Advertisement

Journal of Happiness Studies

, Volume 19, Issue 5, pp 1373–1393 | Cite as

Children’s Life Satisfaction: The Roles of Mothers’ Work Engagement and Recovery from Work

  • Saija MaunoEmail author
  • Riikka Hirvonen
  • Noona Kiuru
Research Paper

Abstract

The present study examines whether mothers’ positive work-related experiences, work engagement and recovery from work, are indirectly linked to their children’s life satisfaction via mothers’ perceived life satisfaction and closeness with their children. Theoretically the study is based on the spillover and crossover models of work–family interface with a particular focus on positive interface, as this is a gap in the existing research. The sample consisted of 671 Finnish mother–child dyads. Survey-based data were analyzed using structural equation modeling. The results showed that mothers’ work engagement and recovery from work were positively and indirectly associated with children’s life satisfaction via mothers’ life satisfaction and closeness with their children. The findings suggest that work-to-family crossover of positive work-related experiences does indeed occur from mothers to children. Employers should pay attention to mothers’ work engagement and recovery from work, because these positive work-related experiences are likely to promote mothers’ life satisfaction and a positive mother–child relationship which, in turn, may be reflected in children’s life satisfaction. Job resources and mental detachment from work while not working are vital for work engagement and recovery from work, and should be promoted.

Keywords

Spillover Crossover Work–family interface Mother–child dyad Work engagement Recovery from work Life satisfaction Closeness with the child 

Notes

Acknowledgements

This study was supported by the Academy of Finland, Grant Number 266851.

