Examining Associations Between Major Negative Life Events, Changes in Weekly Reports of Post-Traumatic Growth and Global Reports of Eudaimonic Well-Being
Research on post-traumatic growth (PTG) has been compromised by methodological limitations. Recent process-oriented accounts of personality suggest, however, that positive changes may occur through short-term (i.e., state-level) changes in PTG. In the current year-long study, 1,247 participants provided weekly reports of significant negative events as well as state manifestations of PTG (up to 44 assessments per individual; 34,205 total). Trait assessments of eudaimonic well-being (EWB) were administered at intake and Weeks 45 and 52. Experiencing negative life events predicted increases in state PTG, which in turn predicted increases in EWB. However, stability was observed when modeling prospective changes in overall state PTG before and after the initial negative life event or across all negative life events occurring during the study time frame. These findings highlight the importance of studying PTG-related processes using appropriate research designs, analytic strategies, and time frames.