For this study, a team of researchers wanted to look for any correlations between stress, forgiveness, and authenticity. Authenticity, of course, relates to how much you’re able to be yourself, which is associated with mental wellbeing–as is having a strong capacity to forgive. But what happens when stress is at play?
To find out, the team looked at a few different cohorts (comprised of 140 young men and women aged 16 to 40) who were experiencing varying levels and types of stress. One cohort was experiencing low stress, another dealt with everyday stress, and the third with chronic stress.
In this study, the participants with chronic stress were people who had suffered spinal injuries. But in general, chronic stress can be defined as constant, ongoing stress experienced over a long period of time, often tied to trauma. On the other hand, everyday stress is the type of day-to-day stress experienced due to routine responsibilities and happenings.
Using self-reported questionnaires, the participants then recorded things like how forgiving they are, and how authentic they feel.