When Being in a Positive Mood Increases Choice Deferral

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

20 Scopus citations


Consumers' choices are often accompanied by unrelated incidental moods. The positive mood caused by receiving a compliment, for example, may persist when one is choosing what service to book or which product to buy. How might being in a positive mood affect consumers' subsequent, unrelated choices? The present research demonstrates that being in a positive mood can make consumers more likely to defer choice. Four studies show that when choosing requires trade-offs between important choice attributes, being in a positive (vs. neutral) mood makes choosing more difficult and therefore increases the likelihood of deferring choice altogether. The findings further understanding of how incidental factors shape choice processes and outcomes and the role of emotions in decision making.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article numberucx121
Pages (from-to)208-225
Number of pages18
JournalJournal of Consumer Research
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jun 1 2018


  • choice
  • choice deferral
  • choice difficulty
  • positive mood
  • trade-offs

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Business and International Management
  • Anthropology
  • Arts and Humanities (miscellaneous)
  • Economics and Econometrics
  • Marketing


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