Under Trump, Americans See Less Purpose In Their Lives, Poll Shows

Trump's America seems to be having an existential crisis.

More Americans are emotionally drained and have been struggling to find purpose in their lives in the past year — with Democrats, women and minorities feeling the worst, a new Gallup poll showed Wednesday. The poll found overall well-being among U.S. adults has declined significantly in 2017, which coincides with Donald Trump's first year as president and reverses a three-year upward trend in the survey.

"Whether you’re Republican or Democrat, there’s an increased probability you’ll be in relationships that are more contentious," said Dan Witters, who directed the research. "There’s going to be more arguing and more negativity than there used to be around the dinner table. That’s going to hold true regardless of whether you’re pro or anti Trump. But that swirling animosity, mixing it up at the dinner table, that’s real."

Gallup found America's overall Well-Being Index is at 61.5 out of 100. That's a drop from 62.1 in 2016, not to mention 61.7 in 2015 and 61.6 in 2014.

The Well-Being Index is based on 135,000 interviews with U.S. adults across all 50 states from Jan. 2 through Sept. 30, 2017. The index comprises metrics based on "five essential elements of well-being": Purpose, Social, Financial, Community, Physical.

Participants were asked questions such as whether their family and friends gave them energy on a daily basis, which would fall under the "Social" element of well-being, and they answered on a scale of one to five, from strongly disagree to strongly agree. 

Based on Gallup's findings, the overall decline in the well-being of American adults is specifically linked to drops in emotional health, social well-being and purpose well-being. 

The poll shows Americans in 2017 are more worried on a daily bais and increasingly find "little interest or pleasure in doing things at least some of the time." According to the findings, Americans are also less likely to view their friends and family as a source of positivity in their lives. What's more, the poll showed more Americans feel there is not a leader who makes them "enthusiastic about the future." 

Overall well-being plummeted especially for Democrats, women, black people, Hispanic people and low-income individuals. Meanwhile, the score for men did not change.

Other research also shows Americans are feeling extremely pessimistic in the era of Trump. A recent poll from the American Psychological Association, for example, found 63 percent of Americans feel the future of the country is a significant source of stress in their lives. The poll also found 59 percent feel right now is the "lowest point in our nation’s history that they can remember."

Trump is a historically unpopular president and currently has a 37 percent approval rating, according to a recent Washington Post/ABC poll. This falls in line with other national polls, which have often shown him scoring the lowest approval ratings on record. Gallup, for example, places Trump's approval at 38 percent. 

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