Implicit positive emotion counteracts ego depletion

Jun Ren1, Lingyun Hu1, Hongying Zhang1, Zihui Huang1
1Zhejiang Normal University, People’s Republic of China
Cite this article:  Ren, J., Hu, L., Zhang, H., & Huang, Z. (2010). Implicit positive emotion counteracts ego depletion. Social Behavior and Personality: An international journal, 38(7), 919-928.

Volume 38 Issue 7 | e2042 | Published: August 2010 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.2224/sbp.2010.38.7.919

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Previous researchers have shown that individual acts of self-regulation deplete individual psychological resources, resulting in poor subsequent self-regulation and ego depletion. It has also been shown that to counteract ego depletion, besides getting enough sleep or rest, positive emotions are important. In this study we aimed to establish whether or not implicit positive emotion is important in countering ego depletion. In 2 experiments measuring the duration of self-regulation after implicit positive emotion it was found that self-regulation counteracts ego depletion. Participants in an ego-depleted condition were exposed to subliminal positive stimuli and they persisted in subsequent self-regulation longer than another group of participants who were exposed to subliminal neutral stimuli.

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