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The behavioral restrictions disrupting daily life during the COVID-19 pandemic have profoundly impacted well-being, and health behaviors have been advocated to prevent decline. To understand how processes related to fluctuation in well-being unfold within individuals, analyses on the within-person level are required. In this preregistered intensive longitudinal study, 1,709 individuals from the Norwegian adult population provided data daily over 40 consecutive days during the pandemic. The responses were modeled in a multilevel vector autoregressive model to estimate within-person networks, across and within-day, and a between-person network. All three networks revealed productivity, relatedness, and optimism as positively associated. Social distancing was contemporaneously negatively associated with productivity and relatedness. Among behavioral factors, being physically active predicted lower relatedness across days but displayed positive associations with relatedness, productivity, and optimism contemporaneously. Alcohol consumption predicted lower productivity across and within-day, although revealing a positive association with optimism within-day. Being social online and feeling related to others displayed a temporal negative bidirectional relationship. In contrast, being social online was positively associated with optimism, productivity, and relatedness contemporaneously. Our study emphasizes the dynamic nature of well-being and its complex associations with behavioral factors during the pandemic. The study shed light on opposing associations of behavioral factors at the within- and between-person level.

Original publication




Journal article


Appl Psychol Health Well Being

Publication Date



COVID‐19, dynamic network analysis, general adult population, mlVAR, well‐being, within‐person