Optimism, or positive outcome expectancy, correlates with better psychological and physiological adjustment, in part because of conscious behavior such as coping. However, procedural, automatic, and unconscious processes also may affect adjustment. The emotional Stroop task was used to assess the relationships between optimism and unconscious attentional bias for positively valenced, negatively valenced, neutral current concern, and neutral control stimuli. Undergraduate students (n = 48) completed personality measures at the beginning of the semester and computed the Stroop task under separate cover. Optimism was associated with a greater attentional bias for positive stimuli relative to negative stimuli. Optimism also was associated with slower skin conductance response rates during negative stimuli. Unconscious attentional biases may contribute to the better adjustment associated with optimism.
|Number of pages||10|
|Journal||Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin|
|State||Published - Oct 2001|
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Social Psychology