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Abstract

Research on emotion conducted so far has ignored situations where the subject experiences a certain emotion, but where the external stimulus that evoked and upholds this emotion suddenly disappears. This kind of situation, however, is relatively common in everyday life. This article attempts to recognize certain consequences of those conditions under which the stimuli justifying our experience of such emotional states as fear or joy suddenly disappear. Research done to date by the author and colleagues indicates increased compliance of the subject when addressed with various requests, commands, or suggestions in the situation termed here "emotional seesaw." The classical "live" example that illustrates this principle is the type of "good cop-bad cop" interrogation procedure. The probable mechanism underlying increased compliance under these conditions is connected with the fact that every emotion generates its own specific behavior program. When this program suddenly proves to be totally inadequate to new, modified external circumstances, the subject begins functioning "mindlessly." This permits automatic reactions, which take no account for the peculiarity of the current situation. Another group of experiments presented in this article shows that the subject's cognitive functioning is disturbed under emotional seesaw conditions. Such a disturbance embraces not only simple cognitive operations like detection of facial expressions of emotion, but also more complex operations like arithmetical calculations done mentally. The article concludes that further research is needed regarding the consequences of sudden and unexpected withdrawal of stimuli that induce and uphold various emotions. Keywords: Social influence, compliance, fear-then-relief, mindlessness, emotional seesaw
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... Whenever a sudden change in the emotional dynamic occurs -negative to positive or vice versa -an increase in compliant behavior is observed ( � Dolinski & Nawrat , �1998� ). Dolinski (2001) defines this emotional seesaw phenomenon (ESP) as a situation in which a person experiences a certain emotion, where the external stimulus evoking the emotion suddenly disappears. Experiments yielded increases in compliance (e.g., Dolinski & Nawrat, 1998), but impaired cognitive functioning (Dolinski, Ciszek, Godlewski, & Zawadzki, 2002). ...
... compliance was decreased when a mindfulness-inducing factor was introduced between ESP and plea (Dolinski et al., 2002;Dolinski & Nawrat, 1998;Kaczmarek & Steffens, 2017). Further, Dolinski and colleagues were able to reject several interpretations as underlying mechanisms of the ESP: it is not based on specific emotions (Dolinski, 2001) nor the excitation-transfer effect (Dolinski & Nawrat, 1998). Alternatively, Dolinski focuses on the affective shift claiming that a sudden withdrawal of the sources of one's emotion may encourage people to think about what has happened, resulting in a shortage of cognitive resources. ...
... Second, we empirically establish the link between cognitive load and compliance. We assume that compliance after an ESP results from cognitive busyness provoked by an expectancy violation (see Dolinski, 2001). More precisely, we expect that expectancy violation provokes an inconsistency-resolution process preventing conscious attention to external stimuli. ...
Article
The emotional seesaw phenomenon (ESP) is a social-influence technique in which a person experiences a certain emotion, where the external stimulus that evoked the emotion suddenly disappears. Large effects on compliance and impaired cognitive functioning were reported after ESPs. The present research (total N = 163) tests a generalization of this phenomenon: whether mere cognitive busyness leads to similar effects by provoking an inner focus. Two experiments closely modeled after previous ESP experiments supported this reasoning: a simple expectancy violation (Experiment 1) and cognitive load (Experiment 2) caused a comparable pattern of results as the ESP. Experiment 3 demonstrated that also the ESP fostered an inner focus and consequently compliant behavior. We discuss mechanisms underlying social-influence techniques.
... As evidenced above, with numerous replications of the frst experiment, and with new elements being incorporated into the procedure and changes being made both in terms of the method of emotional seesaw manipulation as well as the method used to measure compliance, the authors became convinced that they had discovered a new social infuence technique that had not yet been described in the psychological literature. They also demonstrated its efectiveness in further studies (e.g., Nawrat and Dolinski, 2007;Dolinska and Dolinski, 2014;Dolinski, 2001; for review see: Dolinski, 2001Dolinski, , 2016. For a number of reasons (also due to the self-fulflling prophecy efect, which we discuss in Chapter 3), both laboratory (e.g., Szczepanowski et al., 2019) and feld (e.g., Stefens, 2017, 2019) experiments conducted by other researchers seem to be particularly valuable from the perspective of documenting the psychological consequences of the state of emotional seesaw. ...
