How Much Is Enough in a Perfect World? Cultural Variation in Ideal Levels of Happiness, Pleasure, Freedom, Health, Self-Esteem, Longevity, and Intelligence

  title={How Much Is Enough in a Perfect World? Cultural Variation in Ideal Levels of Happiness, Pleasure, Freedom, Health, Self-Esteem, Longevity, and Intelligence},
  author={Matthew J. Hornsey and Paul G. Bain and Emily A. Harris and Nadezhda Lebedeva and Emiko S. Kashima and Yanjun Guan and Roberto Gonz{\'a}lez and Sylvia Xiaohua Chen and Sheyla Blumen},
  journal={Psychological Science},
  pages={1393 - 1404}
The maximization principle—that people aspire to the highest possible level of something good if all practical constraints are removed—is a common yet untested assumption about human nature. We predict that in holistic cultures—where contradiction, change, and context are emphasized—ideal states of being for the self will be more moderate than in other cultures. In two studies (Ns = 2,392 and 6,239), we asked this question: If participants could choose their ideal level of happiness, pleasure… 

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