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J Pers Soc Psychol. 1995 Jul;69(1):176-90.

Effects of self-focused rumination on negative thinking and interpersonal problem solving.

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Department of Psychology, Stanford University, California, USA.


Hypotheses about the effects of self-focused rumination on interpretations of events and interpersonal problem solving were tested in 3 studies with dysphoric and nondysphoric participants. Study 1 supported the hypothesis that dysphoric participants induced to ruminatively self-focus on their feelings and personal characteristics would endorse more negative, biased interpretations of hypothetical situations than dysphoric participants induced to distract themselves from their mood, or nondysphoric participants. Study 2 showed that dysphoric participants who ruminated were more pessimistic about positive events in their future than the other 3 groups. Study 3 showed that dysphoric ruminating participants generated less effective solutions to interpersonal problems than the other 3 groups. In Studies 1 and 3, dysphoric ruminating participants also offered the most pessimistic explanations for interpersonal problems and hypothetical negative events. In all 3 studies, dysphoric participants who distracted were as optimistic and effective in solving problems as non-dysphoric participants.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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