GENDER DIFFERENCES, SELF ESTEEM AND LIFE SATISFACTION
Life satisfaction, recognized as one of the main goals of life for individuals and for social policies of governments, is generally low in Nigeria. The few available studies on life satisfaction have been concentrated on other aspects of life satisfaction without giving attention to the importance of gender and self esteem in improving life satisfaction. This study, therefore, examined the effects of gender and self-esteem on life satisfaction among residents in Ibadan metropolis. Using a 2-way factorial design and a multistage sampling technique, five of the eleven Local Government Areas (LGAs) in the metropolis were purposively selected. Based on the list of enumeration areas for 2005 census, 10 enumeration areas each were selected from the LGAs with simple random technique. The number of houses on the selected enumeration areas was determined with enumeration area maps. Two hundred and twenty households each were selected from the LGAs using systematic technique. A total of 1100 household heads were randomly sampled. A structured questionnaire focusing on socio-demographic profile, self-esteem (r=0.61) and life satisfaction (r=0.74), were administered to the participants. Data were analysed using descriptive statistics and analysis of variance at 0.05 level of significance. Self esteem influenced life satisfaction (F (1,685) = 30.59; p<.05) while, gender did not influence life satisfaction (F (1,685) = .85p>.05).There was a significant interaction effect of self-esteem on gender to predict life satisfaction (F (1,685) = 5.40;p<.05). Gender was not important but self esteem was crucial in improving life satisfaction. Gender differences should be considered for adequate measurement of life satisfaction based on gender descriptions of men and women.
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