Why Do You Make Us Feel Good? (or Bad)
Research has been able to show that people consistently make others feel a certain way, for example happy or stressed. Psychologists have named this affective presence.
While affective presence has been identified little detail is known about exactly how it works and in what situations.
But new research aimed to examine how affective presence would influence romantic interest in in people, specifically the study aimed to consider:
(i) whether affective presence influences others’ romantic interest in a person
(ii) what types of people have positive and negative affective presence
To help the researchers understand this affect they recruited 20 men and 20 women and asked them to complete several questionnaires before attending a speed-dating event.
The researchers considered measures such as emotional regulation, attachment style, responsiveness and romantic interest.
At the end of the study the participants completed a end-of-event questionnaire. Once the researchers had collated all of the data they found several things:
Firstly, building on prior work on emotion and attraction, our findings suggest that affective presence is an important predictor of romantic interest.
The data showed that people with the greatest positive affective presence (those who appeared happier and more positive) were more likely to get a second date.
Positive emotion was seen as an important social function for promoting romantic attraction.
The study also found that people with emotional skill and dispositions to improve their own emotions and understand others emotions were more likely to make others feel positive emotions.
So from this study it appears that positive affect is a significant factor in finding a romantic partner.