- Impulsive action and motivation
- Biological Psychology
- Volume | Issue number
- 84 | 3
- Pages (from-to)
- Document type
- Faculty of Social and Behavioural Sciences (FMG)
- Psychology Research Institute (PsyRes)
This paper explores the way in which emotions are causal determinants of action. It argues that emotional events, as appraised by the individual, elicit changes in motive states (called states of action readiness), which in turn may (or may not) cause action. Actions can be elicited automatically, without prior intention (called impulsive actions), or intentionally. Impulsive actions reflect the simplest and biologically most general form in which emotions can cause action, since they require no reflection, no foresight, and no planning. Impulsive actions are determined conjointly by the nature of action readiness, the affordances perceived in the eliciting event as appraised, and the individual's action repertoire. Those actions from one's repertoire are performed that both match the perceived affordances and the aim of the state of action readiness.
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