Momentary emotion differentiation: The derivation and validation of an index to study within-person fluctuations in emotion differentiation

Yasemin Erbas*, Elise K. Kalokerinos, Peter Kuppens, Sjoerd van Halem, Eva Ceulemans

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

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Abstract

Emotion differentiation refers to the tendency to label emotions in a granular way. While differentiation is an important individual difference in the context of psychological well-being, it is unknown how it fluctuates within individuals. Such a within-person measure is important, since it would allow the study of how changes in differentiation predict subsequent levels of other variables of interest. Here, we present a framework to study emotion differentiation at the within-person level by introducing a momentary emotion differentiation index. This index is directly derived from the classical emotion differentiation index, the intraclass correlation. We first give a theoretical derivation of this index. Next, using data from two experience sampling studies, we show how this new momentary index is related to other momentary indicators of well-being, and take the first steps in building its nomological network. A better understanding of within-person fluctuations in emotion differentiation will allow us to identify the causes and consequences of these fluctuations, and search for ways to teach individuals to increase their level of emotion differentiation.
Original languageEnglish
Number of pages17
JournalAssessment
DOIs
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 2022

Keywords

  • emotion
  • emotion differentiation
  • momentary measure
  • well-being
  • within-person fluctuations

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