Intra-individual variability and psychological flexibility: Affect and health in a National US sample

Jaime Hardy, Suzanne C. Segerstrom

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

61 Scopus citations

Abstract

Intra-individual variability (IIV) and psychological flexibility (PF) in affect both describe affective change over time (i.e., within-person variability). However, IIV and PF might differ from each other and predict different psychological and physical health outcomes. A large sample of adults (n = 793) completed two assessments of daily stress, daily affect, and health over a 10-year interval in The National Study of Daily Experiences (an 8-day daily diary portion of the Midlife Development in the United States study). IIV and PF in affect were modestly reliable within and between assessments. IIV, operationalized as total variability, predicted worse psychological and physical health concurrently and prospectively. PF, operationalized as changes in dimensionality, predicted better psychological and physical health concurrently and prospectively. Other operationalizations of PF were not consistently related to health. Within-person variability in affect could therefore be adaptive or maladaptive depending on how it was defined.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)13-21
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of Research in Personality
Volume69
DOIs
StatePublished - Aug 2017

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2016 Elsevier Inc.

Keywords

  • Health
  • Intra-individual variability
  • MIDUS
  • Negative affect
  • Positive affect
  • Psychological flexibility
  • Within-person variability

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Social Psychology
  • General Psychology

Fingerprint

Dive into the research topics of 'Intra-individual variability and psychological flexibility: Affect and health in a National US sample'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this