Successful Aging: Individual Differences in Creativity and Health in Midlife

Sophia Braha, Pace University


This study sought to examine individual differences in health and creativity in adults in midlife. There is little in the literature exploring the relationship between creative participation or creative ability and mental and physical health in adults. Using measures of divergent thinking, practical creativity, and creative activities, this study examined the relationships between creativity, physical health, and mental health, as well as individual differences. Participants were 193 adults between ages 40-60 who completed the survey online. Although the data did not demonstrate significant relationships between creative ability or creative participation with measures of mental or physical health, many interesting individual differences in creativity and health did emerge. More specifically, there was also evidence of a relationship between practical creativity and physical health for men. For women, creative ability and participation demonstrated a significant relationship. The relationships between employment status, health, and creativity differed by gender. Men who worked full-time had better health outcomes than men with other employment statuses. Women who reported participating in a greater number of everyday activities reported better health and mental health outcomes. Women who were unemployed reported lower levels of health and of creativity. The results also provide evidence for the validity of a practical creativity measures - a first validation of this new measurement. Additionally, intrinsic motivation was significantly related to all measures of creative ability. Future research should further examine individual difference in creativity and health, and their roles in successful aging.

Subject Area

Behavioral psychology|Aging

Recommended Citation

Braha, Sophia, "Successful Aging: Individual Differences in Creativity and Health in Midlife" (2019). ETD Collection for Pace University. AAI27771578.



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