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Induced nostalgia increases optimism (via social-connectedness and self-esteem) among individuals high, but not low, in trait nostalgia

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Nostalgia, a sentimental longing for the past, is not merely a past-oriented emotion, but has implications for the future. Experimentally induced nostalgia fosters optimism by increasing social-connectedness (a sense of acceptance and belongingness) and self-esteem. Do these effects depend on trait nostalgia (i.e., proneness to nostalgic engagement)? Consistent with past research, induced nostalgia fostered optimism, and this effect was mediated by social-connectedness and self-esteem. More important, these effects uniquely applied to participants who were high, but not low, on trait nostalgia. That is, induced nostalgia (vs. control) was indirectly linked to heightened optimism through social-connectedness and self-esteem, for nostalgia prone individuals. Proneness to nostalgic engagement, when coupled with momentary nostalgia, confers benefits, not only in terms of greater social-connectedness and self-esteem, but also in terms of higher optimism.

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Cheung, W.Y., Sedikides, C. and Wildschut, T. (2016) Induced nostalgia increases optimism (via social-connectedness and self-esteem) among individuals high, but not low, in trait nostalgia Personality and Individual Differences, 90, pp. 283-288. (doi:10.1016/j.paid.2015.11.028).

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Accepted/In Press date: 14 November 2015
e-pub ahead of print date: 25 November 2015
Published date: February 2016
Keywords: nostalgia, optimism, emotion, memory, self-esteem, social-connectedness
Organisations: Psychology


Local EPrints ID: 384129
ISSN: 0191-8869
PURE UUID: b8c3656d-acbd-40fc-88ef-fa47660af579

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Date deposited: 15 Dec 2015 11:33
Last modified: 17 Jul 2017 20:07

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Author: W.Y. Cheung
Author: C. Sedikides
Author: T. Wildschut

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