Journal of Happiness Studies

, Volume 20, Issue 7, pp 2251–2267 | Cite as

The Moderating Role of Trait Affect in the Relationship Between Negative Life Events and Life Satisfaction

  • Milica Lazić
  • Vesna Gavrilov-Jerković
  • Veljko JovanovićEmail author
Research Paper


This study investigated the moderating roles of trait positive affect (PA) and trait negative affect (NA), both separately and conjointly, in the relationship between negative life events and life satisfaction. The final sample consisted of 654 students (83.3% females; mean age = 19.58 years) who completed measures of dispositional PA and NA at Time 1, and measures of negative life events and life satisfaction at Time 2 (after 1 year). The results showed that neither PA nor NA alone moderated the negative life events–life satisfaction relationship. However, it has been found that an increase in the number of negative life events is associated with a substantial decrease in life satisfaction for individuals experiencing generally low levels of both PA and NA. Our findings indicate that high trait PA acts as a protective factor independently of the levels of trait NA, whereas low trait PA represents a vulnerability factor only in a combination with a low trait NA.


Life satisfaction Negative life events Positive affect Negative affect Moderation 



This work was supported by the Ministry of Education, Science and Technological Development of the Republic of Serbia (Grant No. 179006).


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© Springer Nature B.V. 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Psychology, Faculty of PhilosophyUniversity of Novi SadNovi SadSerbia

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