Developing conceptual models of psychosocial well-being: pursuing better health outcomes

Courtney, Lyn G., Caltabiano, Nerina J., and Caltabiano, Marie L. (2013) Developing conceptual models of psychosocial well-being: pursuing better health outcomes. In: Caltabiano, Marie L., and Ricciardelli, Lina A., (eds.) Applied Topics in Health Psychology. Wiley-Blackwell, Chichester, UK, pp. 112-133.

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Subjective wellbeing (SWB), often referred to as quality of life (QOL) or satisfaction with life, is a predictor of better mental health, improved overall health, superior prognosis in times of illness, reduced mortality, and increased longevity (Diener & Chan, 2011; Seligman, 2008). For more than four decades, the theoretical structure of SWB has been subjected to extensive empirical investigation in order to determine the dimensions that comprise SWB (see review Diener et al., 2009). However, the study of SWB is considered to be in its formative stages with little consensus on the theoretical structure, composition, conceptual characteristics, measurement, and consequences of SWB.

This chapter has four objectives. First, this chapter will introduce SWB within a positive psychology framework (Seligman 1998, 2003) and the emerging field of positive health (Seligman, 2008). Next, to provide the context from which the field of SWB has emerged, a brief review of QOL and wellbeing is presented. Third, we will compare and contrast four well-established models and measures of SWB in order to elucidate some of the challenges that need to be resolved by SWB researchers. Finally, this chapter will present an argument for viewing SBW from an integrative, holistic perspective that takes into account the differing life contexts, histories, experiences, beliefs, values, perceptions, and expectations of subpopulations (e.g., gender, age, personality, culture). A holistic perspective of SWB would incorporate factors that have recently been shown to contribute to SWB, such as spirituality/religiosity (e.g.,McCullough et al., 2000; Strawbridge et al., 2001), generativity (e.g., An & Cooney, 2006; Cheng, 2009), and autonomy (e.g., Deci & Ryan, 2008). Precise, targeted conceptual models of SWB may facilitate the development of interventions that promote and enhance physical and psychosocial health.

Item ID: 23425
Item Type: Book Chapter (Research - B1)
ISBN: 978-1-119-97193-1
Date Deposited: 05 Dec 2012 05:47
FoR Codes: 17 PSYCHOLOGY AND COGNITIVE SCIENCES > 1701 Psychology > 170106 Health, Clinical and Counselling Psychology @ 100%
SEO Codes: 92 HEALTH > 9204 Public Health (excl. Specific Population Health) > 920408 Health Status (e.g. Indicators of Well-Being) @ 100%
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