Greater increases in negative affect and greater decreases in positive affect on days stressors occur portend poorer mental and physical health years later. Although personality traits influence stressorrelated affect, only neuroticism and extraversion among the Big Five personality traits have been examined in any detail. Moreover, personality traits may shape how people appraise daily stressors, yet few studies have examined how stressor-related appraisals may account for associations between personality and stressor-related affect. Two studies used participants (N = 2,022; age range: 30-84) from the National Study of Daily Experiences II to examine the associations between Big Five personality traits and stressor-related affect and how appraisals may account for these relationships. Results from Study 1 indicate that higher levels of extraversion, conscientiousness, and openness to experience and lower levels of neuroticism are related to less stressor-related negative affect. Only agreeableness was associated with stressor-related positive affect, such that higher levels were related to greater decreases in positive affect on days stressors occur. The second study found that stressor-related appraisals partially accounted for the significant associations between stressor-related negative affect and personality. Implications for these findings in relation to how personality may influence physical and emotional health are discussed.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Social Psychology
- Sociology and Political Science