Blue Monday, Yellow Friday? Investigating work anticipation as an explanatory mechanism and boundary conditions of weekly affect trajectories

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Abstract

Affective well-being of employees is a key outcome in the occupational health literature. Yet, researchers of emotions and affect have long called for a better understanding of the dynamic nature of such experiences. Directly addressing this call, we have built on temporal schema theories and the notion of temporal depth to develop and test the anticipation of work account as a theoretical explanation of systematic weekly change patterns in positive and negative affect. Using a 7-day experience-sampling design and latent growth curve modeling, we hypothesized and found that anticipation of work linearly decreased over the course of the workweek, so did negative affect. Supporting our hypothesis that change patterns in work anticipation drive change patterns in evening affect, the linear change trajectory of anticipation was significantly related to change trajectories in positive and negative affect. Furthermore, we identified the structure of the workweek and chronic workload as boundary conditions that interact in shaping weekly change patterns in anticipation. Specifically, patterns of decreasing anticipation were most pronounced for employees with a regular Monday-Friday workweek and high chronic levels of workload, while they were weakest for employees with a regular workweek but low levels of chronic workload. Taken together, our results highlight the role of work itself and working conditions in dynamic aspects of affect. They yield theoretical and practical implications for the study of affect and its work-related experiential and behavioral consequences.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)359-376
Number of pages18
JournalJournal of Occupational Health Psychology
Volume27
Issue number4
Early online date19 May 2022
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Aug 2022

Keywords

  • affect
  • entrainment
  • weekly change trajectories
  • anticipation
  • latent growth curve modeling
  • OF-THE-ART
  • PSYCHOLOGICAL DETACHMENT
  • INDIVIDUAL-DIFFERENCES
  • LONGITUDINAL RESEARCH
  • DAILY FLUCTUATIONS
  • MOOD
  • TIME
  • MINDFULNESS
  • RECOVERY
  • STRESS

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