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What Kind of People are the Happiest? An Empirical Study

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Abstract

This research aims to study the relationship between personality traits and happiness. In research analytical model, extraversion, neuroticism, agreeableness, Openness to experience and conscientiousness are independent variables and dependent variable is happiness. To clarify the relationships among the research variables, structural equation modelling (SEM) was conducted to examine the model fit and hypotheses. Findings show that extraversion, agreeableness and conscientiousness impact positively on happiness, while Neuroticism and openness impact negatively on happiness.

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... De esta manera, las personas con pensamientos positivos han mostrado una mayor tendencia a incurrir en situaciones o escenarios novedosos, a la vez que se encuentran más involucrados con el trabajo. En definitiva, son personas sanas y más exitosas en su vida laboral, lo que impacta positivamente en las metas de sus organizaciones (Momeni, Kalali, Anvari, Raoofi, & Zarrineh, 2011). A su vez, la felicidad en el trabajo presenta al mundo como un lugar más seguro y permite que los individuos tomen decisiones libremente y disfruten de una vida más sana (Dehaghi, 2012). ...
... A su vez, los procesos mentales pueden ser divididos en características a largo plazo (aspectos disposicionales o demográficos) y las características a más corto plazo (la forma de afrontar y pensar en situaciones concretas). Con respecto a las primeras, rasgos de personalidad tales como la extraversión, la responsabilidad y la agradabilidad (Momeni et al., 2011) se relacionan significativamente con indicadores de felicidad. En cuanto a las segundas, la felicidad se encuentra determinada, parcialmente, por los juicios comparativos, la preocupación sobre quién soy y quién me gustaría ser, cómo será el futuro y por la evaluación relacionada con la autoeficacia, la novedad y la relevancia personal (Warr, 2013). ...
... Happiness promotes relationships, and relationships increase happiness. Momeni et al. (2011) found that happy people are kind and tend to help others when they need it, they have the ability to persist, in addition to be highly qualified and they can deal with the different life conditions and pressures effectively . ...
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This study aimed to identify the relationship between adaptation, family cohesion and happiness among tenth grade students in Irbid Governorate, and to gauge the differences between them according to gender, the level of mother’s education, and the level of father’s education, based on a sample of (381) students. The results of the study showed that there was a positive statistically significant relationship between adaptation, family cohesion, and degrees of happiness. The result also showed that there were statistically significant differences in feeling happy attributable to the gender variable and the level of the father's education, in favor of male variable whose educational level is less than the secondary education. The results showed that there were statistically significant differences attributable to the gender variable in family adaptation, and the differences were in favor of males. And there were statistically significant differences attributable to the variable level of mother’s education in family adaptation; as well as there were statistically significant differences attributed to the variable level of father’s education in all fields. The results showed that there was a statistically significant effect of happiness on cohesion and family adaptation, which means that increase degree in happiness, will lead to an increase in family cohesion and adaptation by (0.0806).
... Therefore, happiness and selfesteem, as dispositional resources, not only impact individuals' health, but also how individuals respond to their working environment, activating further resources to face the challenges of their workplace (Sutton et al., 2009). There is evidence to prove that people with positive thoughts are healthier and more successful in their working life; they are more productive and efficient, generating a competitive advantage for their organizations (Momeni et al., 2011). Therefore, it can be hypothesized that happiness and self-esteem, as dispositional traits, may be linked with happiness in the workplace, namely teachers' happiness at work. ...
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The present study aims to expand the understanding of the effects of dispositional happiness and self-esteem, as dispositional traits, on the health of teachers, as well as to understand the role played by the working environment in generating positive affection, thus mediating between the dispositional traits and teachers' health. Two hundred and eighty-two full-time in-service teachers (93.6% female) from Rome (Italy) took part in this study. Their ages ranged from 26 to 55 (M = 40.49 years, SD = 5.93). Participants' teaching experience ranged from 1 to 31 years (M = 9.95 years, SD = 5.65). 30.6% of participants taught in kindergarten (for children aged 0-5 years), 42.6% in primary schools (for children aged 6-11 years), 15.8% in middle schools and 10.9% in high schools. A questionnaire was administered, containing: the Subjective Happiness Scale (SHS); the Rosenberg Self-Esteem Scale (RSES); The adapted version for teachers of the School Children Happiness Inventory (Ivens, 2007); the Physical and Mental Health Scales (SF12). The data were analyzed using the MPLUS software, version 8. Our results showed that teacher happiness at work partially mediates the relationship between dispositional happiness and teacher health, and fully mediates the relationship between self-esteem and teacher health. To the best of our knowledge, the mediational role of teacher happiness has not been addressed before, concerning these dimensions. At the same time, our findings confirmed the role of self-esteem in endorsing health-related behaviors, thus promoting physical and mental health. Moreover, according to our study findings, when teachers acknowledge their workplace as a context in which they feel happy, the impact of dispositional happiness and self-esteem on health conditions is higher. Effective measures to promote teachers' well-being are discussed.
