Since the summer of 2020, Frederic has been conducting a professional study for the research of joy exemplars.

The purpose of this research

The purpose of this professional study is to hear from a diverse group of adults who have been identified by others as appreciating the value of joy and who recognize themselves as possessing a high and frequent level of joy in their lives.
Frédéric is particularly interested in the "source" messages that led to the participants' experience of joy, and its impact on the physical, emotional, somatic, spiritual and relational levels. This means identifying the information or messages that have been internalized by the participants at an identity level and that have allowed them to integrate a high level of joy into their normal, daily emotional life.

How will the data be collected ?

1. Through questionnaires

Participants are asked to fill out 2 questionnaires: a demographic one to isolate the particularities of their situation and a second one specifically about joy.

This joy questionnaire is composed of 3 parts: the experience of joy, the evaluation of the mastery of 40 rare joy skills, and finally ranking the importance of certain joy skills according to specific contexts.

2. The case studies

Frederic plans to both construct case studies based on the experiences and perspectives of participants, but also to examine the differences and similarities between individual cases in order to find common themes and look for key distinctions.
This will take the form of a semi-directive interview of about 2 hours, which will then be transcribed, coded and analyzed.
Slide Image
Slide Image
Slide Image
Slide Image

3. Personality assessments

The present investigator also plans to study the personality of joy using the Intelli7 personality assessment. Its goal is to identify the role of certain personality-related mechanisms, and more specifically the coping skills of individuals, in the experience of joy.

In this logic, he will finally try to build the typical profile of a joyful personality based on the results of the different personality assessments of the participants.

This data collection is done to allow for a rigorous understanding of the development and structuring of joy in participants, with the hope that the findings will help individuals, families, communities, and organizations better understand and nurture their joy and that of others around them.
Do you know a particularly happy person? Frédéric would be grateful if you could put him in touch with them (with their permission), so please send him a message at!

Why this research ?

Frederic J. Defoy spent three years working at the Center for Human Thrive for Human Development at Fuller Theological Seminary's School of Psychology, where he collected various conceptual elements on joy from a psychological and theological perspective and co-authored a theory of joy that was published in the Journal of Psychology and Theology in 2020. He now wishes to test this theory by exposing it to the reality of some people's experiences of joy.

This initiative is a professional investigation that Frédéric J. Defoy initiated as part of his work as a professional coach. In addition, he holds a master's degree in psychological sciences which allows him to integrate a research approach into his professional activity. Over the years, he has accompanied many people in situations of responsibility on issues related to joy. Now that he is in possession of quality data from the academic world, he wants to test them with real people in order to identify certain levers that could possibly help his clients in the future.

Screenshot 2023-01-05 at 12.07.09