Dynamic, Not Stable: Daily Variations in Subjective Age Bias and Age Group Identification Predict Daily Well-Being in Older Workers

Bibiana M. Armenta*, Susanne Scheibe, Katherine Stroebe, Tom Postmes, Nico W. Van Yperen

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

14 Citations (Scopus)
351 Downloads (Pure)

Abstract

This work examines the hypothesis that older workers' responses to negative events at work depend, in part, on daily fluctuations of subjective age bias (SAB; how old people feel compared to their actual age) and age group identification (age GI). We tested whether SAB and age GI fluctuate over time, whether they influence attributions of negative daily work events as age-related, and thereby predict older workers' daily affect and cognitive engagement in their work. A diary study with 169 older workers (aged 50-70 years) demonstrates that there are substantial daily variations in SAB and GI. Daily fluctuations of SAB and age GI respectively predicted attributions of negative personal (e.g., forgetfulness) and social (e.g., social exclusion) work events to age. Age attributions, in turn, negatively predicted affect and daily cognitive engagement over and above event occurrence. In other words, when confronted with negative daily work events, the short-term dissociation from one's chronological age and age group (i.e., feeling younger and identifying less with other older adults) seems to benefit older workers' well-being.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)559-571
Number of pages13
JournalPsychology and Aging
Volume33
Issue number4
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Jun-2018

Keywords

  • subjective age bias
  • group identification
  • age attributions
  • negative affect
  • cognitive engagement
  • STEREOTYPE THREAT
  • PERCEIVED DISCRIMINATION
  • PERVASIVE DISCRIMINATION
  • EMOTIONAL RESPONSES
  • COMMON STEREOTYPES
  • SOCIAL-PSYCHOLOGY
  • SELF-PERCEPTIONS
  • GROUP BOUNDARIES
  • UNITED-STATES
  • HEALTH

Cite this