Elaine Nancy Aron

Elaine Nancy Aron
Stony Brook University | Stony Brook · Department of Psychology

Doctor of Philosophy

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59
Publications
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Publications

Publications (59)
Article
In this paper we review the self-expansion model in the context of close relationships, focusing primarily on work in the last 20 years, considering throughout variation in our samples across cultures and other demographics—both in existing studies and in potential implications for future research. The self-expansion model has two key principles. T...
Preprint
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Previously, researchers used functional MRI to identify regional brain activations associated with sensory processing sensitivity (SPS), a proposed normal phenotype trait. To further validate SPS as a behavioral entity, to characterize it anatomically, and to test the usefulness in psychology of methodologies that assess axonal properties, the pres...
Article
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Some children are more affected than others by their upbringing due to their increased sensitivity to the environment. More sensitive children are at heightened risk for the development of internalizing problems, particularly when experiencing unsupportive parenting. However, little is known about how the interplay between children’s sensitivity an...
Article
Background: Sensory processing sensitivity (SPS) is a biologically based temperament trait associated with enhanced awareness and responsivity to environmental and social stimuli. Individuals with high SPS are more affected by their environments, which may result in overarousal, cognitive depletion, and fatigue. Method: We examined individual di...
Preprint
People differ in their sensitivity to similar experiences with some being generally more and some less sensitive. Several theories have been developed over the years to describe such differences in Environmental Sensitivity and a growing number of studies provide empirical evidence that some people are indeed more affected than others by environmen...
Article
According to several developmental theories some children are more sensitive to the quality of their environment than others, but most supporting empirical evidence is based on relatively distal markers of hypothesized sensitivity. This study provides evidence for the validity of behaviorally observed Environmental Sensitivity as a moderator of par...
Article
To explore the relationship between sensory processing sensitivity (SPS) and parental subjective experience (PSE). SPS is a temperament trait characterized by greater sensitivity to environmental and social stimuli; no previous research has examined the relation of SPS to PSE (e.g., how much parents feel parenting is difficult or feel connected to...
Article
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Sensory Processing Sensitivity (SPS) is a common, heritable and evolutionarily conserved trait describing inter-individual differences in sensitivity to both negative and positive environments. Despite societal interest in SPS, scientific knowledge is lagging behind. Here, we critically discuss how SPS relates to other theories, how to measure SPS,...
Preprint
Full-text available
Sensory Processing Sensitivity (SPS) is a trait describing inter-individual differences in sensitivity to environments, both positive and negative ones. SPS has attracted growing societal interest. However, (neuro)scientific evidence is lagging behind. We critically discuss how to measure SPS, how it relates to other theories of Environmental Sensi...
Article
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During the past decade, research on the biological basis of sensory processing sensitivity (SPS)—a genetically based trait associated with greater sensitivity and responsivity to environmental and social stimuli—has burgeoned. As researchers try to characterize this trait, it is still unclear how SPS is distinct from seemingly related clinical diso...
Article
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According to empirical studies and recent theories, people differ substantially in their reactivity or sensitivity to environmental influences with some being generally more affected than others. More sensitive individuals have been described as orchids and less-sensitive ones as dandelions. Applying a data-driven approach, we explored the existenc...
Article
Current research supports the notion that the apparently innate trait Sensory Processing Sensitivity (SPS) may act as a modulator of development as function of the environment. Interestingly, the common serotonin transporter linked polymorphic region (5-HTTLPR) does the same. While neural mechanisms underlying SPS are largely unknown, those associa...
Article
Full-text available
Sensory processing sensitivity (SPS) is a temperament trait found in around 20% of humans, which has been found to enhance responsiveness to diverse stimuli. In this study, we investigated for the first time the extent to which SPS, and its interaction with quality of parenting, predicts positive and negative experiences in response to emotional st...
Chapter
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and Keywords This chapter provides an overview of theory and research addressing temperament and personality, particularly as these are relevant to clinical applications. Our review begins with a brief history of influential frameworks and foundational constructs, including aspects they share in common and others engendering disagreement. Measureme...
