Date of Submission


Degree Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Psychology (PsyD)



Department Chair

Robert A DiTomasso, PhD, ABPP


The relationship between health behaviors and three psychological variables that included optimism, self-efficacy, and sensation seeking was investigated in this study. A demographic form, the Health Adherence Behavior Inventory (HABIT), the General Self-Efficacy Scale (GSE), the Life Orientation Test-Revised (LOT-R), and the Brief Sensation Seeking Scale (BSSS-8) were administered to 258 participants. The data were analyzed for two separate and independent samples based on gender. Results indicated that self-efficacy predicted male health behaviors while optimism predicted female health behaviors. In addition, men scored higher than women on self-reported sensation-seeking behaviors, as predicted. Limitations of this research and directions for further research are discussed. These findings may have indications for primary-care physicians, as they may better understand factors related to patient adherence.

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