mean trends in subjective trajectories (past5present5future) were typical on average for each SWB component. As predicted higher levels of present SWB were aligned with greater positive psychological physical and interpersonal functioning. In contrast steeper upward subjective SWB trajectories were associated with greater distress and dysfunction. Of the three SWB components unique links with indicators of functioning were most consistent for LS trajectories. We conclude that a temporally expanded conceptualization of SWB spanning subjective assessments of past present and anticipated future LS PA and NA provides a rich framework for studying the structure of SWB and the significance of how people perceive their well-being to be unfolding over time.

The Journal of Positive Psychology Volume 7, Issue 1, 2012, 1-15

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