Daily positive support and perceived stress during COVID-19 outbreak: The role of daily gratitude within couples

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Abstract

Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) has induced stress and anxiety. According to past studies, positive support within married couples reduces stress during diseases and disasters, but their mechanisms are unclear. To address this gap and help individuals better cope with COVID-19-related psychological distress, this study examined the relationships among daily positive support, daily gratitude, and daily stress within married couples. In this 14-day daily diary study, 54 heterosexually married couples (N = 108) aged 28 to 71 years participated. After reporting their demographic information at the start of the study, they reported their perceived positive support from their partner, daily stress, and feelings of gratitude at the end of each day of the study for 14 consecutive days. Using a multivariate outcome, multilevel cross-classification, we found that daily positive support was negatively associated with daily stress, mediated by daily feelings of gratitude. On a day when a person reported more perceived positive support than others, this person also reported a higher level of feelings of gratitude and a lower level of stress, regardless of age. We found only an actor effect, no partner effect. These findings show how greater daily positive support is linked to greater daily feelings of gratitude, which in turn is linked to less daily stress during an emergent public health crisis. Copyright © 2021 Springer Nature B.V.
Original languageEnglish
JournalJournal of Happiness Studies
Early online date18 Apr 2021
DOIs
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 18 Apr 2021

Citation

Jiang, D., Chiu, M. M., & Liu, S. (2021). Daily positive support and perceived stress during COVID-19 outbreak: The role of daily gratitude within couples. Journal of Happiness Studies. Advance online publication. doi: 10.1007/s10902-021-00387-0

Keywords

  • Positive support
  • Marital relationship
  • Gratitude
  • Life span
  • COVID-19

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