Findings on happiness in Hershfield et al. (2013): study US San Francisco, California 1994

Author(s)Hershfield, H.E.; Scheibe, S.; Sims, T.
TitleWhen Feeling Bad Can Be Good: Mixed Emotions Benefit Physical Health Across Adulthood.
SourceSocial Psychology and Personal Science, 2013, Vol. 4, 54 - 61
DOIDOI: 10.1177/1948550612444616
Public18+ aged, general public, San Francisco, California, United States, followed 10 years, 1994-2005
 Gender: 54% female Age: 18-94 M=55 S.D.=20.4 Ethnicity: 31% African American, 69% European American Job status: 41% blue collar workers, 59% white collar workers. Demographics evenly distributed across age.
Collect period5 year intervals
Last assesment2005
 3 waves of data collection: Wave 1: 1994-1995 Wave 2: 1998-2000 Wave 3: 2004-2005
Survey nameUnnamed study
SampleProbability area sample
 Recruitment by research firm in San Francisco Bay Area.
Respondents N =312
 Wave 1: n=184 Wave 2: n=193 Wave 3: n=178 At wave 2 and 3 additional participants were recruited to replace those lost to attrition. Participants who were retained from one wave to the next were more likely to be European American and have more years of education. 54 respondents participated in all 3 waves, 87 participated in 2 waves and 171 in one wave.
Non ResponseNot available
AssesmentInterview: face-to-face
 After demographic assesments respondents completes a questionnaire on physical health, happiness and cognitive ability. On an electronic pager participants completed the emotion response questionnaires each time they were paged, 5 times a day at random times. After completion of the week-long data collection they returned to the lab for a follow-up interview, after which they were debriefed and paid for their participation.
Happiness measure(s) used
Full textSelfreport on 19 questions repeated 5 times a day Degree to which one feel emotion at the moment (Full text of lead phrase not reported) A happiness B joy C contentment D excitement E pride F accomplishment G interest H amusement I anger J sadness K fear L disgust M guilt N embarrassment O shame P anxiety Q irritation R frustration S boredom Rated 1 not at all 2 3 4 5 6 7 extremely Computation: (A+B+C+D+E+F+G+H)/8 -(I+J+K+L+M+N+O+P+Q+R+S)/11
Author's labelHappiness
Page in publication56,57
RemarksPA: M = 3, 60 SD = 1,03 NA: M = 1,64 SD = 0,55 ABS computed by WDH team
Error estimatesChange by wave: 0.05 (p<.05)
Finding used in
nation ranks
 On original range -6 - 6On range 0 - 10
Standard deviation

Correlational findings

Author's label Our subject description
Negative health symptomsshow  Current general health status
Negative health symptomsshow  Expert rating of health, also classified as above ↑