International Journal of Behavioral Medicine

, Volume 20, Issue 4, pp 567–571 | Cite as

Optimism and Self-Esteem Are Related to Sleep. Results from a Large Community-Based Sample

  • Sakari Lemola
  • Katri Räikkönen
  • Veronica Gomez
  • Mathias Allemand
Article

Abstract

Background

There is evidence that positive personality characteristics, such as optimism and self-esteem, are important for health. Less is known about possible determinants of positive personality characteristics.

Purpose

To test the relationship of optimism and self-esteem with insomnia symptoms and sleep duration.

Method

Sleep parameters, optimism, and self-esteem were assessed by self-report in a community-based sample of 1,805 adults aged between 30 and 84 years in the USA. Moderation of the relation between sleep and positive characteristics by gender and age as well as potential confounding of the association by depressive disorder was tested.

Results

Individuals with insomnia symptoms scored lower on optimism and self-esteem largely independent of age and sex, controlling for symptoms of depression and sleep duration. Short sleep duration (<6 h) was related to lower optimism and self-esteem when compared to individuals sleeping 7–8 h, controlling depressive symptoms. Long sleep duration (>9 h) was also related to low optimism and self-esteem independent of age and sex.

Conclusion

Good and sufficient sleep is associated with positive personality characteristics. This relationship is independent of the association between poor sleep and depression.

Keywords

Insomnia symptoms Sleep duration Optimism Self-esteem Major depression 

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Copyright information

© International Society of Behavioral Medicine 2012

Authors and Affiliations

  • Sakari Lemola
    • 1
  • Katri Räikkönen
    • 2
  • Veronica Gomez
    • 1
  • Mathias Allemand
    • 3
  1. 1.Department of PsychologyUniversity of BaselBaselSwitzerland
  2. 2.Faculty of Behavioural SciencesUniversity of HelsinkiHelsinkiFinland
  3. 3.Department of PsychologyUniversity of ZürichZürichSwitzerland

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