Promoting Subjective Well-Being

Shannon M. Suldo, E. Scott Huebner, Jessica Savage and Amanda Thalji

in The Oxford Handbook of School Psychology

Published in print February 2011 | ISBN: 9780195369809
Published online November 2012 | | DOI:

Series: Oxford Library of Psychology

 Promoting Subjective Well-Being

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Considerable research has investigated the relationship between positive emotions and attitudes (i.e., subjective well-being) and important life processes and outcomes among adults. Although the specific nature of the mechanisms that account for linkages between subjective well-being (SWB) and its consequences remains to be clarified, researchers have demonstrated strong links between adults’ positive SWB and important outcomes in a variety of contexts. For example, SWB has been found to facilitate good interpersonal behavior and relationships, job performance, creativity, physical health, and even a longer life (Lyubormirsky, King, & Diener, 2005). Furthermore, most people report that high SWB is desirable in and of itself (Diener & Oishi, 2006). Finally, King ( 2008 ) argues cogently that the desire to maintain SWB promotes personal growth through the revision of goals and behavior in response to the loss of SWB during adverse life circumstances. Lyubomirsky ( 2007 ) concludes that “empowering people to develop a positive state of mind—to live the most rewarding and happiest lives that they can—is just as important as psychology’s traditional focus on repairing their weakness and healing their pathologies” (p. 3). The purposes of this chapter are thus threefold. First, we review the extant research on the benefits of positive SWB in youth. Second, we discuss strategies and interventions to promote SWB in youth. Finally, we discuss implications for future research and practice efforts.

Keywords: school psychology; subjective well-being; adolescents; interventions

Article.  14463 words. 

Subjects: Psychology ; Educational Psychology

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