Putting the “You” in “Thank You”: Examining Other-Praising Behavior as the Active Relational Ingredient in Expressed Gratitude

Sara B. Algoe, Laura E. Kurtz, Nicole M. Hilaire

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

  • 6 Citations

Abstract

Although positive emotions as a class can build interpersonal resources, recent evidence suggests a unique and direct role for gratitude. In the current research, we shine the spotlight on what happens between a grateful person and the benefactor to illuminate what can build a bridge between them. Specifically, we draw on work calling gratitude an “other-praising” emotion. In an original study and a conceptual replication that included two independent samples, couples had video-recorded conversations in which one member expressed gratitude to the other (n = 370). Expresser’s other-praising behavior was robustly positively associated with the benefactor’s postinteraction perception of expresser responsiveness, personal good feelings in general, and felt loving in particular. Several practical and theoretical alternative explanations are ruled out. By clarifying the specific behavioral and subjective psychological mechanisms through which expressed gratitude promotes relationships, this work advances affective and relationship science, two domains that cut across disciplines within psychology.

LanguageEnglish (US)
Pages658-666
Number of pages9
JournalSocial Psychological and Personality Science
Volume7
Issue number7
DOIs
StatePublished - Sep 1 2016

Fingerprint

Emotions
Psychology
Research

Keywords

  • emotion
  • expressed gratitude
  • interpersonal processes
  • observed behavior
  • perceived responsiveness
  • romantic relationships

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Social Psychology
  • Clinical Psychology

Cite this

Putting the “You” in “Thank You” : Examining Other-Praising Behavior as the Active Relational Ingredient in Expressed Gratitude. / Algoe, Sara B.; Kurtz, Laura E.; Hilaire, Nicole M.

In: Social Psychological and Personality Science, Vol. 7, No. 7, 01.09.2016, p. 658-666.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

@article{930db38a5e044f91a601c6d10655be21,
title = "Putting the “You” in “Thank You”: Examining Other-Praising Behavior as the Active Relational Ingredient in Expressed Gratitude",
abstract = "Although positive emotions as a class can build interpersonal resources, recent evidence suggests a unique and direct role for gratitude. In the current research, we shine the spotlight on what happens between a grateful person and the benefactor to illuminate what can build a bridge between them. Specifically, we draw on work calling gratitude an “other-praising” emotion. In an original study and a conceptual replication that included two independent samples, couples had video-recorded conversations in which one member expressed gratitude to the other (n = 370). Expresser’s other-praising behavior was robustly positively associated with the benefactor’s postinteraction perception of expresser responsiveness, personal good feelings in general, and felt loving in particular. Several practical and theoretical alternative explanations are ruled out. By clarifying the specific behavioral and subjective psychological mechanisms through which expressed gratitude promotes relationships, this work advances affective and relationship science, two domains that cut across disciplines within psychology.",
keywords = "emotion, expressed gratitude, interpersonal processes, observed behavior, perceived responsiveness, romantic relationships",
author = "Algoe, {Sara B.} and Kurtz, {Laura E.} and Hilaire, {Nicole M.}",
year = "2016",
month = "9",
day = "1",
doi = "10.1177/1948550616651681",
language = "English (US)",
volume = "7",
pages = "658--666",
journal = "Social Psychological and Personality Science",
issn = "1948-5506",
publisher = "Sage Periodicals Press",
number = "7",

}

TY - JOUR

T1 - Putting the “You” in “Thank You”

T2 - Social Psychological and Personality Science

AU - Algoe, Sara B.

AU - Kurtz, Laura E.

AU - Hilaire, Nicole M.

PY - 2016/9/1

Y1 - 2016/9/1

N2 - Although positive emotions as a class can build interpersonal resources, recent evidence suggests a unique and direct role for gratitude. In the current research, we shine the spotlight on what happens between a grateful person and the benefactor to illuminate what can build a bridge between them. Specifically, we draw on work calling gratitude an “other-praising” emotion. In an original study and a conceptual replication that included two independent samples, couples had video-recorded conversations in which one member expressed gratitude to the other (n = 370). Expresser’s other-praising behavior was robustly positively associated with the benefactor’s postinteraction perception of expresser responsiveness, personal good feelings in general, and felt loving in particular. Several practical and theoretical alternative explanations are ruled out. By clarifying the specific behavioral and subjective psychological mechanisms through which expressed gratitude promotes relationships, this work advances affective and relationship science, two domains that cut across disciplines within psychology.

AB - Although positive emotions as a class can build interpersonal resources, recent evidence suggests a unique and direct role for gratitude. In the current research, we shine the spotlight on what happens between a grateful person and the benefactor to illuminate what can build a bridge between them. Specifically, we draw on work calling gratitude an “other-praising” emotion. In an original study and a conceptual replication that included two independent samples, couples had video-recorded conversations in which one member expressed gratitude to the other (n = 370). Expresser’s other-praising behavior was robustly positively associated with the benefactor’s postinteraction perception of expresser responsiveness, personal good feelings in general, and felt loving in particular. Several practical and theoretical alternative explanations are ruled out. By clarifying the specific behavioral and subjective psychological mechanisms through which expressed gratitude promotes relationships, this work advances affective and relationship science, two domains that cut across disciplines within psychology.

KW - emotion

KW - expressed gratitude

KW - interpersonal processes

KW - observed behavior

KW - perceived responsiveness

KW - romantic relationships

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/record.url?scp=84982223862&partnerID=8YFLogxK

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/citedby.url?scp=84982223862&partnerID=8YFLogxK

U2 - 10.1177/1948550616651681

DO - 10.1177/1948550616651681

M3 - Article

VL - 7

SP - 658

EP - 666

JO - Social Psychological and Personality Science

JF - Social Psychological and Personality Science

SN - 1948-5506

IS - 7

ER -