Putting oneself in someone's shoes: The effect of observing ostracism on physical pain, social pain, negative emotion, and self-regulation

Kai Tak POON, Yufei JIANG, Fei TENG

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

The current research examined the hypothesis that observing another person experiencing ostracism would increase physical pain, social pain, and negative emotion, as well as impair self-regulation through increased perception of rejection. It further examined whether individual differences in rejection sensitivity would moderate the mediation effects. The results showed that compared with participants who observed a control interaction, those who observed a stranger experiencing ostracism perceived higher levels of rejection likelihood, experienced higher levels of physical and social pain, reported higher levels of negative emotion, and had lower levels of self-regulation. In addition, perceived rejection likelihood significantly mediated the effects of observing ostracism on physical pain, social pain, negative emotion, and self-regulation. Furthermore, dispositional rejection sensitivity moderated these mediation effects, such that the effects were only observed among participants with high rejection sensitivity. In sum, these findings advance our understanding of how ostracism influences observers' cognition, physiological and psychological experience, and self-regulation. They also highlight the importance of the combinative role of dispositional characteristics and situational experiences in understanding people's responses in social interactions. Copyright © 2020 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
Original languageEnglish
Article number110217
JournalPersonality and Individual Differences
Volume166
Early online dateJul 2020
DOIs
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - Jul 2020

Citation

Poon, K.-T., Jiang, Y., & Teng, F. (2020). Putting oneself in someone's shoes: The effect of observing ostracism on physical pain, social pain, negative emotion, and self-regulation. Personality and Individual Differences, 166. Retrieved from https://doi.org/10.1016/j.paid.2020.110217

Keywords

  • Ostracism
  • Rejection sensitivity
  • Perceived rejection
  • Physical pain
  • Social pain
  • Emotion
  • Self-regulation
  • PG student publication

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