References

  1. Aunola, K., & Nurmi, J.-E. (2005). Maternal affection moderates the impact of psychological control on a child’s mathematical performance. Developmental Psychology, 40, 965–978.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  2. Aunola, K., Ruusunen, A., Viljaranta, J., & Nurmi, J.-E. (2015a). Parental affection and psychological control as mediators between parents depressive symptoms and child distress. Journal of Family Issues, 36, 1022–1042.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. Aunola, K., Tolvanen, A., Kiuru, N., Kaila, S., Mullola, S., & Nurmi, J.-E. (2015b). A person- oriented approach to diary data: Children´s temperamental negative emotionality increases susceptibility to emotion transmission in father-child-dyads. Journal of Person-Oriented Research, 1, 72–86.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. Bakker, A., & Demerouti, E. (2013). The spillover–crossover model. In J. Grzywacz & E. Demerouti (Eds.), New frontiers in work and family research (pp. 54–71). East Sussex: Routledge.Google Scholar
  5. Bakker, A., Demerouti, E., & Schaufeli, W. (2005). The crossover of burnout and engagement among couples. Human Relation, 58, 661–689.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  6. Bakker, A., Shimazu, A., Demerouti, E., Shimada, K., & Kawakami, N. (2013). Work engagement versus workaholism: A test of the spillover-crossover model. Journal of Managerial Psychology, 29, 63–80.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  7. Bakker, A., Westman, M., & van Emmerik, I. (2009). Advancement in crossover theory. Journal of Managerial Psychology, 24, 206–219.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  8. Barnett, R., & Hyde, J. (2001). Women, men, work and family: An expansionist theory. American Psychologist, 56, 781–796.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  9. Baruch, G., & Barnett, R. (1986). Role quality, role involvement, and psychological well-being in midlife women. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 51, 578–585.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  10. Bowlby, J. (1982). Attachment and loss: Vol. 1. Attachment (2nd). Basic Books: New York.Google Scholar
  11. Bradley, R., & Galdwell, B. (1995). Caregiving and the regulation of child growth and development: Describing proximal aspects of caregiving systems. Developmental Review, 15, 38–85.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  12. Bronfenbrenner, U., & Morris, P. (2006). The bioecological model of human development. In W. Damon & R. Lerner (Eds.), Handbook of child psychology (6th ed., pp. 739–828). New York: Wiley.Google Scholar
  13. Campbell, R., Goldstein, S., Schaefer, E., & Ramey, C. (1991). Parental beliefs and values related to family risk, educational intervention, and child academic competence. Early Childhood Research Quarterly, 6, 167–182.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  14. Chao, R., & Williams, J. (2002). The effects of parenting practices on children’s outcomes. In J. D. Williams (Ed.), Vulnerable children (pp. 149–166). Edmonton: University of Alberta Press.Google Scholar
  15. Clair, A. (2012). The relationship between parents’ subjective well-being and life satisfaction of their children in Britain. Child Indicators Research, 5, 631–650.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  16. Cooklin, A., Westrupp, E., Strazdins, L., Giallo, R., Martin, A., & Nicholson, J. (2014). Mothers’ work–family conflict and enrichment: Associations with parenting quality and couple relationships. Child: Care, Health and Development, 41, 266–277.Google Scholar
  17. Crouter, A., & Bumpus, M. (2001). Linking parents’ work stress to children’s and adolescents’. Current Directions in Psychological Science, 10, 156–159.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  18. Culbertson, S., Mills, M., & Fullagar, C. (2012). Work engagement and work–family facilitation: Making homes happier through positive affective spillover. Human Relations, 65, 1155–1177.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  19. Danner-Vlaardingelbroek, G., Kluwer, E., van Steenbergen, E., & van der Lippe, T. (2013). Knock, knock, anybody home? Psychological availability as link between work and relationship. Personnel Relationships, 20, 52–68.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  20. Demerouti, E., Bakker, A., & Sanz-Vergel, A. (2013). Recovery and work–family interface. In D. Major & R. Burke (Eds.), Handbook of work-life integration among professional: Challenges and opportunities (pp. 225–245). Cheltenham: Edgar Elgar Publishing.Google Scholar
  21. Diener, E. (1984). Subjective well-being. Psychological Bulletin, 95, 542–575.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  22. Diener, E., Emmons, R., Larsen, R., & Griffin, S. (1985). The Satisfaction With Life Scale. Journal of Personality Assessment, 49, 71–75.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  23. Diener, E., Suh, E., Lucas, R., & Smith, H. (1999). Subjective well-being: Three decades of progress. Psychological Bulletin, 125, 276–302.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  24. Driscoll, K., & Pianta, R. (2011). Mothers’ and fathers’ perceptions of conflict and closeness in parent-child relationships during early childhood. Journal of Early Childhood and Infant Psychology, 7, 1–24.Google Scholar
  25. Edwards, J., & Rothbard, N. (2000). Mechanisms linking work and family: Clarifying the relationship between work and family constructs. Academy of Management Review, 25, 178–199.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  26. Erdogan, B., Bauer, T., Truxillo, D., & Mansfield, L. (2012). Whistle while you work: A review of the life satisfaction literature. Journal of Management, 38, 1038–1083.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  27. Fritz, C., Sonnentag, S., Spector, P., & McInroe, J. (2010). The weekend matters: Relationships between stress recovery and affective experiences. Journal of Organizational Behavior, 31, 1137–1162.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  28. Galambos, N., Barker, E., & Almeida, D. (2003). Parents do matter: Trajectories of change in externalizing and internalizing problems in early adolescence. Child Development, 74, 578–594.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  29. Goodman, W., Crouter, A., Lanza, S., Cox, M., & Vernon-Feagans, L. (2011). Paternal work stress and latent profiles of father-infant parenting. Journal of Marriage and Family, 73, 588–604.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  30. Greenhaus, J., & Powell, C. (2006). When work and family are allies: A theory of work–family enrichment. Academy of Management Review, 31, 72–92.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  31. Greenhaus, J., & ten Brummelhuis, L. (2013). Models and frameworks underlying work-life research. In D. Major & R. Burke (Eds.), Handbook of work-life integration among professional: Challenges and opportunities (pp. 14–35). Cheltenham: Edgar Elgar Publishing.Google Scholar
