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Two studies tested a model in which passion for work predicts psychological adjustment to retirement through the satisfaction of basic psychological needs. With a sample of 103 French-Canadian retirees from a variety of occupations, the first study used a retrospective cross-sectional design. The second study followed 73 French-Canadian teachers over a 6-year period and examined the relationship between passion for work, assessed when participants were still working, and psychological adjustment to retirement, measured when participants were retired. All participants completed questionnaires on demographics, passion for work, basic psychological needs and psychological adjustment to retirement. Results from structural equation modeling confirmed the hypothesized model, such that both studies confirmed the mediating role of basic psychological need satisfaction in the passion–psychological adjustment to retirement relationship. Need satisfaction significantly mediated the relationship between harmonious passion for work and psychological adjustment to retirement in Studies 1 and 2. The mediation was also confirmed between obsessive passion and psychological adjustment to retirement in Study 1, but not in Study 2. These findings suggest that passion for work matters in psychological adjustment to retirement. Being passionate about work can thus lead to positive or negative outcomes in retirement, depending on whether the passion is harmonious or obsessive, respectively.


Institute for Positive Psychology and Education

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Journal Article

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