Interpersonal Affect Dynamics: It Takes Two (and Time) to Tango

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

139 Scopus citations


Everything is constantly changing. Our emotions are one of the primary ways we track, evaluate, organize, and motivate responsive action to those changes. Furthermore, emotions are inherently interpersonal. We learn what to feel from others, especially when we are children. We "catch" other peoples emotions just by being around them. We get caught in escalating response-counterresponse emotional sequences. This all takes place in time, generating complex patterns of interpersonal emotional dynamics. This review summarizes theory, empirical findings, and key challenges for future research regarding three processes that contribute to interpersonal affective dynamics: (a) Convergence of social partners emotional responses to the external world, (b) emotional reactivity of social partners to each other, and (c) interpersonal emotion regulation.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)336-341
Number of pages6
JournalEmotion Review
Issue number4
StatePublished - Oct 1 2015


  • close relationships
  • dynamics
  • interpersonal emotion regulation
  • temporal

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Social Psychology
  • Experimental and Cognitive Psychology
  • Arts and Humanities (miscellaneous)


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