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Independent self-construal, self-reflection, and self-rumination : a path model for predicting happiness
journal contributionposted on 06.12.2017, 00:00 by Irina ElliottIrina Elliott, Suzanne CokerSuzanne Coker
A construal theory of happiness emphasises the mediating impact of cognitive and motivational processes on the individual’s perceptions of their happiness. This study investigated a path model with the two cognitive variables, self-reflection and self-ruminationas mediating factors between an independent self-construal and subjective happiness. One hundred and twenty three participants completed a questionnaire designed to measure subjective happiness, independent self-construal, self-reflection,and self-rumination. Individuals’ propensity to self-reflect and self-ruminate was not found to be affected by an independent self-construal. A higher independent self-construal was associated with greater happiness. The results also indicated that self-reflection has the potential to both increase and decrease (when mediated by self-rumination) subjective happiness. This study suggests that although meaningful self-reflection may be beneficial for individuals who do not enjoy high levels of happiness, the perils of self-reflection are that it may trigger self-rumination which has detrimental consequences for happiness.