  32. Halbesleben, J. (2010). A meta-analysis of work engagement: Relationships with burnout, demands, resources, and consequences. In A. Bakker & P. Leiter (Eds.), Work engagement: A handbook of essential theory and research (pp. 102–117). East Sussex: Psychology Press.Google Scholar
  33. Hatfield, E., Cacioppo, J., & Elliot, A. (1994). Emotion contagion. New York: Cambridge University Press.Google Scholar
  34. Hobfoll, S. (1989). Conservation of resources: A new attempt at conceptualizing stress. American Psychologist, 44, 513–524.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  35. Hobfoll, S. (2002). Social and psychological resources, and adaptation. Review of General Psychology, 6, 307–324.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  36. Hox, J., & Maas, C. (2002). Sample sizes for multilevel modeling. In J. Blasius et al. (Eds.), Social science methodology in the new millennium: Proceedings of the fifth international conference on logic and methodology (pp. 1–19). Opladen, RG: Leske + Budrich Verlag.Google Scholar
  37. Hoy, B., Suldo, S., & Mendez, L. (2013). Links between parents’ and children’s levels of gratitude, life satisfaction and hope. Journal of Happiness Studies, 14, 1343–1361.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  38. Hu, L., & Bentler, P. (1999). Cutoff criteria for fit indices in covariance structure analysis: Conventional criteria versus new alternatives. Structural Equation Modeling, 6, 1–55.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  39. Huebner, S. (1991). Correlates of life satisfaction in children. School Psychology Quarterly, 6, 103–111.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  40. Karatzias, A., Power, K., Flemming, J., Lennan, F., & Swanson, V. (2002). The role of demographics, personality variables and school stress on predicting school satisfaction/dissatisfaction: Review of the literature and research findings. Educational Psychology: An International Journal of Experimental Educational Psychology, 22, 33–50.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  41. Kinnunen, U., Feldt, T., Siltaloppi, M., & Sonnentag, S. (2011). Job demands-Resources Model in the context of recovery: Testing recovery experiences as mediators. European Journal of Work and Organizational Psychology, 20, 805–832.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  42. Kinnunen, U., Rantanen, J., & Mauno, S. (2013). Crossover and spillover between family members and work and family roles. In D. Major & R. Burke (Eds.), Handbook of work-life integration among professional: Challenges and opportunities (pp. 77–95). Cheltenham: Edgar Elgar Publishing.Google Scholar
  43. Kinnunen, U., Rantanen, J., Mauno, S., & Peeters, M. (2014). Work–family interaction. In M. Peeters, J. de Jonge, & T. Taris (Eds.), An introduction to contemporary work psychology (pp. 267–291). Chichester: Wiley.Google Scholar
  44. Lambert, S. (1990). Processes linking work and family: A critical review and research agenda. Human Relations, 43, 239–257.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  45. Landry, S., Smith, K., & Swank, P. (2006). Responsive parenting: Establishing early foundations for social, communication, and independent problem-solving skills. Developmental Psychology, 42, 627–642.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  46. Larson, R., & Almeida, D. (1999). Emotional transmission in the daily lives of families: A new paradigm for studying family process. Journal of Marriage and the Family, 61, 5–20.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  47. Lawson, K., Davis, K., McHale, S., et al. (2014). Daily positive spillover and crossover from mothers’ work to youth. Journal of Family Psychology, 28, 897–907.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  48. Leung, C., McBride-Chang, C., & Lai, B. (2004). Relations among maternal parenting style, academic competence, and life satisfaction in Chinese early adolescents. Journal of Early Adolescence, 24, 113–143.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  49. Lewis, A., Huebner, E., Malone, P., & Valois, R. (2011). Life satisfaction and student engagement in adolescents. Journal of Youth and Adolescence, 40, 249–263.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  50. Liu, H., & Cheug, F. (2015). The moderating role of empathy in the work–family crossover process between Chinese dual-earner couples. Journal of Career Assessment, 23, 442–458.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  51. Lyons, M., Otis, K., Huebner, E., & Hills, K. (2014). Life satisfaction and maladaptive behaviors in early adolescents. School Psychology Quarterly, 29, 553–566.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  52. MacKinnon, D., Lockwood, C., & Williams, J. (2004). Confidence limits for the indirect effect: Distribution of the product and resampling methods. Multivariate Behavioral Research, 39, 99–128.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  53. Marsh, H., Hau, K., & Wen, Z. (2004). In search of golden rules: Comment on hypothesis-testing approaches to setting cutoff values for fit indexes and dangers in overgeneralizing Hu and Bentler’s (1999) findings. Structural Equation Modeling: A Multidisciplinary Journal, 11, 320–341.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  54. Mauno, S., Kinnunen, U., Mäkikangas, A., & Feldt, T. (2010). Job demands and resources as antecedents of work engagement: a qualitative review and directions to future research. In S. Albrect (Ed.), Handbook of employee engagement (pp. 111–129). Cheltenham: Edward Elgar Publishing.Google Scholar
