Qualitative Analysis of the Socially Active Older Peoples‘ Psychosocial Factors of Life Satisfaction

Antanas Mockus, Jolanta Sondaitė, Joana Butėnaitė

Abstract


Older people make a significant part of the population of Lithuania and the number still continues to grow. 711,072 people in Lithuania are 60 years old or older. This number represents 23.6% of the Lithuanian population. In comparison, in 2001, 19.3% of the Lithuanian population were older people, and in 2006, it reached 20.4%. So, it is important to pay due attention to solving problems related to their well-being.
A review of research that explores the relationship between the social activity and life satisfaction as well as qualitative research on this topic has not been conducted yet. Qualitative research has its advantages in comparison with quantitative analysis because it can bring new ideas. Therefore, in order to take a new and different look into the above-mentioned area of research, a qualitative study, which is expected to reveal new ideas for further research and practical work with the elderly, is needed. The object of the research - socially active older people’s satisfaction with life. The aim - to reveal the socially active older people’s life satisfaction psychosocial factors. The study involved eight study participants. The age of the participants ranged from 60-79. Thematic analysis method was used to analyse data collected through focus group. Thematic analysis of the data led to 5 themes were identified: interpersonal relationships, employment, positive attitude towards life, satisfaction with fruits of my labour and openness to experience. Based on the results of the study, interpersonal relations and employment were attributed to social factors of life satisfaction of socially active older people, and satisfaction with fruits of labour, positive attitude towards life, openness to experience were attributed to psychological factors. It is recommended to pay attention to the intimate, informal interpersonal contacts organizing activities with the elderly. Attention should be paid not only to activities together with others, but also for solitary activities. It is also recommended to pay attention to older people’s positive thinking skills.

Keywords


successful aging; activity theory; life satisfaction; focus group

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DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.13165/SD-13-12-2-12

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"Social Work" ISSN online 2029-2775 / ISSN print 1648-4789