ISSN 1671-3710
CN 11-4766/R

Advances in Psychological Science ›› 2017, Vol. 25 ›› Issue (12): 2192-2202.doi: 10.3724/SP.J.1042.2017.02192

• Regular Articles • Previous Articles    

 Purpose in life: A psychological construct that indicates positive development

 LAN Gongrui1; LI Houyi2; GAI Xiaosong3   

  1.  (1 Normal College of Qingdao University, Qingdao 266071, China) (2 Changchun Finance College, Changchun 130028, China)) (3 School of Psychology, Northeast Normal University, Changchun 130024, China)
  • Received:2017-04-19 Online:2017-12-15 Published:2017-10-26
  • Contact: LAN Gongrui, E-mail:
  • Supported by:

Abstract:  Purpose is a stable and generalized intention to accomplish something that is at once meaningful to the self and of consequence to the world beyond the self. It has distinct connotation from meaning and goals. Purpose in life represents a higher-level psychological construct that offers insight into how and why certain people are healthy, successful and happy in the long-term. Having a purpose in life results in benefits in several aspects: it can promote individuals’ well-being, fend off negative experiences and behaviors, promote individual’ positive development, and facilitate higher level of achievement. Purpose in life originates from the opportunity to engage in potentially purposeful activities. Social support and culture could influence the development process of purpose in life. We concluded with an agenda for future research on the measurement, law of development, function, nomological network, ways of training, cultural and cross-cultural investigation of purpose in life.

Key words: purpose in life, meaning, goals, adolescence, positive development, beyond-the-self

CLC Number: