Nostalgia Fosters Self-Continuity: Uncovering the Mechanism (Social Connectedness) and Consequence (Eudaimonic Well-Being)
© 2016 American Psychological Association. Nostalgia, a sentimental longing for one's past, is an emotion that arises from self-relevant and social memories. Nostalgia functions, in part, to foster self-continuity, that is, a sense of connection between one's past and one's present. This article examined, in 6 experiments, how nostalgia fosters selfcontinuity and the implications of that process for well-being. Nostalgia fosters self-continuity by augmenting social connectedness, that is, a sense of belongingness and acceptance (Experiments 1-4). Nostalgia-induced self-continuity, in turn, confers eudaimonic well-being, operationalized as subjective vitality (i.e., a feeling of aliveness and energy; Experiments 5-6). The findings clarify and expand the benefits of nostalgia for both the self-system and psychological adjustment.
Sedikides, Constantine; Wildschut, Tim; Cheung, Wing Yee; Hepper, Erica G.; Vail, Kenneth; Brackstone, Kenny; Routledge, Clay; Arndt, Jamie; Zhou, Xinyue; and Vingerhoets, Ad J.J.M., "Nostalgia Fosters Self-Continuity: Uncovering the Mechanism (Social Connectedness) and Consequence (Eudaimonic Well-Being)" (2016). Psychology Faculty Publications. 59.