Article
Lamy’s view coincides with much of the self-expansion model of love, but also suggests potential interesting directions for expanding it and integrating it with other ideas. These include the potential role of anticipated rapid self-development through falling in love itself being a self-expansion motivation, which although consistent with the mode...
Article
Three men—Jung, Buber, and Maharishi Mahesh Yogi—are invited to dinner with the author in her active imagination. Each devoted their lives to healing the collective psyche, decimated after two world wars, and to preventing worse devastation in the future. Each provided a body of knowledge and a path. And each steadfastly rejected the paths the othe...
Article
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Background Theory and research suggest that sensory processing sensitivity (SPS), found in roughly 20% of humans and over 100 other species, is a trait associated with greater sensitivity and responsiveness to the environment and to social stimuli. Self-report studies have shown that high-SPS individuals are strongly affected by others' moods, but...
Data
Table S1. Regions of interest (ROIs) used to examine regional brain activations for an fMRI study of sensory processing sensitivity.
Article
Full-text available
This article reviews the literature on sensory processing sensitivity (SPS) in light of growing evidence from evolutionary biology that many personality differences in nonhuman species involve being more or less responsive, reactive, flexible, or sensitive to the environment. After briefly defining SPS, it first discusses how biologists studying an...
Article
This chapter reports the development and results related with different types of shyness in adolescents and adults. It specifically describes the research and theory on shyness with a focus on the varieties of shyness that are experienced during adolescence and adulthood. After considering the distinction between early-and later-developing shyness,...
Article
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This study focused on a possible temperament-by-culture interaction. Specifically, it explored whether a basic temperament/personality trait (sensory processing sensitivity; SPS), perhaps having a genetic component, might moderate a previously established cultural difference in neural responses when making context-dependent vs context-independent j...
Article
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This exploratory study examined the extent to which individual differences in sensory processing sensitivity (SPS), a temperament/personality trait characterized by social, emotional and physical sensitivity, are associated with neural response in visual areas in response to subtle changes in visual scenes. Sixteen participants completed the Highly...
Chapter
Self-expansion MotivationIncluding Other in the SelfImplications of Including Other in the Self for Other Social Psychology TopicsConclusions
Article
The self-expansion model of love developed out of a confluence of research on attraction and arousal, Eastern psychology, motivation theory, and the social psychology of personal relationships. The model treats love (the desire for a relationship with a particular other) as arising from a desire to expand the self by including that other in the sel...
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This article examines the relation between adult shyness and sensory-processing sensitivity and posits a new model in which the interaction of sensitivity and adverse childhood environment leads to negative affectivity (with the highly sensitive being more impacted), which in turn leads to shyness. Consistent with this model, two questionnaire stud...
Article
Jung suggested that innate sensitiveness predisposes some individuals to be particularly affected by negative childhood experiences, so that later, when under pressure to adapt to some challenge, they retreat into infantile fantasies based on those experiences and become neurotic. Recent research by the author and others is reviewed to support Jung...
Article
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The first portion of this paper reviews the concept of innate sensitiveness (present in about twenty percent of the population) as employed by Jung and in the empirical research conducted by the author and others. Both veins of scholarship suggest that being born highly sensitive interacts with experiences of trauma in childhood to produce more neu...
Article
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We propose that to some extent, people treat the resources, perspectives, and identities of close others as their own. This proposal is supported by allocation, attribution, response time, and memory experiments. Recently, we have applied this idea to deepening understanding of feeling “too close” (including too much of the other in the self leadin...
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Using a newspaper questionnaire, a door-to-door survey, and 3 laboratory experiments, the authors examined a proposed effect of shared participation in novel and arousing activities on experienced relationship quality. The questionnaire and survey studies found predicted correlations of reported shared "exciting" activities and relationship satisfa...
Article
Consistent with a mini-theory of motivational factors in unreciprocated love, (a) perceived potential value of a relationship with another; perceived probability of such a relationship; and desirability of the state of being in love with this other, even if it is unreciprocated, were each significantly and independently predictive of reported inten...
