Warsaw School of Social Sciences and Humanities, Faculty in Sopot
The goal of our research was to describe the relationship between gratitude and subjective well-being. Participants (N=83), divided at random into three groups, filled out either the general Well-being Scale, or the Trust in People Scale, or the Scale of Social Relationships. Next, all participants described the most important experience of gratitude in their life; and estimated the amount of beneficiary experiences and gratitude they received in life. The results showed a positive relationship between the tendency to experience gratitude and express it, on one hand, and satisfaction with the past life, life in general, quality of social relationships and trust in people, on the other hand. No relationship was found between gratitude and present life satisfaction, expected future life and its specific aspects (partial satisfactions). It seems that the reason for the inconsistent results are differences in the psychological status of measures of well-being used in the study. Research shows (see Schwarz and Strack, 1999) that evaluations of the present and future life and evaluations of specific areas of life are verbalized ad hoc and are context-dependent, whereas evaluations of past life and life as a whole have a more established character.
Keywords: gratitude, positive emotions, subjective well-being, social relationships
Cite this article as:
Gruszecka, E. (2011). Gratitude and subjective well-being. Psychologia Społeczna, 19, 316-329.