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Temporal Anchoring of Positive Reappraisal

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In the current work, we provide an overview of extant knowledge about effects of positive reappraisal and conduct two studies that explore a novel differentiation of positive reappraisal. Our framework distinguishes the types of positive reappraisal based on temporal anchoring of one’s cognitive change. We suggest that when people engage in positive reappraisal, they can use past, present or future events to change the way they think about a current stressor. In the pilot study and two main studies, we investigated the differences in past-oriented and future-oriented types of reappraisal. We suggested that future-oriented positive reappraisal, due to its relative flexibility, might promote higher generativity and be particularly beneficial for improving current affect compared with past-oriented reappraisal. We also hypothesized that people might be inclined to use future-oriented reappraisals in situations involving dealing with novel negative circumstances while past-oriented positive reappraisals might be most utilized in situations that involve subjectively familiar stressors. The findings demonstrated that people generally tend to use reappraisals that are more future-oriented rather than past-oriented. While participants in Study 1 did not generate significantly more future-oriented reappraisals than past-oriented reappraisals, they reported higher increases in positive affect after using future-oriented reappraisals rather than past-oriented reappraisals. The results of Study 2 indicated that people do tend to use more past-oriented reappraisals in stressful situations that are more familiar to them in comparison to less familiar situations. However, no relationship between the use of future-oriented reappraisals and familiarity of a stressor was detected. Our results suggest that there is a clear distinction between past-oriented and future-oriented types of positive reappraisal, which provides a new dimension for investigating the effectiveness of positive reappraisal.
Vlasenko, Valeriia (author)
Waugh, Christian (committee chair)
Petrocelli, John (committee member)
Crockett, Jamie (committee member)
Masicampo, E.J. (committee member)
2021-09-01T08:35:45Z (accessioned)
2021-09-01T08:35:45Z (available)
2021 (issued)
Psychology (discipline)
http://hdl.handle.net/10339/99077 (uri)
en (iso)
Wake Forest University
Temporal Anchoring of Positive Reappraisal

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