... dies have also shown similar findings. For instance, Tkach and Lyubomirsky (2006) show that in a sample (n ¼500) of U.S. college students, happiness is positively related to Extraversion and negatively related to Neuroticism (the negative expression of Emotional Stability) where these traits are measured by the big Five Inventory (John et al., 1991). Momeni et al. (2011report that among a sample of 274 Iranian college students, happiness is related positively to the NEO-PI measures of Extraversion and negatively related to Neuroticism. Another Iranian study (Pishva et al., 2011), this time with adult participants (n¼ 150) and using the Eysenck Personality Questionnaire measures, shows a similar positiv ...
This study assessed the relationships between the Big Five dimensions of personality and individual happiness with three indicators of shopping and spending for non-grocery items using a sample of 660 U.S. adults. The data from an online survey showed that all five of the Big Five traits correlated positively with self-reported happiness, even controlling for the effects of age and gender. Regression analysis showed, however, that the positive relationships between happiness and Agreeableness and Openness to Experience were no longer significant, indicating that they are real, but redundant to the other traits. The correlations also showed that happiness, Openness to Experience, and Extraversion correlated positively with the three shopping indicators. Finally, happiness appears to have a direct effect with shopping and mediates the influence of Emotional Stability, Agreeableness, and Extraversion on happiness.
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According to Ryan and Deci (2001), research into well-being has focused on pleasure and pain (hedonic well-being) or meaning and self-actualization (eudaimonic well-being); little research has combined the two perspectives. Using a sample of 271 college students, we found that extraversion and neuroticism, hedonic factors, were strongly related to happiness, but personal strivings, eudaimonic factors, were unrelated, thus providing support for the hedonic view. Future research should study hedonic and eudaimonic well-being simultaneously.
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The Oxford Happiness Inventory and the short form Revised Eysenck Personality Questionnaire were completed by 121 male and 335 female students in Wales. The findings confirm the internal reliability of the Oxford Happiness Inventory and support the view that happiness is a thing called stable extraversion.
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Happiness, or subjective well-being, was measured on a brith-record-based sample of several thousand middle-aged twins using the Well-Being (WB)scale of the Multidimensional Personality Questionnare. Neither socioeconomic status, educational attainment, family income, marital status, nor an indicant of religious commitment could acciunt for more than about 3% of the variance in WB. From 44% to 52% of the variance in WB, however, is associated with genetic variation. Based on the retest os smaller samples of twins after intervals of 4.5 and 10 years, we estimate that the heritability of the stable component of subjective well-being approaches 80%.
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This study assesses the trends and differentials in length of quality life in the U.S. population as measured by happy life expectancy in 1970, 1980, 1990, and 2000. The analysis combines age-specific prevalence rates of subjective well-being from a large nationally representative survey and life table estimates of mortality in decennial Census years. Employing the period prevalence-rate life table method--Sullivan method, the analysis finds evidence for improvement in quality of life in the U.S. Happy life expectancy largely increased in both absolute terms (number of years) and relative terms (proportion of life) over time at all adult ages examined. And increases in total life expectancy were mainly contributed by increases in expectancy in happy years rather than unhappy years. Happy life expectancy is longer than active life expectancy. And there has been greater compression of unhappiness than compression of morbidity. There are substantial differentials in happy life expectancy by sex and race because of differential prevalence rates of happiness. Women and whites had longer years of total and happy life expectancies at most ages and dates, while men and blacks had greater proportions of happy life expectancies across the three decades. Although race differentials generally decreased at older ages and with time, relative disadvantages of blacks persisted.
