Pessimistic expectations and poorer experiences: The role of (low) extraversion in anticipated and experienced enjoyment of social interaction.

Journal Article (Journal Article)

Given research suggesting that social interactions are beneficial, it is unclear why individuals lower in extraversion engage less in social interactions. In this study, we test whether individuals lower in extraversion reap fewer hedonic rewards from social interactions and explore social psychological processes that explain their experiences. Before participants socialized, we measured extraversion, state positive affect, cognitive capacity, and expectations about the social interactions. After participants socialized with one another, we measured state positive affect and cognitive capacity again as well as fear of negative evaluation and belief in limited cognitive capacity. Participants also rated the social skillfulness of each interaction partner. We found that less extraverted individuals expect to feel worse after socializing. However, all but those extremely low in extraversion (17% of sample) actually experience an increase in positive affect after socializing. Surprisingly, those low in extraversion did not show reduced cognitive capacity after socializing. Although they are more likely to believe that cognitive capacity is limited and to be fearful of negative evaluation, these characteristics did not explain the social experience of those low in extraversion.

Full Text

Duke Authors

Cited Authors

  • Duffy, KA; Helzer, EG; Hoyle, RH; Fukukura Helzer, J; Chartrand, TL

Published Date

  • January 2018

Published In

Volume / Issue

  • 13 / 7

Start / End Page

  • e0199146 -

PubMed ID

  • 29975736

Pubmed Central ID

  • PMC6033406

Electronic International Standard Serial Number (EISSN)

  • 1932-6203

International Standard Serial Number (ISSN)

  • 1932-6203

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)

  • 10.1371/journal.pone.0199146


  • eng