4. Positive feelings
This facet examines how much a person experiences positive feelings of contentment, balance, peace, happiness, hopefulness, joy and enjoyment of the good things in life. A person’s view of, and feelings about the future are seen as an important part of this facet. For many respondents this facet may be regarded as synonymous with quality of life. Negative feelings are not included as these are covered elsewhere.
5. Thinking, learning, memory and concentration
This facet explores a person’s view of his/her thinking, learning, memory, concentration and ability to make decisions. This incorporates the speed of thinking and clarity of thought. Questions disregard whether a person is alert, aware or awake, even though these underlie thinking, memory and concentration. It is acknowledged that some people with cognitive difficulties may have no insight into their difficulties, and in these cases proxy evaluations may be a necessary addition to the person’s subjective evaluation. A similar problem may be a reluctance to admit to problems in this area among some respondents.
This facet examines how people feel about themselves. This might range from feeling positive about themselves to feeling extremely negative about themselves. A person’s sense of worth as a person is explored. The aspect of self esteem concerned with a person’s feeling of self-efficacy, satisfaction with oneself and control is also included in the focus of this facet.
Questions are likely to include people’s feelings about themselves in a range of areas: how they are able to get along with other people; their education; their appraisal of their ability to change or accomplish particular tasks or behaviours; their family relations; and their sense of dignity and self-acceptance. To some people self-esteem depends largely on how they function, whether at work, at home or how they are perceived and treated by others. In some cultures self-esteem is the esteem felt within the family rather than individual self-esteem. It is assumed that questions will be interpreted by respondents in ways that are meaningful and relevant to their position in life.
Questions do not include specific references to body image and social relationships as these are covered in different areas. However, the sense of self-worth that comes from these areas is intended to be covered by the questions though at a more general level. It is acknowledged that some people may find self-esteem difficult to talk about, and questions are framed trying to take this into account.
7. Body image and appearance
This facet examines the person’s view of his/her body. Whether the appearance of the body is seen in a positive or negative way is included in this facet. The focus is on the person’s satisfaction with the way he/she looks and the effect it has on his/her self-concept. This includes the extent to which “perceived” or actual bodily impairments, if present, can be corrected (e.g. by make-up, clothing, artificial limbs, etc.).
How others respond to a person’s appearance is likely to affect the person’s body image very considerably. The phrasing of the questions aims to encourage respondents to answer how they really feel rather than how they feel they should respond. In addition they are phrased so as to be able to include a person who is happy with the way they look as well as someone who is severely physically handicapped.
8. Negative feelings
This facet concerns how much a person experiences negative feelings, including despondency, guilt, sadness, tearfulness, despair, nervousness, anxiety and a lack of pleasure in life. The facet includes a consideration of how distressing any negative feelings are and their impact on the person’s day-to-day functioning. Questions are framed so as to include people with quite disabling psychological difficulties such as severe depression, mania or panic attacks.
Questions do not include poor concentration, nor the relationship between negative affect and the person’s social relationships because these are covered elsewhere. Nor do questions include any detailed assessment of the severity of the negative feelings.