Knowing good from bad: The paradox of neuroticism, negative affect, and evaluative processing

Maya Tamir*, Michael D. Robinson

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

67 Scopus citations

Abstract

There are pragmatic benefits to trait-consistent mood states, especially when people are evaluating new objects within the environment (M. Tamir, M. D. Robinson, & G. L. Clore, 2002). The present studies, involving both naturally occurring (Studies 1 and 2) and manipulated (Study 3) mood states, demonstrated such trait-consistent interactions within the context of neuroticism and negative mood states. Individuals high in neuroticism were faster to make evaluations when in a negative mood state like sadness. By contrast, individuals low in neuroticism were faster to make evaluations when in a neutral mood state. The present studies demonstrate that although negative mood states are hedonically unpleasant, they can be beneficial in some ways for individuals high in neuroticism.

Original languageAmerican English
Pages (from-to)913-925
Number of pages13
JournalJournal of Personality and Social Psychology
Volume87
Issue number6
DOIs
StatePublished - Dec 2004
Externally publishedYes

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