I’m excited for our symposium on Psychology in Everyday Life at SESP in Seattle this week. Four excellent presenters will talk about how experience sampling can be used to inform psychological science in multiple domains. We’ll be presenting in Princessa II from 4:50-6pm on Friday 5 October.
Psychology in Everyday Life
The richness of human psychology is what attracted many of us to the field: the opportunity to study people in their natural environments of home, work, school, and beyond. Yet, many of our cherished findings are confined to one particular environment: the laboratory. Moving beyond the walls of the lab is critical for psychology to advance. Indeed, the study of psychology in everyday life has uncovered a number of new findings that could not have been anticipated using traditional lab-based methods. The talks in this symposium showcase such findings, exploring the power of experience sampling for refining our understanding of human psychology across a range of domains. Focusing on intrapersonal phenomena, Kalokerinos and Slepian outline how studying emotion regulationand information regulationin daily life can shed new light on old fields of research by revealing the ways people’s daily behaviors confound expectations based on lab research. Focusing on interpersonal phenomena, Overall and Smith discuss how experience sampling can reveal novel insights into the causes and consequences of relationship qualityand social power. Together, the talks demonstrate that certain psychological processes cannot be fully understood within the context of the lab. For psychological science to continue progressing, we must incorporate methods that allow for a deeper reach into people’s everyday lives. As this symposium shows, doing so will result in a more theoretically, empirically, and practically impactful science.
I was honoured to be named a Rising Star by the Association for Psychological Science, an award presented to outstanding psychological scientists in the earliest stages of their research careers. I was particularly proud and grateful to be named alongside my peers and friends, including my colleague at the University of Melbourne Pete Koval. This award means all the more to be able to share it with people I admire.
I will co-chair a symposium with Christopher Begeny at the upcoming Society for Personality and Social Psychology conference in San Antonio in January 2017.
What makes us healthy? This symposium showcases new frontiers in the social determinants of health. Four talks illustrate how our psychological connections to groups—social identities—have the power to both enhance and harm our health. Beginning with identity’s potential to harm health, Smart Richman shows that construing unhealthy behaviors as part of one’s ethnic identity increases unhealthy eating under stress. Branscombe shows how perceived lack of belonging in the U.S. undermines Arab Americans’ mental and physical health. Turning to identity’s power to enhance health, Begeny shows across four groups that subtle cues conveying value and acceptance shape identity in ways that promote mental health. Haslam reveals how identities can treat mental illness in one of the first longitudinal interventions of its kind. Overall, this symposium presents new ways of understanding what makes us healthy, outlining identity’s dual power to harm and to heal.
Effects of Discrimination on Health-Related Behaviors: An Identity-Based Motivational Model
Laura Smart Richman, Duke University
Where do I fit in? Arab Americans’ Identity and Health
Nyla R. Branscombe, University of Kansas
Everyday Interactions Turn Strength of “Me” into Strength of “We”
Christopher T. Begeny, University of California, Los Angeles
Unlocking the Social Cure: Groups 4 Health
S Alexander Haslam, The University of Queensland