The relationship between moral foundations and motivation to engage in positive activities

[Speaker] Gherghel, Claudia Emilia:1
[Co-author] Hashimoto, Takeshi:1
1:Shizuoka University (Japan)

Past research suggests that engaging in simple positive activities, such as expressing gratitude or being kind, can promote well-being. The strongest effects on well-being are observed when individuals' self-determined motivation to engage in the activity is high. The present study investigated the relationship between moral foundations and motivation to engage in morally relevant positive activities. In the case of gratitude, we found that higher autonomy foundation endorsement was related to higher self-determined motivation to express gratitude, while higher binding foundation endorsement was indirectly and negatively related to self-determined motivation, the relationship being mediated by the strength of the reciprocity norm. In the case of kindness, both autonomy and binding foundations were positively related to self-determined motivation to perform acts of kindness. Results emphasize the importance of taking into consideration individuals' moral matrix when designing a happiness increasing intervention.
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