Abstract Title

Trait Rumination predicts Word Use during Negative Mood Induction

Abstract

Introduction: Rumination has been identified as a major risk factor for the onset and maintenance of affective disorders. However, it remains unclear how rumination affects the onset of negative mood. In this study, we investigated how trait rumination influences linguistic processing of emotional material while inducing negative mood.

Methods: A sample of undergraduates (N=209) participated in a lab-based negative mood induction, in which they wrote about a negative personal experience while listening to sadness-inducing music (Barber, Adagio for Strings). Narratives were analyzed using Linguistic Inquiry and Word Count (Pennebaker, Booth, & Francis, 2007) to examine patterns of word use, including frequency, types of pronouns, emotion words, causal and certainty words. Participants also completed affect ratings before and after negative mood induction.

Results: High ruminators had significantly lower ratios of positive to negative words (M= 2.60, SD= 1.93) than low ruminators, after controlling for age, gender, word count, and depression symptoms, (M= 3.06, SD= 1.64), F(1, 187)= 3.91, p< .05, 95% CI [.001, 1.10], with high ruminators using significantly more negative emotion words (M= 2.70, SD= 1.78) than low ruminators (M= 2.17, SD= 1.71), F(1, 202)= 3.70, p< .05, 95% CI [-1.01, .01]. No other significant differences were found.

Conclusions: These results suggest that trait rumination is associated with linguistic processing of emotional material during negative mood induction, such that high trait ruminators use greater negative emotion words relative to positive words, as compared to low trait ruminators.

Modified Abstract

Rumination has been identified as a major risk factor in the development and maintenance of affective disorders. However, it remains unclear how rumination affects the onset of negative mood. We investigated how trait rumination influences linguistic processing of emotional material while inducing negative mood. Undergraduate participants underwent a negative mood induction, in which they wrote about a negative personal experience. Narratives were analyzed using Linguistic Inquiry and Word Count (Pennebaker, Booth, & Francis, 2007) to examine patterns of word use. High ruminators had significantly lower ratios of positive to negative words than low ruminators, with high ruminators using significantly more negative emotion words than low ruminators. These results suggest that trait rumination is associated with linguistic processing of emotional material during negative mood induction.

Research Category

Psychology

Primary Author's Major

Psychology

Mentor #1 Information

Dr Karin Coifman

Presentation Format

Poster

Start Date

March 2016

Research Area

Other Psychology | Personality and Social Contexts

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Mar 15th, 1:00 PM

Trait Rumination predicts Word Use during Negative Mood Induction

Introduction: Rumination has been identified as a major risk factor for the onset and maintenance of affective disorders. However, it remains unclear how rumination affects the onset of negative mood. In this study, we investigated how trait rumination influences linguistic processing of emotional material while inducing negative mood.

Methods: A sample of undergraduates (N=209) participated in a lab-based negative mood induction, in which they wrote about a negative personal experience while listening to sadness-inducing music (Barber, Adagio for Strings). Narratives were analyzed using Linguistic Inquiry and Word Count (Pennebaker, Booth, & Francis, 2007) to examine patterns of word use, including frequency, types of pronouns, emotion words, causal and certainty words. Participants also completed affect ratings before and after negative mood induction.

Results: High ruminators had significantly lower ratios of positive to negative words (M= 2.60, SD= 1.93) than low ruminators, after controlling for age, gender, word count, and depression symptoms, (M= 3.06, SD= 1.64), F(1, 187)= 3.91, p< .05, 95% CI [.001, 1.10], with high ruminators using significantly more negative emotion words (M= 2.70, SD= 1.78) than low ruminators (M= 2.17, SD= 1.71), F(1, 202)= 3.70, p< .05, 95% CI [-1.01, .01]. No other significant differences were found.

Conclusions: These results suggest that trait rumination is associated with linguistic processing of emotional material during negative mood induction, such that high trait ruminators use greater negative emotion words relative to positive words, as compared to low trait ruminators.