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Over 100 subjects completed the Eysenck Personality Questionnaire and the Oxford Happiness Inventory. The results showed a predicted positive correlation between happiness and extraversion (r = 0.55, P < 0.001) and negative correlation between happiness and neuroticism (r = 0.43, P < 0.001). The results provide confirmatory evidence of previous research as well as validation for the happiness inventory.
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New studies are revealing predictors of subjective well-being, often assessed as self-reported happiness and life satisfaction. Worldwide, most people report being at least moderately happy, regardless of age and gender. As part of their scientific pursuit of happiness, researchers have examined possible associations between happiness and (a) economic growth and personal income, (b) close relationships, and (c) religious faith.
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Recent theoretical discussions of optimism as an inherent aspect of human nature converge with empirical investigations of optimism as an individual difference to show that optimism can be a highly beneficial psychological characteristic linked to good mood, perseverance, achievement, and physical health. Questions remain about optimism as a research topic and more generally as a societal value. Is the meaning of optimism richer than its current conceptualization in cognitive terms? Are optimism and pessimism mutually exclusive? What is the relationship between optimism and reality, and what are the costs of optimistic beliefs that prove to be wrong? How can optimism be cultivated? How does optimism play itself out across different cultures? Optimism promises to be one of the important topics of interest to positive social science, as long as it is approached in an even-handed way.
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Mental disorders are associated with disability, but the long-term effects of low subjective well-being on work ability in general population are not known. In this study we investigated whether self-reported life dissatisfaction predicts work disability. A nationwide sample of Finnish twins aged 18-54 years (N = 22,136), unselected for health status responded to a health questionnaire with a four-item life satisfaction scale (range 4-20) covering interest, happiness, easiness and loneliness of life in 1975 and 1981. Cox regression for all subjects and conditional logistic regression for discordant twin pairs were used to compare the risk of subsequent work disability (N = 1200) (Nationwide Disability Register) between the dissatisfied and satisfied. Life dissatisfaction predicted subsequent (1977-87) work disability pension due to psychiatric and non-psychiatric causes among the healthy at baseline, and that due to psychiatric causes among the ill. After controlling for age, marital status, social class and health behaviour, these risks remained significant. Repeatedly reported (1975 and 1981) life dissatisfaction was strongly associated with increased (age-adjusted) risk of subsequent (1982-87) work disability due to psychiatric and also that due to non-psychiatric causes among the healthy. When twin pairs discordant for end-point disability status were analysed, risk differences related to life satisfaction were only slightly decreased, but they did not differ significantly between monozygotic and dizygotic pairs. Life dissatisfaction predicts subsequent work disability especially among the healthy.
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Today, as in the past, within a country at a given time those with higher incomes are, on average, happier. However, raising the incomes of all does not increase the happiness of all. This is because the material norms on which judgments of well-being are based increase in the same proportion as the actual income of the society. These conclusions are suggested by data on reported happiness, material norms, and income collected in surveys in a number of countries over the past half century.
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Using an infrequently used sample of 60 countries this paper attempts to gauge the importance of religion and gender on the levels of happiness across countries, after controlling for a set of quality of life variables. The results suggest that both religion which is represented by the degree of religious fractionalization, and gender as represented by the percentage of women in parliament, have important effects on the degree of happiness. Specifically the paper finds that higher levels of religious fractionalization reduce happiness, but greater representation of women in parliament robustly increase happiness levels.
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In this paper it is argued that subjective well-being of the individual depends on two types of variables. The first type consists of characteristics of the individual himself, such as age, health, income, etc. The second type of variables consists of the characteristics of the individuals belonging to his reference group. The vast literature about happiness, quality of life, and well-being informs us extensively about the effects of objective variables. How the second type affects well-being is much less investigated. It is argued that the concept of well-being inequality cannot be properly defined without taking the referencing process into account. The reference effect depends on how frequently individuals compare with others and on the degree of social transparency in society. We attempt to give a structural embedding of the idea of reference groups in SWB-models. In this paper we employ the reference-extended model for incorporating in happiness studies the concept of inequality in happiness or SWB.
Long and happy living: Trends and patterns of happy life expectancy in the U
Yang, Y 2008, 'Long and happy living: Trends and patterns of happy life expectancy in the U.S. 1970–2000', Social Science Research, 37, 1235–125.
Testing for stress and happiness: the role of social and cognitive factors
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