The authors report on data indicating that having a strong sense of meaning in life makes people more appealing social interactants. In Study 1, participants were videotaped while conversing with a friend, and the interactions were subsequently rated by independent evaluators. Participants who had reported a strong sense of meaning in life were rated as desirable friends. In Study 2, participants made 10-s videotaped introductions of themselves that were subsequently evaluated by independent raters. Those who reported a strong sense of meaning in life were rated as more likeable, better potential friends, and more desirable conversation partners. The effect of meaning in life was beyond that of several other variables, including self-esteem, happiness, extraversion, and agreeableness. Study 2 also found an interaction between physical attractiveness and meaning in life, with more meaning in life contributing to greater interpersonal appeal for those of low and average physical attractiveness.
Source: “Meaning as Magnetic Force, Evidence That Meaning in Life Promotes Interpersonal Appeal” from Social Psychological and Personality Science
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