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J Soc Psychol. 2012 Mar-Apr;152(2):246-60.

Does regulating others' feelings influence people's own affective well-being?

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  • 1University of Manchester, Manchester Business School, Booth St. W, Manchester M15 6PB, UK. karen.niven@mbs.ac.uk

Abstract

Individuals in a variety of social contexts try to regulate other people's feelings, but how does this process affect the regulators themselves? This research aimed to establish a relationship between people's use of interpersonal affect regulation and their own affective well-being. In a field study, self- and other-reported data were collected from prisoners and staff members in a therapeutic prison using two surveys separated in time. In a laboratory study, a student sample reported their affect before and after attempting to influence the feelings of talent show contestants in a role-play task. The results of both studies indicated congruent associations between the use of affect-improving and affect-worsening interpersonal affect regulation and strategy agents' affective well-being. Our findings highlight that, when performing interpersonal affect regulation, people may not be immune from the effects of their own actions.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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