  55. Mauno, S., Kiuru, N., & Kinnunen, U. (2011). Relationships between work–family culture and work attitudes at both individual and the departmental level. Work and Stress, 25, 147–166.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  56. McCullough, G., Huebner, S., & Laughlin, J. (2000). Life events, self-concept, and adolescents’ positive subjective well-being. Psychology in the Schools, 37, 281–290.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  57. McLeod, V. (1998). Socioeconomic disadvantages and child development. American Psychologist, 53, 185–204.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  58. Menaghan, E., & Parcel, T. (1990). Parental employment and family life: Research in the 1980s. Journal of Marriage and the Family, 52, 1079–1098.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  59. Muthén, L., & Muthén, B. 1998–2012. Mplus user’s guide (7th ed.). Los Angeles, CA: Muthén and Muthén.Google Scholar
  60. Muthén, B., & Satorra, A. (1995). Complex sample data in structural equation modeling. Sociological Methodology, 25, 267–316.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  61. Niks, I., Gevers, J., De Jonge, J., & Houtman, I. (2016). The relation between off-job recovery and job resources: Person-level differences and day-level dynamics. European Journal of Work and Organizational Psychology, 25, 226–238.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  62. Official Statistics of Finland (2015a) Educational structure of population (e-publication). Helsinki, Finland: Statistics Finland [referred November 19, 2015]. Available online at www.stat.fi/til/vkour/2014/vkour_2014_2015-11-05_tie_001_en.html.
  63. Official Statistics of Finland (2015b) Families (e-publication). Appendix Table 3: Families with underage children by type in 1950–2014. Helsinki: Statistics Finland [referred November 19, 2015]. Available online at www.stat.fi/til/perh/2014/perh_2014_2015-05-28_tau_003_en.html.
  64. Park, N. (2004). The role of subjective well-being in positive youth development. The Annals of the American Academy, 591, 25–39.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  65. Park, Y., & Fritz, C. (2015). Spousal recovery support, recovery experiences, and life satisfaction crossover among dual-earner couples. Journal of Applied Psychology, 100, 557–566.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  66. Perry-Jenkins, M., Repetti, R., & Crouter, A. (2000). Work and family in the 1990s. Journal of Marriage and the Family, 62, 981–998.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  67. Proctor, C., Linley, P., & Maltby, J. (2009). Youth life satisfaction: A review of the literature. Journal of Happiness Studies, 10, 583–630.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  68. Repetti, R., & Wood, J. (1997). Effects of daily stress at work on mothers’ interaction with preschoolers. Journal of Family Psychology, 11, 90–108.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  69. Richards, M., & Huppert, F. (2011). Do positive children become positive adults? Evidence from a longitudinal birth cohort study. The Journal of Positive Psychology, 6, 75–87.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  70. Rodriguez-Munoz, A., Sanz-Vergel, A., Demerouti, E., & Bakker, A. (2014). Engaged at work and happy at home: A spillover-crossover model. Journal of Happiness Studies, 15, 271–283.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  71. Rosa, H. (2010). High speed society: Social acceleration, power and modernity. Pennsylvania: The Pennsylvania State University Press.Google Scholar
  72. Salmela-Aro, K., & Tuominen-Soini, H. (2010). Adolescents’ life satisfaction during transition to post-comprehensive education: Antecedents and consequences. Journal of Happiness Studies, 11, 683–701.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  73. Salmela-Aro, K., & Tynkkynen, L. (2010). Trajectories of life satisfaction across the transition to post-compulsory education: Do adolescents follow different pathways? Journal of Youth and Adolescence, 39, 870–881.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  74. Sanz-Vergel, A., Demerouti, E., Moreno-Jimenez, B., & Mayo, M. (2010). Work–family balance and energy: A day-level study on recovery conditions. Journal of Vocational Behavior, 76, 118–130.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  75. Schaufeli, W., Bakker, A., & Salanova, M. (2006). The measurement of work engagement with a short questionnaire: A cross-national study. Educational and Psychological Measurement, 66, 701–716.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  76. Schaufeli, W., & Salanova, M. (2010). How to improve work engagement? In S. Albrect (Ed.), Handbook of employee engagement (pp. 399–416). Cheltenham: Edward Elgar Publishing.Google Scholar
  77. Seppälä, P., Mauno, S., Feldt, T., Hakanen, J., Kinnunen, U., Tolvanen, A., et al. (2009). The construct validity of Utrecht Work Engagement Scale: Multisample and longitudinal evidence. Journal of Happiness Studies, 10, 459–481.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  78. Shockley, K., Thompson, C., & Andreassi, J. (2013). Workplace culture and work-life integration. In D. Major & R. Burke (Eds.), Handbook of work-life integration among professionals (pp. 310–333). Cheltenham: Edward Elgar Publishing.Google Scholar
  79. Sonnentag, S. (2001). Work, recovery activities, and individual well-being: A diary study. Journal of Occupational Health Psychology, 6, 196–210.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  80. Sonnentag, S., & Fritz, C. (2007). The recovery experience questionnaire: Development and validation of a measure for assessing recuperation and unwinding from work. Journal of Occupational Health Psychology, 12, 204–221.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  81. Statistics Finland (2011). Families and work in 2011. Labor force survey 2011. Statistics Finland. Google Scholar
  82. Suldo, M., & Huebner, E. (2004). The role of life satisfaction in the relationship between authoritative parenting dimensions and adolescent problem behavior. Social Indicators Research, 66, 165–195.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  83. Westman, M. (2001). Stress and strain crossover. Human Relations, 54, 717–751.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  84. Westman, M., Etzion, D., & Chen, S. (2009). Crossover of positive experiences from business travelers to their spouses. Journal of Managerial Psychology, 16, 169–181.Google Scholar
  85. Winwood, P., Winefield, A., Dawson, D., & Lushington, K. (2005). Development and validation of a scale to measure work-related fatigue and recovery: The occupational fatigue exhaustion/recovery scale (OFER). Journal of Occupational and Environmental Medicine, 47, 594–606.CrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of PsychologyUniversity of JyväskyläJyväskyläFinland
  2. 2.Faculty of Social Sciences (Psychology)University of TampereTampereFinland

Personalised recommendations