A multi-country test of brief reappraisal interventions on emotions during the COVID-19 pandemic

Ke Wang, Amit Goldenberg, Charles A. Dorison, Jeremy K. Miller*, Andero Uusberg, Jennifer S. Lerner, James J. Gross, Bamikole Bamikole Agesin, Marcia Bernardo, Olatz Campos, Luis Eudave, Karolina Grzech, Daphna Hausman Ozery, Emily A. Jackson, Elkin Oswaldo Luis Garcia, Shira Meir Drexler, Anita Penic Jurkovic, Kafeel Rana, John Paul Wilson, Maria AntoniadiKermeka Desai, Zoi Gialitaki, Elizaveta Kushnir, Khaoula Nadif, Olalla Nino Bravo, Rafia Nauman, Marlies Oosterlinck, Myrto Pantazi, Natalia Pilecka, Anna Szabelska, I. M. M. van Steenkiste, Katarzyna Filip, Andreea Ioana Bozdoc, Gabriela Mariana Marcu, Elena Agadullina, Matus Adamkovic, Marta Roczniewska, Cecilia Reyna, Angelos P. Kassianos, Minja Westerlund, Lina Ahlgren, Sara Pontinen, Gabriel Agboola Adetula, Pinar Dursun, Kevin van Schie, Rima-Maria Rahal, Karlijn Hoyer, Bastian Jaeger, Dongning Ren, Hans Ijzerman

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

Abstract

The COVID-19 pandemic has increased negative emotions and decreased positive emotions globally. Left unchecked, these emotional changes might have a wide array of adverse impacts. To reduce negative emotions and increase positive emotions, we tested the effectiveness of reappraisal, an emotion-regulation strategy that modifies how one thinks about a situation. Participants from 87 countries and regions (n = 21,644) were randomly assigned to one of two brief reappraisal interventions (reconstrual or repurposing) or one of two control conditions (active or passive). Results revealed that both reappraisal interventions (vesus both control conditions) consistently reduced negative emotions and increased positive emotions across different measures. Reconstrual and repurposing interventions had similar effects. Importantly, planned exploratory analyses indicated that reappraisal interventions did not reduce intentions to practice preventive health behaviours. The findings demonstrate the viability of creating scalable, low-cost interventions for use around the world. Protocol registration: The stage 1 protocol for this Registered Report was accepted in principle on 12 May 2020. 

The protocol, as accepted by the journal, can be found at https://doi.org/10.6084/m9.figshare.c.4878591.v1

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1089-1110
JournalNature Human Behaviour
Volume5
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2021

Keywords

  • REGULATION STRATEGIES
  • COGNITIVE REAPPRAISAL
  • DIVERGENT ASSOCIATIONS
  • POSITIVE EMOTIONS
  • NEGATIVE AFFECT
  • R PACKAGE
  • ANXIETY
  • STRESS
  • METAANALYSIS
  • RESILIENCE

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