Do good things come in pairs? How personality traits help explain individuals' simultaneous pursuit of a healthy lifestyle and financially responsible behavior

Arvid O.I. Hoffmann, Leonora Risse

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

19 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Both a healthy lifestyle and financially responsible behavior contribute to individual wellbeing and benefit society. Motivated by the fact that both types of behavior involve short-term sacrifices in exchange for uncertain long-term benefits and require self-control, we examine individuals' consistency in behavior across the health and financial domains. Using a large-scale data set of 3,752 employed Australians, we find that the majority of individuals behave in a consistently beneficial or detrimental way across both domains. This behavioral consistency relates to fundamental life outcomes, including physical and mental health, financial prosperity, and life satisfaction. In a new contribution to the literature, we show how personality traits—Locus of Control, the Big Five, Achievement Motivation—have a meaningful role in explaining the simultaneous pursuit of a healthy lifestyle and financially responsible behavior. These behavioral insights can guide policymakers in developing more effective strategies to steer individuals towards beneficial health and financial outcomes.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1082-1120
Number of pages39
JournalJournal of Consumer Affairs
Volume54
Issue number3
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 1 Sept 2020
Externally publishedYes

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