Background. The relationship between technology use and subjective well-being is controversial, with recent research suggesting both positive and negative links. Thus, it is important to determine whether using technology actually leads to flourishing and well-being. To do so, the construct of TechnoWellness, which includes both adaptive and maladaptive modes of using technology, could be particularly useful. Moreover, the mechanisms that account for these relationships have been insufficiently explored.
Objective: With this study, we had two objectives. First, we aimed to test the relationships between TechnoWellness and the three components of subjective well-being (positive affect, negative affect, and satisfaction with life). Secondly, we aimed to investigate whether optimism mediates those relationships.
Design: A total of 366 participants (122 men and 244 women, mean age = 22.34 years old) took part in this study. In this cross-sectional investigation, we measured TechnoWellness, optimism, positive and negative affect, satisfaction with life, and some demographic variables, using an online form. To verify our aims we used structural equation modeling (SEM) with mediation.
Results: Among the positive factors of TechnoWellness, only using technology for physical activity was directly associated with satisfaction with life. Among the negative factors, the stress caused by technology use was directly associated with negative affect. Optimism mediated the relationships between these two factors (using technology for physical activity and stress caused by technology use) and all the components of subjective well-being.
Conclusion: Using technology to foster wellness is related to actual subjective well-being. However, the purpose, frequency, and type of its use are important elements to be considered when studying its effects.
Keywords: Technology/ positive psychology/ satisfaction with life/ positive affect/ negative affect