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Emotion dynamics, mental health, and resilience: Insights across the lifespan

Insights across the lifespan
PhD ceremony:A.M. (Anne Margit) Reitsema
When:January 11, 2024
Supervisors:prof. dr. P. (Peter) de Jonge, prof. dr. M.W.G. (Marijn) van Dijk
Co-supervisor:dr. B.F. (Bertus) Jeronimus
Where:Academy building RUG
Faculty:Behavioural and Social Sciences
Emotion dynamics, mental health, and resilience: Insights across
the lifespan

Emotions play a pivotal role in most psychological phenomena, making them essential for understanding well-being and behavior. Fluctuations in emotional intensity (how strongly an individual feels an emotion) enable people to assess changes in their environment and respond to these changes, which is evolutionarily advantageous. Researchers have identified various patterns in emotional fluctuations collectively known as emotional dynamics, and these patterns can differ significantly from one individual to another. Studying these emotional dynamics provides insights into the flexibility, vulnerability, and regulatory capacity of our emotional system, thus shedding light on the interactions within the building blocks of psychological functioning.

The overarching goal of this thesis was to gain a better understanding of the role of emotional dynamics in psychological functioning across the lifespan, with a focus on mental health and resilience. The different chapters examine emotional dynamics during childhood, adolescence, and early and late adulthood. Collectively, these chapters paint a picture of how emotional experiences change or remain stable across different life stages.