Ep31 Susan Turk Charles
Professor of Psychological Science
"SAVI: A Model for Emotional Well-Being in Adulthood"
Today, with the help of or guest Susan Turk Charles, we’ll be discussing a fascinating model for understanding emotional well-being in older adults. It’s called the Strength and Vulnerability Integration model (conveniently shortened to SAVI). Susan and her team developed the SAVI model as an intervention to improve the mental and physical health of older adults.
SAVI is based on the idea that strengths and vulnerabilities are not opposing forces, but rather complementary ones that work together to create emotional resilience. Strengths include factors like social support, self-esteem, and a sense of control over one's life, while vulnerabilities include things like stress, negative life events, and health problems.
But the SAVI model also suggests that in order to achieve for optimal emotional well-being, a balance of strengths and vulnerabilities is necessary. So what does that all mean for you?
Susan Turk Charles is a Professor of Psychological Science and Nursing Science at the University of California-Irvine. She’s also a fellow of the Gerontological Society of America and the Association for Psychological Science. Susan has always been interested in how affective experience varies across the life span, and how socio-emotional experiences are related to differences in cognitive and health-related processes.
Also in this episode, we’ll be looking at the recent covid pandemic in relation to SAVI. Because while advanced age is generally associated with improved emotional well-being, the coronavirus 2019 pandemic unleashed a global stressor that gravely threatened the physical well-being and ostensibly challenged the emotional well-being of older adults disproportionately.