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<p>Abstract:</p> <p>Self-affirmation (SA) is thought to reduce defensiveness and improve receptivity. In this study, we examined whether SA would enhance emotional receptivity and reaction to counter-attitudinal information, and how the effect would be manifested neurally. 87 participants watched political videos while being scanned by Functional Near-Infrared Spectroscopy (fNIRS) and reported emotional reactions and receptivity. Overall, there were no effects of SA on emotional reactions. There were no main effects of SA on emotional receptivity, but exploratory analyses found a significant interaction between SA and pre-SA emotional receptivity on post-SA emotional receptivity. SA increased post-SA emotional receptivity for people who were less receptive prior to the intervention (&lt;-1SD from the mean). Furthermore, individuals who were already receptive prior to SA did not show changes in their receptivity.</p>
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