How Does More Attention to Subjective Well-Being Affect Subjective Well-Being?

Kai Ludwigs & Richard Lucas & Martijn Burger& Ruut Veenhoven & Lidia Arends
Applied Research On Quality of Life, online since 03/12/17

There is an ongoing debate as to whether pursuing happiness is beneficial for people’s subjective well-being (SWB). To address this question, we tested whether
attention to SWB – measured by participation in SWB surveys – is related to experienced SWB in two longitudinal studies. The initial study was conducted from November
to December 2013 (N = 129), and the replication study, three years later from November to December 2016 (N = 120). The studies include two groups: one group
(the control group) answered three SWB surveys over 4 weeks, and the other group (the experimental group) followed the same procedure but additionally tracked their SWB
in detail using the experience sampling method four times a day and the day reconstruction method once a day using a smartphone application for two weeks to heighten
their attention to their SWB. Both studies show higher SWB scores at later measurements compared to the first ones.

Keywords Attention . SubjectiveWell-Being (SWB) . Experience Sampling Method (ESM) . Day ReconstructionMethod (DRM) . Mobile Application

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