Fear of Happiness Scale

Primary use / Purpose:

To measure fear of happiness or aversion to happiness (the belief that happiness may cause bad things to happen).

Psychometrics:

The scale has 5 items. It has demonstrated acceptable validity, reliability, and measurement invariance in 15 cultures (see the key references).

Author of Tool:

Mohsen Joshanloo

Key references:

Joshanloo, M., Lepshokova, Z. Kh., Panyusheva, T., Natalia, A. Poon, W.C., Yeung, V.W., Sundaram, S., Achoui, M., Asano, R., Igarashi, T., Tsukamoto, S., Rizwan, M., Khilji, I., A., Ferreira, M. C., Pang, J.S., Ho, L.S., Han, G., Bae, J., & Jiang, D. (2014). Cross-cultural validation of the fear of happiness scale across 14 national groups. Journal of cross-cultural psychology, 45(2), 246-264. doi: 10.1177/0022022113505357

Joshanloo, M. (2013). The influence of fear of happiness beliefs on responses to the satisfaction with life scale. Personality and Individual Differences, 54(5), 647-651.

The fear of happiness scale

1 2 3 4 5 6 7
Strongly disagree Somewhat disagree A little disagree Neither Agree or Disagree A little agree Somewhat agree Strongly agree
1. I prefer not to be too joyful, because usually joy is followed by sadness. 1 2 3 4 5 6 7
2. I believe the more cheerful and happy I am, the more I should expect

bad things to occur in my life.

1 2 3 4 5 6 7
3. Disasters often follow good fortune. 1 2 3 4 5 6 7
4. Having lots of joy and fun causes bad things to happen. 1 2 3 4 5 6 7
5. Excessive joy has some bad consequences. 1 2 3 4 5 6

7