Positive urgency is related to difficulty inhibiting prepotent responses

Emotion. 2016 Aug;16(5):750-9. doi: 10.1037/emo0000182. Epub 2016 Apr 11.


Positive urgency, the tendency to respond impulsively to positive affective states, has been linked to many psychopathologies, but little is known about mechanisms underpinning this form of impulsivity. We examined whether the Positive Urgency Measure (PUM) related to higher scores on performance-based measures of impulsivity and cognitive control that were administered after a positive mood induction. Undergraduates (n = 112) completed the self-report PUM, several positive mood inductions, and behavioral measures of impulsivity and cognitive control. PUM scores were significantly related to poor performance on the antisaccade task, a measure of prepotent response inhibition, but not to other performance measures. Together with existing literature, findings implicate deficits in response inhibition as one mechanism involved in emotion-related impulsivity. (PsycINFO Database Record

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Emotions / physiology*
  • Executive Function / physiology*
  • Humans
  • Impulsive Behavior / physiology*
  • Inhibition, Psychological*
  • Young Adult