Document Type

Article

Journal/Book Title/Conference

Journal of Psychopathology and Behavioral Assessment

Publisher

Springer Link

Publication Date

2016

DOI

doi:10.1007/s10862-016-9583-5

Abstract

This study sought to examine the relationship of implicit emotional judgments with experiential avoidance (EA) and social anxiety. A sample of 61 college students completed the Emotional Judgment – Implicit Relational Assessment Procedure (EJ-IRAP) as well as a public speaking challenge. Implicit judgments were related to greater self-reported EA, anxiety sensitivity, emotional judgments and social anxiety as well as lower performance ratings and willingness in the public speaking challenge. Effects differed by trial type with “Anxiety is bad” biases related to greater EA/anxiety, while “calm is bad” biases related to lower EA/anxiety (“Good” biases were generally unrelated to outcomes). Implicit emotional judgments moderated the relationship of heart rate during the speech with speech time and willingness, such that increases in heart rate were only related to lower speech time and willingness among those high in implicit judgments. Implicit judgments predicted social anxiety above and beyond self-report EA measures. Implicit emotional judgments appear to have a functional role in EA and anxiety that warrants further research.

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