Goals on eudaimonia is theory driven as eudaimonic

Goals not only guide how people act and behave, achieving goals, or even moving toward goals, is associated with enhanced well-being (Klug & Maier, 2015). Eudaimonic, also known as psychological well-being (PWB) is one of the perspective of well-being. This perspective emphasise the importance of self-actualization (reaching one’s potential) and the focus is placed on both the experience of pleasure and a long-term striving for mastery and personal growth (Barrett-Cheetham, Williams, & Bednall, 2016). Research on eudaimonia is theory driven as eudaimonic philosophers are concerned with ‘why’ a person is happy. Hence, this perspective provides clues as to the conditions and types of activity are likely to promote more enduring well-being. A model of eudaimonia, often known as SDT, proposed three innate psychological needs to be essential for PWB- autonomy (feeling in control of one’s own choices), relatedness (feeling connected to others and the social environment), and competence (feeling effective and skilled) (Smith, Ntoumanis, & Duda, 2007). These three needs must be satisfied for individuals to experience healthy growth and development. Subsequently, self-determination theorists have determined that striving for intrinsic life goals which are concerned with fulfilling one’s innate psychological needs, such as personal growth is related to greater well-being and life satisfaction, while, prioritizing extrinsic life goals such as financial success is related to poorer well-being and stress (Yamaguchi & Halberstadt, 2012). Research has explained that as extrinsic goals are easily quantified, they become targets for comparison and critical judgment (McLachlan & Hagger, 2011). However, intrinsic goals are not easily quantifiable and thus, defy objective evaluation. Hence, the pursuit of intrinsic goals predicts adaptive psychological and behavioural outcomes relative to the pursuit of extrinsic goals. More importantly, individuals have different ideas of well-being which can be shaped by the combination of natural and social factors that make up a specific culture (Yi, Gore, & Kanagawa, 2014). Hence, it is important to identify which form of goals predicts well-being between cultures. Individualistic cultures emphasise the individual’s rights and freedom, hence individuals tend to pursue intrinsic goals (Ahuvia, 2002). However, in collectivistic cultures, individuals hinge on social recognition and self-definition through others. Hence, they may pursue extrinsic goals. Thus, research has proposed that individuals living in individualistic countries are happier than those in collectivistic countries as they pursue intrinsic goals. However, other researchers have proposed that individuals from collectivistic cultures are able to experience well-being and life satisfaction if those goals reflect basic human needs (Lekes, Gingras, Philippe, Koestner, & Fang, 2010). For example, in poorer countries, individuals who strive for financial success tend to fall less with the extrinsic goals and more with safety and physical health goals. Regardless, this view has received little empirical scrutiny as the majority of goal studies supports the notion that the contents of intrinsic goals, in contrast to the extrinsic ones, would predict psychological well-being (Ingrid, Majda, & Dubravka, 2009). In general, goals that satisfy basic psychological needs will lead to enhanced psychological health and well-being.

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