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Bottled Up Emotions Might Make You More Aggressive

The researchers from the University of Texas, Austin and the University of Minnesota found that people who bottle up their emotions become more aggressive. The study can prove beneficial in reducing violence and assisting individuals in professions like military and law enforcement.

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The participants in the study were the United States Military Academy cadets, U.S. Army soldiers and various college students. Some of the participants had to suppress the emotions while watching a disgusting scene from the movie “The Meaning of Life” (1983) and “Trainspotting” (1996). A few of the were sleep deprived before the experiment. It was found that participants who suppressed their emotions had become more aggressive after watching the scene than those who were allowed to show their disgust. It was also noticed that tired participants reacted in the same way as the well-rested ones.

According to Arthur Markman, the lead author of the study, people who are forced to control themselves might become more aggressive after doing so. Individuals with pent up emotions react aggressively afterwards. For example, an employee who cannot react to an overbearing boss might yell at home. The study features in the journal Social Psychological and Personality Science.

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