Article
This article explores the motivational aspects of the self-expansion model, focusing on 2 key themes: (1) the desire to expand the resources, perspectives, and identities available for accomplishing goals and (2) the desire to experience positive affect arising from the process of such expansion. These themes are considered in the context of curren...
Article
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Over a series of 7 studies that used diverse samples and measures, this research identified a unidimensional core variable of high sensory-processing sensitivity and demonstrated its partial independence from social introversion and emotionality, variables with which it had been confused or subsumed in most previous theorizing by personality resear...
Article
Bizarre love might be defined as that which is not explainable as simply an extreme case of the usual. We first examined various theoretical perspectives on extreme love, including developmental history and personality and a self-expansion motive. We then reanalyzed several previously collected data sets finding predicted perceived qualities of the...
Article
A practical methodology is presented for creating closeness in an experimental context. Whether or not an individual is in a relationship, particular pairings of individuals in the relationship, and circumstances of relationship development become manipulated variables. Over a 45-min period subject pairs carry out self-disclosure and relationship-b...
Article
Examines thinking and research relevant to the self-expansion model of motivation and cognition in close relationships. It begins with an explanation of the key elements of the model, followed by a comment on the utility of a model of this kind in terms of the role of metaphor in science. The chapter then considers 2 key processes suggested by the...
Article
Two prospective, longitudinal studies examined the consequences of falling in love, focusing on predictions developed in the context of A. Aron and E. N. Aron's (1986, in press) self-expansion model of motivation and cognition in close relationships. In each study a sample with a high expected incidence of falling in love (first- and second-year un...
Article
We briefly consider three areas in which we think our field could usefully place more emphasis. First, we argue that when relationship researchers ignore deep, passionate relational experiences, it is at substantial cost to their understanding of relationship life. Second, we suggest that progress in our field requires theory that integrates movita...
Article
In 2 studies, the Inclusion of Other in the Self (IOS) Scale, a single-item, pictorial measure of closeness, demonstrated alternate-form and test–retest reliability; convergent validity with the Relationship Closeness Inventory (E. Berscheid et al, 1989), the R. J. Sternberg (1988) Intimacy Scale, and other measures; discriminant validity; minimal...
Article
The cognitive significance of being in a close relationship is described in terms of including other in the self (in K. Lewin's [1948] sense of overlapping regions of the life space and in W. James [1890/1948] sense of the self as resources, perspectives, and characteristics). Exp 1 (with 24 college students), adapting W. B. Liebrand's (see record...
Article
Accounts of falling in love were obtained from three samples: (a) lengthy accounts from fifty undergraduates who had fallen in love in the last 8 months; (b) brief accounts from 100 adult nonstudents, which were compared to 100 brief falling-in-friendship accounts from the same population; and (c) questionnaire responses about falling-in-love exper...
Article
This book explores a single theme—that the emotions, cognitions, and behaviors of love can be understood in terms of a basic motivation to expand the self. It also provides a broad overview of the literature on interpersonal attraction and on the maintenance of close relationships—not only romantic relationships, but friendship, sibling, and parent...
Article
No set of external variables or life events has been found to account for more than about 20% of an individual's reported long-term happiness. Therefore, this article considers lines of evidence suggesting that a large amount cf the variance is accounted for by inner, background conditions such as perception and response set-probably influenced by...
Article
17 married women who had received instruction in the Transcendental Meditation program were compared to 17 controls (matched for length of marriage, age, and neighborhood) on Locke's Marital Adjustment Inventory. Interviewees did not know the study was related to meditation or that they were contacted because they were meditators. Subjects in the T...
Article
This paper first reviews research associating a decline in addictive behavior in the general population with continued practice of the Transcendental Meditation (TM) program and research suggesting that it may be a useful adjunctive treatment modality for those with identified addiction problems. The next section considers possible explanations for...
Article
In this third edition of this statistics textbook, the authors have tried to maintain things that have been especially appreciated, while reworking the book to take into account the feedback they have received, their own experiences, and advances and changes in the field of statistics. The authors have also added new pedagogical features to make th...

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