University of Alaska Anchorage

Purpose in Life - Britteny Howell

Health & Purpose-in-Life (PIL) among Low-Income Older Adults in Urban Alaska

Project Introduction

Purpose-in-life (PIL) is evident when individuals can articulate goals, a sense of direction, and meaning in their lives. A higher sense of PIL is linked with lower incidence of chronic conditions, disability, and early mortality among older adults (65+ years).

Research has demonstrated a wide variety of psychological and social factors that may contribute to the pathways between PIL and health outcomes for older adults, including social support, resilience, personality traits, health literacy, and access to healthcare. However, it is unclear which psychosocial factors may contribute to PIL and the strength of those relationships to healthy aging outcomes among low-income older adults in urban Alaska.