For a complete list of our research papers, please see our Publications. Our lab focuses on advancing the understanding of how and why emotion regulation impacts social, psychological, and physical well-being across the life span. We take a multi-method approach to our research questions, using laboratory-based and naturalistic (e.g., experience sampling, daily diaries, longitudinal) approaches, along with assessments of self-reported experience, partner and peer reports, behavior, and psychophysiology. Please note that the sections below highlight our general research topics, but not necessarily current projects.

Socio-cultural and Situational Influences on Emotion Regulation

The sociocultural environment plays a central role in the operation of emotion processes, shaping beliefs about when and how emotions should be controlled and which emotions should be targeted for regulation. In this line of research, we focus on understanding the dynamic processes through which individuals’ emotion regulation patterns arise out of interactions with the sociocultural environment. For instance, we examine whether the form and consequences of emotion regulation vary across different social and cultural contexts (e.g., East Asian and Western).

Adult Development in Emotion Regulation

Despite the cognitive declines that occur with age, emotion processes remain largely intact or even improve later in life. In this line of research, we focus on understanding how emotion and emotion regulation develop across adulthood, including the factors underlying any changes that occur. For instance, we examine age-related shifts in emotional goals, use of specific emotion regulation strategies, and success of emotion regulation efforts. We are particularly interested in understanding how people come to chronically rely on relatively ineffective strategies (e.g., suppression). 

Consequences of Emotion Regulation for Social Functioning and Health

Emotion regulation is neither inherently adaptive nor maladaptive—the impact depends on specific goal commitments as well as the context in which regulation occurs. In this line of research, we seek to clarify the conditions under which specific emotion regulation efforts may be beneficial or harmful for personal and relational well-being. We are also interested in dyadic regulation that occurs between partners, that is, how partners influence each others’ emotions and regulation efforts.