A multi-national study of satisfaction with one’s life to date using Big Five predictors in national cultures socializing children for different qualities

Michael Harris Bond, Vivian Miu Chi Lun

Research output: Chapter in book / Conference proceedingChapter in an edited book (as author)Academic researchpeer-review


Satisfaction with one’s life to date (SWOLD) may be regarded as a cognitive assessment of how well persons have accommodated themselves to the socialization demands in their current life space. Success in this accommodation will depend in part upon the personality resources that each person can bring to bear in the cultural niche into which they were thrown by the fatedness of their birth. These issues were addressed by extracting measures of the Big Five personality dimensions and socialization goals for children from the responses of representative samples of over 34,000 citizens from 23 nations in Wave 6 of the World Values Survey. It was expected and found that the personality resources of Conscientiousness and Emotional Stability predicted SWOLD pan-nationally. However, the strength of the effect of Conscientiousness varied depending on the culture of a nation’s socialization of its children for different qualities. The relationship between Conscientiousness and SWOLD was stronger in nations socializing children for Self-Directedness as opposed to Other-Directedness. Results from this analysis were discussed in term of how personality resources promote successful adaptation to life and to certain socialization environments as a consequence of the social-psychological presses for right conduct characterizing those national niches for the development of social capital. Throughout this essay, we will try to relate this recent multi-national research to the corpus of Paul Wong’s writing on indigenous and crosscultural models of positive psychology Chinese people.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationThe new science of happiness through suffering: A celebration of Dr. Paul T. P. Wong’s achievement in developing existential positive psychology
Publication statusPublished - Sep 2020

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