Applied Research in Quality of Life

, Volume 9, Issue 3, pp 643–665 | Cite as

Can Becoming My Self Influence My Health?: Exploring the Effects of a Eudaimonic-Enhancement Process on Psychological Indicators of Well-Being and Physical Activity

  • Patrick Lewis
  • Jay KimiecikEmail author
  • Thelma Horn
  • Keith J. Zullig
  • Rose Marie Ward


The current study adopts an intervention approach that begins with the assumption that the quality of a person’s lived experience is at the core of well-being and health behavior change. Specifically, the present study used a well-being enhancement process grounded in eudaimonia to explore the connection among eudaimonia, indicators of psychological well-being (i.e., personal growth, subjective vitality, self-determination, and life engagement), and physical activity. Participants in the intervention group engaged in 8 weekly, group eudaimonic well-being enhancement (the Well-Being Way, WBW) sessions with assessments at Weeks 1, 8, and 12 (follow-up), and were compared to a comparison group that did not participate. A series of 2 × 3 (Group by Time) repeated measures ANOVAs along with follow-up paired comparisons t-tests were conducted to compare the WBW and comparison groups across time. Results indicated that the WBW group exhibited significant increases in two indices of psychological well-being (trait subjective vitality and self-determination) and in their physical activity levels. The comparison group showed no changes in any of the variables. The results of an exploratory regression analysis provided some evidence that WBW participants who experienced the greatest gains in life engagement and trait subjective vitality also exhibited significant increases in level of physical activity. Discussion focuses on the implications of the Well-Being Way approach for the enhancement of positive well-being and future possibilities for eudaimonic-based approaches to health behavior change.


Well-being Eudaimonia Subjective vitality Self-determination Physical activity 


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht and The International Society for Quality-of-Life Studies (ISQOLS) 2013

Authors and Affiliations

  • Patrick Lewis
    • 1
  • Jay Kimiecik
    • 2
    Email author
  • Thelma Horn
    • 3
  • Keith J. Zullig
    • 4
  • Rose Marie Ward
    • 3
  1. 1.Department of Recreation and Leisure StudiesIthaca CollegeIthacaUSA
  2. 2.Department of Kinesiology and HealthMiami UniversityOxfordUSA
  3. 3.Miami UniversityOxfordUSA
  4. 4.Department of Community MedicineWest Virginia UniversityMorgantownUSA

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