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What Do You Do When You Don’t Feel What You’re Supposed To?

Unrecognizable young woman in checked shirt hiding her face under smiling mask while standing against wooden wall, waist-up portrait
People sometimes fake their feelings to meet their partner’s expectations, and sometimes they honestly express what they feel. Does it matter?

Should You Try to Hide Your Negative Emotions from Your Kids?

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Many parents try to protect their children by hiding their negative emotions, but that might not always be a good idea.

Emotions Matter More for People’s Life Satisfaction in Religious than Secular Countries

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How much you use your feelings to judge the quality of your life may depend on whether your country is mostly religious or secular.

Timing Matters: Patterns of Emotion Dynamics Between Mothers and Children During Adolescence

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By Alexandra Main

Adolescence is a time period when a children’s relationships with their parents can undergo transformations that increase conflict and negative emotion (Laursen & Collins, 2009). To better understand how these conflicts are managed, my colleagues and I analyzed the emotion dynamics—i.e., the patterns of emotional exchange between parents and adolescents—during conflict discussions.

Psychology News Roundup: ICYMI August 31, 2020

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It's been a while, but we're back with the latest news, blog posts, and tweets. We'll publish on our member forum Connect! every week, and here on Character and Context every 2 weeks. To start we'll do a few highlights.

Read what you may have missed in the world of personality and social psychology on this ICYMI roundup.

Recently in the news, written a post, or have selections you'd like us to consider? Email us, use the hashtag #SPSPblog, or tweet us directly @spspnews. 

The Paradoxical Wonderfulness of Knowing the End of Life is Approaching

Senior woman on a porch
You might expect those who know that death is not too far away, such as senior citizens, would be bummed out. But seniors are usually happier than younger people.

The Goodness of Guilt: Problems Measuring the Mind

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Researchers are split over guilt. Many of them think that guilt is negative—it feels bad, it’s related to poor functioning, and it’s something we should reduce in our lives. (That may be your assessment, too.) 

But another group of researchers suggests that guilt is good. It leads people to take actions to repair relationships and engage in prosocial behavior. Our attempts to get rid of guilt lead to good behavior—and ultimately the guilt experience and response is positive. 

Liberals Are More Emotion-Driven Than Conservatives

Emotions are powerful motivators of human behavior and attitudes. Emotions also play an important role in guiding policy support in conflict and other political contexts. Researchers at Tel Aviv University and the Interdisciplinary Center in Herzliya have studied the interaction between emotion and political ideology, showing that the motivating power of emotions is not the same for those on different ends of the ideological spectrum. Their research is published in Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin.

Design of the study

Receiving Gossip About Others Promotes Self-Reflection and Growth

Gossip is pervasive in our society, and our penchant for gossip can be found in most of our everyday conversations. Why are individuals interested in hearing gossip about others’ achievements and failures? Researchers at the University of Groningen in the Netherlands studied the effect positive and negative gossip has on how the recipient evaluates him or herself. The study is published in Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin.