University of Cambridge > Talks.cam > Faculty of Education Research Students' Association (FERSA) Lunchtime Seminars 2014-2015 > Well-being: What makes you happy and fulfilled?

Well-being: What makes you happy and fulfilled?

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Despite the multifarious conceptualisation and operationalisation of the construct, most researchers agree that well-being indicates “optimal psychological functioning and experience” in life (Ryan & Deci, 2001, p. 141). There are two philosophical traditions in the research of well-being, namely hedonism and eudaimonism. The former tradition highlights happiness in life, constructing well-being as affective and cognitive evaluation of life satisfaction (Diener, 2012). On the other hand, eudaimonic theorists draw people’s attention to a sense of meaning and fulfillment in life (Deci & Ryan, 2008). They argue that besides pleasant and satisfactory experiences, it is also important to fulfill people’s needs of personal growth and mastery. This presentation will start with a critical review of theories and corresponding empirical research of well-being in both traditions. Then, findings of one recent survey research with Chinese adolescents will be presented. The presentation will end with a discussion about future research directions.

This talk is part of the Faculty of Education Research Students' Association (FERSA) Lunchtime Seminars 2014-2015 series.

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