Skip navigation
Skip navigation

Attachment security as a basis for gratitude: an empirical investigation

Dinh, Tram Thi Huyen

Description

Gratitude is a positive, higher order affect with significant links to well-being. Research has shown that an attitude of gratitude increases well-being and life-satisfaction and is a protective factor against mental health problems. However, little is known about how trait gratitude is developed or what mechanisms are involved in the link between gratitude and well-being. While there are a number of extant theories of gratitude they tend to be limited in scope, are not well tested, and lack an...[Show more]

dc.contributor.authorDinh, Tram Thi Huyen
dc.date.accessioned2016-05-10T06:08:32Z
dc.date.available2016-05-10T06:08:32Z
dc.identifier.otherb3838873x
dc.identifier.urihttp://hdl.handle.net/1885/101199
dc.description.abstractGratitude is a positive, higher order affect with significant links to well-being. Research has shown that an attitude of gratitude increases well-being and life-satisfaction and is a protective factor against mental health problems. However, little is known about how trait gratitude is developed or what mechanisms are involved in the link between gratitude and well-being. While there are a number of extant theories of gratitude they tend to be limited in scope, are not well tested, and lack an empirical support base. This thesis proposes that attachment theory can address some of the current theoretical limitations in the field and provide a framework for studying gratitude. A critical overview of the gratitude and attachment literature is presented as well as an analysis of how attachment processes may relate to gratitude. A research program with five studies (N = 837) is presented across four empirical chapters. These test the viability of an attachment theory framework for gratitude and examined the hypothesis that attachment security facilitates gratitude arousal and relates to trait gratitude. A cross-sectional study found that individual differences in attachment functioning significantly predicted state and trait gratitude, providing evidence for the validity of attachment as framework for the study of gratitude. Two experimental studies used affective subliminal priming methodology to explore the relationship between normative attachment function and gratitude at the cognitive processing level of experience. Together these studies provide tentative evidence that attachment security and gratitude are found within the same cognitive information network and that individual differences in attachment avoidance and anxiety inhibit information processing of gratitude information. Two more studies examined the link between attachment security and gratitude using supraliminal affective priming at the affective level of experience. The first of these studies provided evidence showing that attachment security leads to more reports of gratitude than positive affect, attachment insecurity, and neutral condition. The second study replicated the results of the first in an independent sample. Implications of the findings for both theory and clinical applications are discussed in detail. Overall, the research presented provides evidence supportive of an attachment theory of gratitude, contributes novel information regarding gratitude in the context of attachment processes, and sets a foundation for future research inquiries regarding a theory of gratitude through the attachment framework.
dc.language.isoen
dc.subjectAttachment
dc.subjectGratitude
dc.titleAttachment security as a basis for gratitude: an empirical investigation
dc.typeThesis (PhD)
local.contributor.supervisorWilkinson, Ross
local.contributor.supervisorcontactross.wilkinson@newcastle.edu.au
dcterms.valid2016
local.type.degreeDoctor of Philosophy (PhD)
dc.date.issued2016
local.contributor.affiliationResearch School of Psychology, The Australian National University
local.identifier.doi10.25911/5d66621c738cd
local.mintdoimint
CollectionsOpen Access Theses

Download

File Description SizeFormat Image
Dinh Thesis 2016.pdf2.3 MBAdobe PDFThumbnail


Items in Open Research are protected by copyright, with all rights reserved, unless otherwise indicated.

Updated:  17 November 2022/ Responsible Officer:  University Librarian/ Page Contact:  Library Systems & Web Coordinator