Emotion Regulation: Antecedents and Well-Being Outcomes of Cognitive Reappraisal and Expressive Suppression in Cross-Cultural Samples

Journal of Happiness Studies (Impact Factor: 1.88). 06/2009; 10(3):271-291. DOI: 10.1007/s10902-007-9080-3

ABSTRACT Habitual emotional state is a predictor of long-term health and life expectancy and successful emotion regulation is necessary
for adaptive functioning. However, people are often unsuccessful in regulating their emotions. We investigated the use of
cognitive reappraisal and expressive suppression in 489 university students in Norway, Australia, and the United States and
how these strategies related to measures of well-being (affect, life satisfaction, and depressed mood). Data was collected
by means of selfadministered questionnaires. The major aims of the study were to begin to explore the prevalence of use of
cognitive reappraisal and expressive suppression across gender, age and culture, possible antecedents of emotion regulation
strategies, and the influence of emotion regulation upon well-being. Results showed that the use of emotion regulation strategies
varied across age, gender and culture. Private self-consciousness (self-reflection and insight) was found to be a central
antecedent for the use of cognitive reappraisal. Use of emotion regulation strategies predicted well-being outcomes, also
after the effect of extraversion and neuroticism had been controlled for. Generally, increased use of cognitive reappraisal
predicted increased levels of positive well-being outcomes, while increased use of expressive suppression predicted increased
levels of negative well-being outcomes.