Journal of Happiness Studies

, Volume 20, Issue 6, pp 1807–1824 | Cite as

Regulatory Focus Profiles Among Chinese Pre-adolescents and Adolescents and Their Relationship to Personality and Psychological Outcomes

  • Hongrui Liu
  • Meiling YaoEmail author
Research Paper


Although regulatory focus has been found to be associated with various variables (e.g., personality, self-esteem, and life satisfaction), relatively little is known about how promotion focus and prevention focus, two forms of regulatory focus, operate within the individual and how combinations of these two foci work. In this research types of regulatory focus profiles as well as their associations with personality predictors and psychological consequences among Chinese preadolescents and adolescents were explored. Latent profile analyses identified four distinct regulatory focus profiles: high regulatory focus (18.7–41%), moderate regulatory focus (41.9–65%), low regulatory focus (4.3–10.3%), and primarily promotion-oriented (3.3–12.3%). Conscientiousness, openness, and neuroticism were consistently significant predictors of these profiles with (a) high conscientiousness and openness increasing probabilities of primarily promotion-oriented and high regulatory focus profiles, and (b) high neuroticism increasing the probability of a high regulatory focus profile. Multiple comparisons of the four profiles revealed differences in psychological outcomes; primarily promotion-oriented preadolescents and adolescents demonstrated the most adaptive pattern with the highest self-esteem, the lowest loneliness, and the highest life satisfaction. Moreover, the regulatory focus profile remained the significant predictor of life satisfaction even after controlling for the Big Five personality traits. Limitations and implications are also discussed.


Regulatory focus Personality Self-esteem Loneliness Life satisfaction Latent profile analysis 



This research was supported by the MOE Project of Key Research Institute of Humanities and Social Sciences at Universities (Grant No. 15JJD190002).


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Copyright information

© Springer Nature B.V. 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Beijing Key Lab of Applied Experimental Psychology, Faculty of PsychologyBeijing Normal UniversityBeijingChina

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