Mental health or well-being is more than the absence of psychopathology. Mental health has been operationalized as well-being that comprises of emotional, psychological and social well-being. Research has shown that that psychopathology and well-being are related but distinct continua. As a consequence, in order to develop preventive and curative interventions, it is important to not only study the eff ects of treatments on psychopa- thology but on well-being as well, e.g. as part of routine outcome monitoring in health care. In this paper the results are presented of a study on the reliability and validity of three import instruments measuring well-being: the mental health continuum – short form (MHC-SF), the Warwick-Edinburgh Mental Well-Being Scale (WEMWBS) and the Flourishing Scale (FS ). It is concluded that the MHC-SF , FS and WEMWBS are all three reliable and valid instruments for measuring well-being. The MHC-SF has the most comprehensive theo- retical underpinnings and has been studied most elaborately.

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Binnen de psychologie is de belang - stelling voor het positief functioneren en welbevinden van mensen de afgelopen jaren sterk gegroeid. Maar wat zijn goede instrumenten om welbevinden van mensen te meten? In dit artikel presenteren Ernst Bohlmeijer en collega’s drie meetinstrumenten die niet alleen subjectief welbevinden meten maar vooral ook psychologisch welbevinden. De uitkomsten van dit vergelijkend onderzoek kan de psycholoog helpen een goede keuze te maken voor een vragenlijst die welbevinden meet.


Geestelijke gezondheid is meer dan de afwezigheid van psychische stoornissen. In 2005 omschreef de World Health Organization (WHO)27 geestelijke gezondheid als ‘a state of well-being in which the individual realizes his or her own abilities, can cope with the normal stresses of life, can work productively and fruitfully, and is able to make a contribution to his or her community ‘ ( WHO, 2005, p. 2). In de wetenschappelijk literatuur wordt geestelijke gezondheid geoperationaliseerd als welbevinden (Bohlmeijer et al., 2013; Westerhof & Bohlmeijer, 2010)525. Daarbij wordt een onderscheid gemaakt tussen emotioneel, psychologisch en sociaal welbevinden. Emotioneel of subjectief welbevinden verwijst naar de ervaring van positieve en negatieve affecten en de cognitieve evaluatie van het eigen leven. Psychologisch welbevinden verwijst naar het effectief functioneren en zelfverwerkelijking van een individu en omvat elementen als vertrouwen, zelfacceptatie, realisatie van doelen, zingeving, positieve relaties en autonomie. Sociaal welbevinden verwijst naar


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