Being grateful to one's partner matters for a diverse range of interpersonal and individual well-being outcomes. However, there is little investigation on the psychological benefits of expressing gratitude to partners during the coronavirus 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic. Using a short-term longitudinal design, this study of undergraduate students (Mage = 20.31; SDage = 1.81; n = 268) in the United States explores the link between expressing gratitude in romantic relationships, subsequent relationship self-efficacy, life satisfaction, psychological well-being, and the COVID-19 anxiety. Results demonstrated that expressing gratitude in relationships positively predicted subsequent relationship self-efficacy and life satisfaction even after controlling for age, gender, ethnic background, trait gratitude, and auto-regressor effects. These findings show that relational gratitude had incremental validity in predicting relational self-efficacy and subjective well-being above and beyond the effects of demographic factors and dispositional gratitude. This research emphasizes the psychological payoffs of cultivating gratitude in relational contexts. Copyright © 2023 International Association of Applied Psychology.
CitationBuenconsejo, J. U., Fincham, F. D., & Datu, J. A. D. (2023). The perks of being grateful to partners: Expressing gratitude in relationships predicts relational self-efficacy and life satisfaction during the COVID-19 pandemic. Applied Psychology: Health and Well‐Being. Advance online publication. https://doi.org/10.1111/aphw.12447
- Expressing gratitude in relationships
- Life satisfaction
- Relationship self-efficacy