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Relationships as the inputs and outputs of relationships.

UNCG Author/Contributor (non-UNCG co-authors, if there are any, appear on document)
Susan D. Calkins, Professor (Creator)
Institution
The University of North Carolina at Greensboro (UNCG )
Web Site: http://library.uncg.edu/

Abstract: The three target articles presented in this issue add to a growing body of literature in social psychology that focuses on the "executive function" of the self (Baumeister, 1998). That is, in these target articles the self is viewed as a regulator of mood or emotion. This perspective expands on the relationship between emotion and self-regulation by identifying emotion as not only a by-product of self-control (Carver & Scheier, 1990) but also as an explicit object of self-regulation. Tice and Bratslaysky (this issue) note that certain executive functions of the self with respect to emotion are similar to those in other domains of self-control. For instance, they note that individuals hold standards for appropriate emotional expression, monitor their actions with respect to their emotions, and assert control to obtain long-term goals. In his target article, Larsen (this issue) also shows that how the self functions as a controller in the emotional domain is similar to other control processes. He applies a general cybernetic control model to mood. According to this model an individual's current mood is compared to a desired mood state making mood the object of self-regulation. When discrepancies between the current mood and the desired mood are detected the self acts in its executive function capacity to invoke regulatory mechanisms intended to effect changes in the situation. Erber and Erber (this issue) present empirical data that document that individuals' use of regulatory mechanisms is dependent on their appraisals of the social constraints in a given situation. In their target article, the Erbers give concrete examples of the self as a regulator of mood highlighting the executive function of the self with respect to emotion.

Additional Information

Publication
Psychological Inquiry, 11, 160-163.
Language: English
Date: 2000
Keywords
Social psychology