Sad mood promotes self-initiated mental contrasting of future and reality

Heather Barry Kappes, Gabriele Oettingen, Doris Mayer, Sam Maglio

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

Self-regulation by mentally contrasting a positive future with negative reality leads people to differentiate in their goal commitments: They commit to goals when expectations of success are high and let go when expectations of success are low. On the contrary, when indulging in the positive future or dwelling on negative reality, people fail to consider expectations of success and do not form selective goal commitments (Oettingen, Pak, & Schnetter, 2001). Whereas prior research has examined the effects of experimentally induced mental contrasting, we address sad mood as a contextual influence promoting self-initiated mental contrasting. Across various mood inductions, sad moods-which are associated with problem solving strategies-facilitated self-initiated mental contrasting more than neutral moods (Studies 1, 5) or happy moods (Studies 2, 3, 4, 6). Importantly, mood did not affect the relation between mental contrasting and selective formation of goal commitment (Studies 5, 6). The results suggest that sad moods aid in self-regulation by making people self-initiate goal commitments that are sensitive to their expectations of success.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1206-1222
Number of pages17
JournalEmotion
Volume11
Issue number5
DOIs
StatePublished - Oct 2011

Fingerprint

Research
Self-Control

Keywords

  • Expectations
  • Goals
  • Indulging
  • Mental contrasting
  • Mood
  • Self-regulation

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Psychology(all)

Cite this

Sad mood promotes self-initiated mental contrasting of future and reality. / Kappes, Heather Barry; Oettingen, Gabriele; Mayer, Doris; Maglio, Sam.

In: Emotion, Vol. 11, No. 5, 10.2011, p. 1206-1222.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Kappes, Heather Barry ; Oettingen, Gabriele ; Mayer, Doris ; Maglio, Sam. / Sad mood promotes self-initiated mental contrasting of future and reality. In: Emotion. 2011 ; Vol. 11, No. 5. pp. 1206-1222.
@article{64894b62de8e433a98fb1246f7ca1ce9,
title = "Sad mood promotes self-initiated mental contrasting of future and reality",
abstract = "Self-regulation by mentally contrasting a positive future with negative reality leads people to differentiate in their goal commitments: They commit to goals when expectations of success are high and let go when expectations of success are low. On the contrary, when indulging in the positive future or dwelling on negative reality, people fail to consider expectations of success and do not form selective goal commitments (Oettingen, Pak, & Schnetter, 2001). Whereas prior research has examined the effects of experimentally induced mental contrasting, we address sad mood as a contextual influence promoting self-initiated mental contrasting. Across various mood inductions, sad moods-which are associated with problem solving strategies-facilitated self-initiated mental contrasting more than neutral moods (Studies 1, 5) or happy moods (Studies 2, 3, 4, 6). Importantly, mood did not affect the relation between mental contrasting and selective formation of goal commitment (Studies 5, 6). The results suggest that sad moods aid in self-regulation by making people self-initiate goal commitments that are sensitive to their expectations of success.",
keywords = "Expectations, Goals, Indulging, Mental contrasting, Mood, Self-regulation",
author = "Kappes, {Heather Barry} and Gabriele Oettingen and Doris Mayer and Sam Maglio",
year = "2011",
month = "10",
doi = "10.1037/a0023983",
language = "English (US)",
volume = "11",
pages = "1206--1222",
journal = "Emotion",
issn = "1528-3542",
publisher = "American Psychological Association Inc.",
number = "5",

}

TY - JOUR

T1 - Sad mood promotes self-initiated mental contrasting of future and reality

AU - Kappes, Heather Barry

AU - Oettingen, Gabriele

AU - Mayer, Doris

AU - Maglio, Sam

PY - 2011/10

Y1 - 2011/10

N2 - Self-regulation by mentally contrasting a positive future with negative reality leads people to differentiate in their goal commitments: They commit to goals when expectations of success are high and let go when expectations of success are low. On the contrary, when indulging in the positive future or dwelling on negative reality, people fail to consider expectations of success and do not form selective goal commitments (Oettingen, Pak, & Schnetter, 2001). Whereas prior research has examined the effects of experimentally induced mental contrasting, we address sad mood as a contextual influence promoting self-initiated mental contrasting. Across various mood inductions, sad moods-which are associated with problem solving strategies-facilitated self-initiated mental contrasting more than neutral moods (Studies 1, 5) or happy moods (Studies 2, 3, 4, 6). Importantly, mood did not affect the relation between mental contrasting and selective formation of goal commitment (Studies 5, 6). The results suggest that sad moods aid in self-regulation by making people self-initiate goal commitments that are sensitive to their expectations of success.

AB - Self-regulation by mentally contrasting a positive future with negative reality leads people to differentiate in their goal commitments: They commit to goals when expectations of success are high and let go when expectations of success are low. On the contrary, when indulging in the positive future or dwelling on negative reality, people fail to consider expectations of success and do not form selective goal commitments (Oettingen, Pak, & Schnetter, 2001). Whereas prior research has examined the effects of experimentally induced mental contrasting, we address sad mood as a contextual influence promoting self-initiated mental contrasting. Across various mood inductions, sad moods-which are associated with problem solving strategies-facilitated self-initiated mental contrasting more than neutral moods (Studies 1, 5) or happy moods (Studies 2, 3, 4, 6). Importantly, mood did not affect the relation between mental contrasting and selective formation of goal commitment (Studies 5, 6). The results suggest that sad moods aid in self-regulation by making people self-initiate goal commitments that are sensitive to their expectations of success.

KW - Expectations

KW - Goals

KW - Indulging

KW - Mental contrasting

KW - Mood

KW - Self-regulation

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/record.url?scp=80053936471&partnerID=8YFLogxK

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/citedby.url?scp=80053936471&partnerID=8YFLogxK

U2 - 10.1037/a0023983

DO - 10.1037/a0023983

M3 - Article

VL - 11

SP - 1206

EP - 1222

JO - Emotion

JF - Emotion

SN - 1528-3542

IS - 5

ER -