This study examined the buffering influence of spirituality and optimism on sense of coherence among imminent retirees in Lagos State, Nigeria. The study adopted a descriptive survey utilizing an expost-facto research design. Six hundred and five imminent retirees constituted the participants for the study. Through the use of probabilistic simple random sampling technique, the participants were selected from various federal governments’ parastatals and core ministries. All the participants were selected in Lagos state. They comprise three hundred and sixty five (365) males and two hundred and forty (240) females.  Their age raged between 48 and 65 with an average age of 59.6 years. Hierarchical multiple regression statistic was employed to examine the relationships between the criterion variable and the independent variables. Results revealed that each of the independent variables made significant relative and joint contribution to the prediction of sense of coherence. Also, there were significant correlations between spirituality,  dispositional optimism and sense of coherence among the imminent retirees. It is recommended that there is strong need for counselling, clinical and personnel psychologists to take into account the psychological variables used in this study while addressing workers' anxiety relating to their prospective retirement.




Spirituality, optimism, sense of coherence, imminent retirees

Full Text:



Antonovsky, A. (1987). Unraveling the mystery of health: How people manage stress and stay well. San Francisco: Jossey-Bass.

Antonovsky, A. (1993). The structure and properties of the Sense of Coherence scale. Social Science and Medicine, 36 (6), 725-733.

Arbuckle T. Y., Conney R., Milne J. & Melchior A.(1994) Memory for spatial layouts in relation to age and schema typicality. Psychology and Aging. 9, 467-480.

Aspinwall, L. G., & Taylor, S. E. (1997). A stitch in time: Self-regulation and proactive coping. Psychological Bulletin, 121(3), 417 - 436.

Blau, David M. 1994. “Labor Force Dynamics of Older Men”. Econometrica 62(1): 117-156.

Bound, J., Schoenbaum, M., & Waidmann, T. (1995). Race and education differences in disability status and labor force attachment in the health and retirement survey. Journal of Human Resources, 30, Special issue on the Health and Retirement Study: Data quality and early results. S227-S267.

Brissette, I., Scheier, M. F., & Carver, C. S. (2002). The role of optimism in social network development, coping, and psychological adjustment during a life transition. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 82, 102-11. Retrieved September 19, 2002, from the PsycARTICLES database.

Carstens, J. & Spangenberg, J. (1997). Major depression: A breakdown in sense of coherence? Psychological Reports, 80, 1211-1220.

Cohen, H., Matar, M. A., Kaplan, Z., & Kotler, M. (1999). Power spectral analysis of heart rate variability in psychiatry. Psychotherapy & Psychosomatic, 68, 59-66.

Ellison, C.W. 1983. Spiritual well-being: conceptualization and measurement. Journal of Psychology and Theology, 11, 330-340.

Falkenstein, M., Hohnsbein, J., Hoorman, J. (2000) ERP components on reaction errors and their functional significance: a tutorial. Biological Psychology. 51, 87-107.

File, S. E. (1993) The interplay of learning and anxiety in the elevated plus-maze. Behavioural Brain Research. 58,199-202.

Flannery, R. B., & Flannery, G. J. (1990). Sense of coherence, life stress and psychological distress: A prospective methodological inquiry. Journal of Clinical Psychology, 46(4), 415-420.

Flannery, R.B., Perry, J.C., Penk, W.E. & Flannery, G.J. (1994). Validating Antonovsky’s Sense of Coherence Scale. Journal of Clinical Psychology, 50(4), 575-577.

Green, C. A. (2006). The unexpected impact of health on the labor supply of the oldest Americans. Journal of Labor Research, 27(3), 361-379.

Gustman, Alan L. and Thomas L. Steinmeier. 1984. “Modeling the Retirement Process for Evaluation and Research”. Monthly Labor Review (107)7: 26-33.

Gustman, A. L., Mitchell, O. S., & Steinmeier, T. L. (1995). Retirement measures in the Health and Retirement Study. Journal of Human Resources, 30, Special issue on the Health and Retirement Study: Data quality and early results, S57-S83.

Hamermesh, D. S. (1984). Life-cycle effects on consumption and retirement. Journal of Labor Economics, 2 (3), 353-370.

Hardy, M. A. (1984). Effects of education on retirement among white male wage and-salary workers. Sociology of Education, 57 (2), 84-98.

Honig, M., & Hanoch, G. (1985). Partial retirement as a separate mode of retirement behaviour. The Journal of Human Resources, 20 (1), 21-46.

Kalimo, R. & Vuori, J. (1990). Work and sense of coherence: Resources for competence and life satisfaction. Behavioural Medicine, 16(2), 76-89.

Keller, K.E, Biggs, D.A. & Gysbers, N.C. (1982). Career counselling from a cognitive perspective. The personnel and guidance journal, 60, 367-371.

Koenig H.G. 1997. Is Religion Good for Your Health? Binghamton, NY: Haworth.

