The hedonic and eudaimonic approaches to wellbeing
|Hedonic approach||Eudaimonic approach|
|Wellbeing is the presence of positive affect, and the absence of negative affect||Wellbeing is focused on meaning and self-realisation (an individual’s ability to realise their own unique potential)|
The hedonic approachThe hedonic approach originated with the Greek philosopher Aristippus, who asserted that the goal of life was to experience maximum pleasure, while avoiding pain. More recently, Kahneman (1999: ix) asserted that hedonic psychology was the study of what:
Kahneman (1999) argues that hedonic pleasure and pain governs an individual’s life, by providing information on what we should do, and determining what we actually do.‘…makes experiences and life pleasant and unpleasant, and is concerned with feelings of pleasure and pain, of interest and boredom, of joy and sorrow, and of satisfaction and dissatisfaction.’Kahneman (1999: ix)
Want to keep
Coventry University online course,
Wellbeing at Work: An Introduction
The eudaimonic approachThe eudaimonic approach also originated in Greece, deriving from Aristotle’s view of human nature that a person’s wellbeing is dependent on their achieving their potential. Ryan, Huta and Deci (2008) argue that wellbeing does not consist of maximising positive experiences and minimising negative ones, but refers instead to living fully, to allow for the richest possible human potential.
The six-factor model of psychological wellbeingOne such model that employs a eudaimonic approach to psychological wellbeing is the six-factor model of psychological wellbeing (Ryff and Sarason 1989). This model posits that there are six factors which contribute to an individual’s wellbeing:
- Positive relations with others
- Sense of purpose
- Personal growth
- Environmental mastery
Reminder!Online texts from locate.coventry.ac.uk will only be available to students who have signed up to take all the courses in the Program Work and Wellbeing. Deci, E. L., Ryan, R. M. (2008) ‘Hedonia, Eudaimonia and Well-being: An Introduction’. Journal of Happiness [online] 9, 1-11. available from https://locate.coventry.ac.uk/primo-explore/fulldisplay?docid=TN_springer_jour10.1007/s10902-006-9018-1&context=PC&vid=COV_VU1&search_scope=Primo_Central&tab=remote&lang=en_US [10th May 2019] Diener, E., Suh, E. (1997) ‘Measuring Quality of Life: Economic, Social, and Subjective Indicators’. Social Indicators Research [online] 40 (1/2). 189-216. available from https://locate.coventry.ac.uk/primo-explore/fulldisplay?docid=TN_springer_jour1006859511756&context=PC&vid=COV_VU1&search_scope=Primo_Central&tab=remote&lang=en_US [10th May 2019] Dodge, R., Daly, A. P., Huyton, J., Sanders, L. D. (2012) ‘The Challenge of Defining Wellbeing’ International Journal of Wellbeing [online] 2 (3). available from https://internationaljournalofwellbeing.org/index.php/ijow/article/view/89 [28 March 2019] Kahneman, D., Diener, E. (1999) Well-being: Foundations of Hedonic Psychology. New York: Russell Sage Foundation Chapter One: Objective Happiness Ryff, C. D., Sarason, I. G. (1989) ‘Happiness is Everything, or Is It? Explorations on the Meaning of Psychological Well-Being’. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology [online] 57 (6) 1069–1081. available from https://locate.coventry.ac.uk/primo-explore/fulldisplay?docid=TN_proquest57763919&context=PC&vid=COV_VU1&search_scope=Primo_Central&tab=remote&lang=en_US [10th May 2019]
Wellbeing at Work: An Introduction
Our purpose is to transform access to education.
We offer a diverse selection of courses from leading universities and cultural institutions from around the world. These are delivered one step at a time, and are accessible on mobile, tablet and desktop, so you can fit learning around your life.
We believe learning should be an enjoyable, social experience, so our courses offer the opportunity to discuss what you’re learning with others as you go, helping you make fresh discoveries and form new ideas.
You can unlock new opportunities with unlimited access to hundreds of online short courses for a year by subscribing to our Unlimited package. Build your knowledge with top universities and organisations.