Gratitude and well-being: a review and theoretical integration

Wood, Alex M., Froh, Jeffrey J. and Geraghty, Adam W.A. (2010) Gratitude and well-being: a review and theoretical integration. Clinical Psychology Review , 30, (7), 890-905. (doi:10.1016/j.cpr.2010.03.005). (PMID:20451313).


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This paper presents a new model of gratitude as a "life orientation towards noticing and appreciating the positive in life", incorporating not only the gratitude that arises following help from others, but also a habitual focusing on and appreciating the positive aspects of life. Research into individual differences in gratitude and well-being is reviewed, including gratitude and psychopathology, personality, relationships, health, subjective and eudemonic well-being, and humanistically orientated functioning. Gratitude is strongly related to well-being, however defined, and this link may be unique and causal. Interventions to clinically increase gratitude are critically reviewed, and concluded to be promising, although the positive psychology literature may have neglected current limitations, and a distinct research strategy is suggested. Finally, mechanisms whereby gratitude may relate to well-being are discussed, including schematic biases, coping, positive affect, and broaden-and-build principles. Gratitude is relevant to clinical psychology due to (a) strong explanatory power in understanding well-being, and (b) the potential of improving well-being through fostering gratitude with simple exercises

Item Type: Article
Digital Object Identifier (DOI): doi:10.1016/j.cpr.2010.03.005
ISSNs: 0272-7358 (electronic)
Keywords: gratitude, depression, well-being, positive psychology, intervention, post-traumatic growth
Subjects: B Philosophy. Psychology. Religion > BF Psychology
Divisions : University Structure - Pre August 2011 > School of Psychology > Division of Human Wellbeing
Faculty of Medicine > Primary Care and Population Sciences
ePrint ID: 146043
Accepted Date and Publication Date:
20 March 2010Published
Date Deposited: 20 Apr 2010 13:10
Last Modified: 31 Mar 2016 13:20

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