Emotional Experiences and Psychological Well-Being in 51 Countries During the COVID-19 Pandemic

Rui Sun, Alisa Balabanova, Claude Julien Bajada, Yang Liu, Mariia Kriuchok, Silja Riin Voolma, Mirna Đurić, Claude Hélène Mayer, Maria Constantinou, Mariam Chichua, Chengcheng Li, Ashley Foster-Estwick, Kurt Borg, Carin Hill, Rishabh Kaushal, Ketaki Diwan, Valeria Vitale, Tiarah Engels, Rabiah Aminudin, Irina UrsuTengku Nila Fadhlia, Yi Jung Wu, Lusanda Sekaja, Milad Hadchity, Anita Deak, Shahira Sharaf, Pau Figueras, Anthony Kaziboni, Aoife Whiston, Kalliopi Ioumpa, Alfredo Montelongo, Lisanne Pauw, Gabriela Pavarini, Evgeniya Vedernikova, Tuong Van Vu, Lauri Nummenmaa, Yong Qi Cong, Milica Nikolic, Andrea Olguin, Wai Kai Hou, Jacob Israelashvili, Hyunjin J. Koo, Samaneh Khademi, Chinwendu G. Ukachukwu, Damian Omari Juma, Roza G. Kamiloğlu, Akerke Makhmud, Peter Sigurdson Lunga, Carlotta Rieble, Muhammad Rizwan, Mai Helmy, Laura Vuillier, Kunalan Manokara, Enzo Cáceres Quezada, Delgermend Tserendamba, Michiko Yoshie, Amy H. Du, Kumba Philip-Joe, Pála Björk Kúld, Kalifa Damani, Annabella Osei-Tutu, Disa Sauter

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Scopus citations

Abstract

The COVID-19 pandemic presents challenges to psychological well-being, but how can we predict when people suffer or cope during sustained stress? Here, we test the prediction that specific types of momentary emotional experiences are differently linked to psychological well-being during the pandemic. Study 1 used survey data collected from 24,221 participants in 51 countries during the COVID-19 outbreak. We show that, across countries, wellbeing is linked to individuals’ recent emotional experiences, including calm, hope, anxiety, loneliness, and sadness. Consistent results are found in two age, sex, and ethnicity-representative samples in the United Kingdom (n = 971) and the United States (n = 961) with preregistered analyses (Study 2). A prospective 30-day daily diary study conducted in the United Kingdom (n = 110) confirms the key role of these five emotions and demonstrates that emotional experiences precede changes in well-being (Study 3). Our findings highlight differential relationships between specific types of momentary emotional experiences and well-being and point to the cultivation of calm and hope as candidate routes for well-being interventions during periods of sustained stress.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)397-411
Number of pages15
JournalEmotion
Volume24
Issue number2
DOIs
StatePublished - Mar 2024

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2023 American Psychological Association

Keywords

  • COVID-19 pandemic
  • emotion
  • stress
  • well-being

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