Authenticity, meaning in life, and life satisfaction: A multicomponent investigation of relationships at the trait and state levels. Academic Article uri icon


  • OBJECTIVE: The present study sought to examine: (1) how the components of authenticity (i.e., authentic living, self-alienation, accepting external influence) relate to one another at between- and within-person levels of analysis; (2) how the authenticity facets relate to meaning in life (i.e., purpose, comprehension, mattering) and life satisfaction at these levels of analysis; and (3) whether these relationships persist when controlling for affect and self-esteem. METHOD: Canadian undergraduates (N=203) completed a trait questionnaire and end-of-day reports on these constructs for two weeks (n=2335). RESULTS: At between- and within-person levels, authentic living was negatively associated with self-alienation and accepting external influence, while the latter two facets were positively associated. Authentic living was positively related to well-being and predicted greater well-being the following day. Alternatively, self-alienation and accepting external influence were negatively related to well-being, and self-alienation predicted lower well-being the following day. Relationships involving authentic living and self-alienation were more robust than those involving accepting external influence. CONCLUSION: Extending research on authenticity beyond between-person relationships, our findings show that daily states of authenticity predict well-being in nuanced ways, depending on the facet of authenticity. This highlights the importance of distinguishing levels of analyses and facets of authenticity.

published proceedings

  • J Pers

altmetric score

  • 8.33

author list (cited authors)

  • Lutz, P. K., Newman, D. B., Schlegel, R. J., & Wirtz, D.

citation count

  • 3

complete list of authors

  • Lutz, Paul K||Newman, David B||Schlegel, Rebecca J||Wirtz, Derrick

publication date

  • June 2023