Emotionsregulation ist nicht in allen Karrierestadien gleich hilfreich


Dr. Marina Schall und Prof. Schütz stellen Ergebnisse ihrer Forschung auf der Tagung des Consortium of European Research on Emotion (CERE) in Glasgow vor.

Emotion Regulation Ability Predicts Experiences of Stress Early but not Later in the Careers of Professional Soldiers



Military personnel face various stressors in their professional lives such as military deployments, employments abroad, or family moves. In the present work, we examined whether emotion-regulation ability assessed with the Mayer-Salovey-Caruso Emotional Intelligence Test would help to reduce the experience of stress among German soldiers (N = 486, 93% male). Although emotion-regulation ability is associated with various well-being outcomes, a recent study suggested that the benefits of emotion regulation depend on the context in which it is used (Troy, Shallcross, & Mauss, 2013). We predicted that higher emotion-regulation ability would be associated with a lower experience of stress as a result of a greater tendency to use effective strategies (i.e., more reappraisal and less suppression; Hypothesis 1). We further predicted that whether emotion-regulation ability would reduce stress experiences would depend on the stage of soldiers’ careers because of the related challenges in their work and personal situations (Hypothesis 2). The results showed that a higher ability to regulate emotions was associated with a lower stress experience, which was partly due to the tendency to use reappraisal instead of suppression―but only among professional soldiers who were in the early stages of their careers (< 30 years old) and not among their colleagues in later career stages (≥ 30 years old). The results also showed that professional soldiers in early or later career stages differed in their stress experiences (job vs. family demands). We considered the context-dependency of the benefits of emotion regulation in interpreting these findings. Whereas in the early stages of their careers, soldiers are primarily stressed by emotionally demanding military deployments and benefit from high emotional competencies, the challenges of older professionals are less a matter of adaptation but are more likely to involve issues for which external resources are needed (e.g., combining one’s career with one’s family life). 

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