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Date of Award

2014

Document Type

Thesis: EWU Only

Degree Name

Master of Science (MS) in Psychology: Clinical

Department

Psychology

First Advisor

Dr. Philip Watkins

Second Advisor

Dr. Amani El-Alayli

Third Advisor

Prof. Doris Munson

Abstract

Individuals with enhanced gratitude have higher well-being, a greater capacity to trust, and more appreciation of others. Studies have found that people who show secure attachment also tend to be high in trait gratitude, however, a direct causal relationship has yet to be established. It was hypothesized that secure attachment priming would enhance state gratitude more than other attachment primes. Furthermore, it was predicted that securely attached individuals would have more positive affectivity than insecurely attached individuals, in general. To assess these questions, an experimental design was used to study the relationship between gratitude and attachment. State gratitude was measured by using an instrument to assess gratitude after the priming of attachment occurred. Specifically, participants were primed with one of the following: secure, insecure, or neutral memories through a writing exercise, with the experimental conditions designed to induce a secure or insecure attachment style. Results indicated that secure attachment prime resulted in significantly greater state gratitude than the insecure attachment prime. These findings suggest compelling possibilities for enhanced interpersonal relationship satisfaction.

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 4.0 License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 4.0 License.

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