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Exploring the Effectiveness of Expressive Writing Interventions on Hopelessness and Social Connectedness

Abstract

Nimisha Ajaikumar

Extensive research has been conducted on the effect of positive psychological interventions on well-being. The present study explores the effectiveness of brief expressive writing interventions in the context of hopelessness and social connectedness. The research design of this study was cross-sectional and experimental with independent groups. Non-purposive convenience sampling was used to recruit 300 participants aged 17-60. Based on the writing activity types used in this study, participants were randomly allocated into three groups of 100 people each. They were then required to write a Gratitude letter, Self-Compassion Letter or a Neutral writing activity on ‘The Weather in Dubai’ for a brief duration of 10 minutes. Following the completion of the writing activity, Beck’s Hopelessness Scale and Social Connectedness Scale-Revised questionnaires were then administered to all participants to measure hopelessness and social connectedness. One-way ANOVA demonstrated that there exists no significant difference between type of expressive writing interventions on hopelessness scores (F(2, 297) = 1.112, p = .330) and social connectedness scores (F(2, 297) = .131, p = .877. The non-significant findings may be attributed to the brevity of the writing time provided to the participants, which may not have provided enough time for reflection. Another explanation could be the well-initiated initiative of the UAE government to promote happiness among its residents. Situational variables and dominance of females and South Asian nationalities in the study may also be considered as limitations of this study. Future researchers are advised to replicate this study in a longitudinal format.

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