Research data for paper: Meaning Is About Mattering: Evaluating Coherence, Purpose, and Existential Mattering as Precursors of Meaning in Life Judgments

2019-01-23T14:45:08Z (GMT) by Vlad Costin Vivian Vignoles
These are the associated questionnaires and datasets for the manuscript with the same name, accepted for publication in the Journal of Personality and Social Psychology (published on 07/01/2019).

Please note that where questionnaire items are named "worth," these are the self-liking items described in the associated paper, and the "sig" items are the mattering items from the paper.

A copy of SPSS statistics is required to view the .sav files

Study 1 Questionnaire: This is the complete set of items displayed to participants as part of Study 1.

Study 1 Dataset: This is the raw set of responses (i.e., no responses were excluded) to the Study 1 questionnaire items

Study 2 T1 Questionnaire, Study 2 T2 Questionnaire, & Study 2 T3 Questionnaire: These are the complete sets of items displayed to participants as part of Study 2, at Time 1 (first measurement point), Time 2 (second measurement point, one month after Time 1), and Time 3 (third measurement point, two months after Time 1), respectively. Study 2 T2 Questionnaire contains the same items as Study 2 T3 Questionnaire, whereas Study 1 T1 Questionnaire also includes some additional items regarding participants' beliefs (e.g., free will, meritocracy)

Study 2 T1 Dataset, Study 2 T2 Dataset, & Study 2 T3 Dataset: This is the raw set of responses (i.e., no responses were excluded) to the Study 2 questionnaire items collected at Time 1, Time 2, and Time 3, respectively. The responses at the three time points can be merged using the id variables (e.g., id_1, id_2; more details about how we did this can be found in the associated paper).

Study 3 T1 Questionnaire & Study 3 T2 Questionnaire: These are the complete sets of items displayed to participants as part of Study 3, at Time 1 (first measurement point), Time 2 (second measurement point, one month after Time 1), respectively. Study 3 T1 Questionnaire contains the same items as Study 3 T2 Questionnaire, but T1 also includes questions about demographics (e.g., age, gender, political orientation).

Study 3 T1 Dataset & Study 3 T2 Dataset: This is the raw set of responses (i.e., no responses were excluded) to the Study 3 questionnaire items collected at Time 1 and Time 2, respectively. The responses at the three time points can be merged using the id variables (id_1_TEXT, id_2_TEXT; more details about how we did this can be found in the associated paper).

Abstract of paper
When people judge their lives as meaningful, what is this judgment about? Drawing on recent tripartite theoretical accounts of meaning in life (MIL), we tested the separate contributions of coherence (or comprehension), purpose, and existential mattering (or significance) as potential precursors of people’s self-reported evaluations of MIL. In Study 1 (N = 314 social media users), we developed brief acquiescence-free measures of these constructs, confirming that sense of coherence, purpose, mattering and MIL judgments were distinct from each other and from related constructs (sense of control, belonging, self-esteem, self-competence, mood). In Studies 2 (N = 168 students) and 3 (N = 442 Prolific Academic respondents; pre-registered), we collected longitudinal data to test temporal relationships between coherence, purpose, mattering, and MIL judgments over a one-month time lag. In both studies, sense of mattering consistently emerged as a significant precursor of MIL judgments, whereas sense of purpose and coherence did not. We conclude that researchers and practitioners should pay more attention to the relatively neglected dimension of existential mattering, beyond their more common emphases on coherence or purpose as bases of meaningfulness.