... As evidenced above, with numerous replications of the frst experiment, and with new elements being incorporated into the procedure and changes being made both in terms of the method of emotional seesaw manipulation as well as the method used to measure compliance, the authors became convinced that they had discovered a new social infuence technique that had not yet been described in the psychological literature. They also demonstrated its efectiveness in further studies (e.g., Nawrat and Dolinski, 2007;Dolinska and Dolinski, 2014;Dolinski, 2001; for review see: Dolinski, 2001Dolinski, , 2016. For a number of reasons (also due to the self-fulflling prophecy efect, which we discuss in Chapter 3), both laboratory (e.g., Szczepanowski et al., 2019) and feld (e.g., Stefens, 2017, 2019) experiments conducted by other researchers seem to be particularly valuable from the perspective of documenting the psychological consequences of the state of emotional seesaw. ...
... As evidenced above, with numerous replications of the frst experiment, and with new elements being incorporated into the procedure and changes being made both in terms of the method of emotional seesaw manipulation as well as the method used to measure compliance, the authors became convinced that they had discovered a new social infuence technique that had not yet been described in the psychological literature. They also demonstrated its efectiveness in further studies (e.g., Nawrat and Dolinski, 2007;Dolinska and Dolinski, 2014;Dolinski, 2001; for review see: Dolinski, 2001Dolinski, , 2016. For a number of reasons (also due to the self-fulflling prophecy efect, which we discuss in Chapter 3), both laboratory (e.g., Szczepanowski et al., 2019) and feld (e.g., Stefens, 2017, 2019) experiments conducted by other researchers seem to be particularly valuable from the perspective of documenting the psychological consequences of the state of emotional seesaw. ...
... As evidenced above, with numerous replications of the frst experiment, and with new elements being incorporated into the procedure and changes being made both in terms of the method of emotional seesaw manipulation as well as the method used to measure compliance, the authors became convinced that they had discovered a new social infuence technique that had not yet been described in the psychological literature. They also demonstrated its efectiveness in further studies (e.g., Nawrat and Dolinski, 2007;Dolinska and Dolinski, 2014;Dolinski, 2001; for review see: Dolinski, 2001Dolinski, , 2016. For a number of reasons (also due to the self-fulflling prophecy efect, which we discuss in Chapter 3), both laboratory (e.g., Szczepanowski et al., 2019) and feld (e.g., Stefens, 2017, 2019) experiments conducted by other researchers seem to be particularly valuable from the perspective of documenting the psychological consequences of the state of emotional seesaw. ...
... And it was in precisely these conditions that they agreed far more often to accede to a request to participate in quite time-consuming surveys. In other studies (Nawrat & Dolinski, 2007;Dolinski, Ciszek, Godlewski, & Zawadzki, 2002), it was demonstrated that in a condition the authors termed "emotional seesaw," the individual has limited possibilities to adequately assess the situation and exhibits clearly diminished cognitive functioning (see Dolinski, 2001 for review). ...
... And it was in precisely these conditions that they agreed far more often to accede to a request to participate in quite time-consuming surveys. In other studies (Nawrat & Dolinski, 2007;Dolinski, Ciszek, Godlewski, & Zawadzki, 2002), it was demonstrated that in a condition the authors termed "emotional seesaw," the individual has limited possibilities to adequately assess the situation and exhibits clearly diminished cognitive functioning (see Dolinski, 2001 for review). ...
... And it was in precisely these conditions that they agreed far more often to accede to a request to participate in quite time-consuming surveys. In other studies (Nawrat & Dolinski, 2007;Dolinski, Ciszek, Godlewski, & Zawadzki, 2002), it was demonstrated that in a condition the authors termed "emotional seesaw," the individual has limited possibilities to adequately assess the situation and exhibits clearly diminished cognitive functioning (see Dolinski, 2001 for review). ...
... And it was in precisely these conditions that they agreed far more often to accede to a request to participate in quite time-consuming surveys. In other studies (Nawrat & Dolinski, 2007;Dolinski, Ciszek, Godlewski, & Zawadzki, 2002), it was demonstrated that in a condition the authors termed "emotional seesaw," the individual has limited possibilities to adequately assess the situation and exhibits clearly diminished cognitive functioning (see Dolinski, 2001 for review). ...
... Temporal aspects of social influence mechanisms play an even more important role in the fear-then-relief technique (Dolinski & Nawrat, 1998), which is based on evidence that when people experience an emotion that is then removed, they are more likely to comply with a request. Surprisingly-and importantly-the technique completely ceases to be effective when the request is not delivered immediately (i.e., a few seconds after the fear has disappeared; Dolinski, 2001). Knowles and Riner (2007) in their alpha-omega approaches to persuasion claim that some social influence strategies (e.g., distraction or consuming resistance) are likely to have only a temporary effect, while some other techniques (e.g., guarantees or reframing) have a more 797075C QXXXX10.1177/1938965518797075Cornell ...
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