An examination of the relationship between passion and subjective well-being in older adults

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Activity engagement has long been linked to improved subjective well-being (SWB) in old age. However, recent studies testing Vallerand et al.'s (2003) Dualistic Model of Passion suggest that the type of passionate activity that underlies activity engagement might influence the extent to which individuals benefit from an active lifestyle. In the present article we examined the relationship between harmonious and obsessive passionate activities and subjective well-being in older adults. Results showed that harmonious passion, through its influence on positive affect experienced during activity engagement, is associated with increases in SWB, whereas obsessive passion is associated with decreases in SWB. Engagement in passionate activities might be beneficial for older adults when a passionate activity is harmonious, but detrimental when a passionate activity is obsessive.


Institute for Positive Psychology and Education

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Journal Article

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