Anger, anxiety, and feelings of delusional threat as predictors of aggressive attitudes: An experimental mood induction study in a non-clinical sample

A.F. Nederlof*, P.E.H.M. Muris, J.E. Hovens

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review


In the present study the influence of angry and anxious mood states and various types of psychotic-like experiences on state aggressive behavior was examined in a non-clinical student sample. Participants (N = 120) were asked to fill out several questionnaires on psychotic-like experiences, emotions, and behaviors. Then, a combined mood induction procedure with guided imagery and mood congruent music was started to bring participants into an anxious, angry, or neutral mood. After the mood induction, an aggression word-stem completion task was presented. Results indicated that feelings of persecution were significantly linked to an aggressive attitude, whereas positive symptoms in general, hallucinatory behavior, and social reference ideas were not. Further, it was found that persons with an angry or anxious mood state also displayed a more aggressive attitude than persons who were in a neutral mood. These findings yield evidence for the role of persecutory thoughts, anger, and anxiety in triggering aggressive feelings in non-clinical populations.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)25-30
JournalPersonality and Individual Differences
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2014

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