Korkushko O.V., Chebotarev D.F., Kalinovskaya E.G. (1993) Geriatrics in therapeutically practical. Zdorovia, Kiev, p 840.

Korotkov, D. (1998). Sense of coherence: making sense out of chaos. In T.P. Wong & P.S. Fry (Eds.), The human quest for meaning (pp. 51-70). Mahwah: Lawrence Erlbaum Associates.

McSherry, W.C. & Holm, J.E. (1994). Sense of coherence: Its effect on psychological and physiological processes prior to during and after a stressful situation. Journal of Clinical Psychology, 50, 476-487.

Leonova A.B. (1984) Psychodiagnostic of human functional states. Moskovski Universitet, Moscow, p 200.

Loprest, P., Rupp, K., & Sandell. S. H. (1995). Gender, disabilities, and employment in the Health and Retirement Study. Journal of Human Resources, 30, Special issue on the Health and Retirement Study: Data quality and early results. S268-S292.

Lukoff, D. LU, F. G. and Turner, R. (1995). ” Cultural Consideration in Assessment and Treatment of Religious and Spiritual Problems”. The Psychiatric Clinic of North American, 18(3) 467-485.

Lustig, D., Rosenthal, D., Strauser, D. & Haynes, K. (2000). The relationship of sense of coherence to life satisfaction for students with disabilities. Rehabilitation Counselling Bulletin, 43, 134-141.

Montalto, C. P., Yuh, Y., & Hanna, S. (2000). Determinants of planned retirement age. Financial Services Review, 9, 1-15.

Mullan J.T. (1981) The stress process. J. Social Behaviour. 22.: 337-356.

Peterson, C. (2000). The future of optimism. American Psychologist, 55(1), 44-55.

Price, C. (2002). Retirement for women: The impact of employment, Journal of Women & Aging, 14 (3/4), 41-57.

Quinn, J. F. (1977). Microeconomic determinants of early retirement: A cross-sectional view of white married men. Journal of Human Resources, 12 (3), 329-346.

Raikkoenen, K., Matthews, K. A., Flory, J. D., Owens, J. F., & Gump, B. B. (1999). Effects of optimism, pessimism, and trait anxiety on ambulatory blood pressure and mood during everyday life. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 76(1), 104-113.

Robinson-Whelen, S., Kim, C., MacCallum, R. C., & Kiecolt-Glaser, J. K. (1997). Distinguishing optimism from pessimism in older adults: is it more important to be optimistic or not to be pessimistic? Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 73(6), 1345-1353.

Ruhm, C. J. (1990). Bridge jobs and partial retirement. Journal of Labor Economics, 8 (4), 482-501.

Salovey, P., & Birnbaum, D. (1989). Influence of mood on health-related cognitions. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 57, 539–551.

Salovey, P., Rothman, A. J., Detweiler, J. B., & Steward, W. T. (1999). Emotional states and physical health. American Psychologist, 55, 110-121.

Scheier, M. F. & Carver, C. S. (1987). Dispositional optimism and physical well-being: the influence of generalized outcome expectancies on health. Journal of Personality, 55(2), 169-210.

Scheier, M. F. & Carver, C. S. (1992). Effects of optimism on psychological and physical well-being: theoretical overview and empirical update. Cognitive Therapy and Research, 16, 201-228.

Scheier, M. F., Carver, C. S., & Bridges, M. W. (1994). Distinguishing optimism from neuroticism (and trait anxiety, self-mastery, and self-esteem): A reevaluation of the Life Orientation Test. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 67(6), 1063-1078.

Scheier, M. F., Weintraub, J. K., & Carver, C. S. (1986). Coping with stress: Divergent strategies of optimists and pessimists. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 51, 1257-1264.

Segerstrom, S. C., Taylor, S. E., Kemeny, M. E., & Fahey, J. L. (1998). Optimism is associated with mood, coping, and immune changes in response to stress. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 74, 1646-1655.

Simmons, B. A., & Betschild, M. J. (2001). Women’s retirement, work and life paths: changes, disruptions and discontinuities. Journal of Women & Aging, 13 (4), 53-70.

Soderberg, S., Lundman, B. & Norberg, A. (1997). Living with fibromyalgia: Sense of coherence, perception of well being and stress in daily life. Research in Nursing and Health, 20, 495-503.

Taylor, S. E., & Brown, J. D. (1994). Positive illusions and well-being revisited: Separating fact from fiction. Psychological Bulletin, 116, 21–27.

Vercrussen M. (1991) Age-related slowing of behaviour. Proceeding of the Human Factors Society-35th Annual Meeting, Santa Monica.: 188-192.

Wirth, D. P. (1993). Implementing spiritual healing in modern medical practice. Advances, 9(4), 69-81.

Zumeta, Z. D. (1993). Spirituality and mediation. Special Issue: Beyond technique: The soul of family mediation. Mediation Quarterly, 11(1), 25-38.


  • There are currently no refbacks.

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 License.