Emotional ambivalence in risk behaviors: the case of occasional excessive use of alcohol

Span J Psychol. 2007 May;10(1):151-8. doi: 10.1017/s1138741600006417.


The purpose of this paper is to study the differential and complementary role played by the theory of planned behavior (TPB) variables and by participants' emotions when recalling and describing previous experiences of such risk behavior in the prediction of the intention to repeat a risk behavior in the immediate future. We chose the behavior of occasional excessive drinking, a risk behavior characterized by evoking attitudinal ambivalence and eliciting mixed emotions, joy and sadness. The results show that emotional ambivalence is not equivalent to attitudinal ambivalence (whose indexes include that of the affective component), and that this emotional information is relevant for predicting the intention to repeat the risk behavior in the near future, enhancing the prediction of the TPB model.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Alcoholic Intoxication / psychology*
  • Emotions*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Intention*
  • Internal-External Control
  • Male
  • Mental Recall
  • Motivation
  • Problem Solving
  • Psychological Theory
  • Risk-Taking*
  • Set, Psychology*
  • Students / psychology
  • Surveys and Questionnaires