What does my score mean?

In the original paper I asked this question, “How can we sanctimoniously apply absolute standards of wellness in a relative world?” I further explained that the term wellness as originally defined clearly implied that you should “do you.” From a health perspective, it is very clear that we are all different.

For example, I have a special needs daughter who I would characterize as highly well. My mother was in a wheelchair for 51-years and I would also characterize her as highly well. Why? I think both of them would think about their referent group and say to themselves, “Compared to them, I am very well.” And with the PWS, believing is the key.

Despite this, people still ask what their score means. I get it – we all want to do better than the next person. Without digging too deeply into past publications, in the original four samples from which the PWS was produced, the overall PWS score ranged from about 15.3 to about 16.5. It is instructive that the two manufacturing plant samples were nearly identical (15.31 and 15.35). It is also instructive that the administrative center and college student samples were basically the same (16.49 and 16.51).

So there you have it. I hope this helps!


The Perceived Wellness Story

In 1991, I enrolled at UT Austin. In one of the first meetings with my mentor, Mary Steinhardt, I suggested that if people followed the 7 Habits of Highly Effective People, they would be more well.

The implication for Mary was that wellness must be measured, so she asked, “how exactly do you propose to measure wellness?”  That question launched me on the most amazing intellectual journey of my life.

Despite challenges and a healthy degree of skepticism, my mentor, my friends and I persisted. Ultimately, the Perceived Wellness Survey (PWS) was born. I believe the PWS to be the most philosophically congruent, empirically supported measure of wellness available.

I hope that the PWS helps in your research efforts.