For a better me? Or for a better us? Perceived utilities of aging preparatory activities and positive future thinking in Germany, USA and Hong Kong
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AbstractEngaging in aging preparatory activities that is perceived to be utile for oneself (e.g., to retain autonomy and independence) and for others (e.g., to retain a harmonious relationship with important others) may have a functional effect on one’s aging process. We examined how perceived self- and other-related utilities of aging preparatory activities were associated with positive future thinking across adulthood, and whether these associations differed by culture. Building upon cross-sectional data from a web-based study conducted in Hong Kong (n = 283, Mage = 55.12, aged 18–85 years), the USA (n = 264, Mage = 51.06, aged 20–85 years) and Germany (n = 402, Mage = 51.65, aged 19–90 years), we observed different patterns of associations across these three cultures. Perceiving self-related utilities was linked to positive future thinking in the USA and Germany, but not in Hong Kong. In contrast, perceiving other-related utilities of aging preparatory activities was positively associated with future thinking in Hong Kong, but not in the USA or Germany. Perceived risks, on the other hand, showed a negative association with positive future thinking across all cultures. Findings suggest that there might be a culture-specific tendency for individuals to appraise their future, based on their perceived self- or other-related utilities of aging preparatory activities.
Acceptance Date20/09/2019
All Author(s) ListKim-Knauss Y, Lang FR, Rohr MK, Fung HH
Journal nameEuropean Journal of Ageing
Year2019
ISSN1613-9372
LanguagesEnglish-United States

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