Self-determination theory posits that satisfaction of three basic psychological needs-autonomy, competence, and relatedness-are required for psychological well-being, and a recent study showed that the balance in the satisfaction of these three needs independently affects well-being. The present investigation builds on these findings by examining the balance of adolescents' need satisfaction across distinct life contexts. The results of three studies show that adolescents who experience a balance of need satisfaction across important life contexts, including at school, at home, with friends, and in part-time jobs, reported higher well-being and better school adjustment. This finding emerged consistently across four countries and across multiple measures of school adjustment, including teacher reports. Together, these results support previous research that highlights the importance of consistency for psychological functioning.

Additional Metadata
Keywords Adjustment, Adolescents, Psychological need satisfaction, Self-determination theory
Persistent URL
Journal Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin
Milyavskaya, M, Gingras, I. (Isabelle), Mageau, G.A. (Geneviève A.), Koestner, R. (Richard), Gagnon, H. (Hugo), Fang, J. (Jianqun), & Boiché, J. (Julie). (2009). Balance across contexts: Importance of balanced need satisfaction across various life domains. Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin, 35(8), 1031–1045. doi:10.1177/0146167209337036