Strategies for Reducing the Stress of Negative Life Experiences: An Averaging/Summation Analysis

ASU Author/Contributor (non-ASU co-authors, if there are any, appear on document)
Todd McElroy Ph.D. (Creator)
Appalachian State University (ASU )
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Abstract: Experiments 1 through 4 investigated how different orientations to stimulus events influenced whether the addition of a mildly negative stressor to a highly negative one did or did not decrease stress. In Experiment 1, reductions in stress levels were obtained when perceivers concentrated on the negative implications of each stressor but not when they concentrated on the implications associated with the entire situation. In Experiments 2 and 3, reductions in stress were obtained when participants were asked to think about a mildly negative event in addition to a highly negative one, but this effect was reduced when participants overtly appraised each stressor before reporting their overall stress reaction. In Experiment 4, stress reductions were obtained when participants were induced to think about either two or four of the negative implications associated with a single stressor but not when they thought about six negative implications.

Additional Information

Seta, J. J., Seta, C. E., & McElroy, T. (2002). Strategies for educing the stress of negative life experiences: An averaging/summation analysis. Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin, 28: 1574-1585. Published by SAGE (ISSN: 0146-1672).
Language: English
Date: 2002

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