For decades, social psychological theories have posited that the automatic processes captured by implicit measures have implications for social outcomes. Yet few studies have demonstrated any long-term implications of automatic processes, and some scholars have begun to question the relevance and even the validity of these theories. At baseline of our longitudinal study, 135 newlywed couples (270 individuals) completed an explicit measure of their conscious attitudes toward their relationship and an implicit measure of their automatic attitudes toward their partner. They then reported their marital satisfaction every 6 months for the next 4 years. We found no correlation between spouses’ automatic and conscious attitudes, which suggests that spouses were unaware of their automatic attitudes. Further, spouses’ automatic attitudes, not their conscious ones, predicted changes in their marital satisfaction, such that spouses with more positive automatic attitudes were less likely to experience declines in marital satisfaction over time.
几十年来，社会心理学理论已经断定通过内隐测试发现的无意识的大脑处理（automatic processes）影响着人与人之间的关系。 然而只有很少的研究说明了任何的关于无意识大脑处理 (automatic processes) 的长期影响，但是有学者已经开始质疑这些理论的相关性和有效性。在我们的纵向研究的最开始，135对新婚夫妇（270个人）完成了一个用来测试他们对他们婚姻关系的有意识态度的外显测试，以及一个用来测试他们对于他们另一半的无意识态度的内隐测试。 然后他们在之后4年每半年报告一次他们的婚姻满意度。 我们发现配偶的无意识和有意识的态度是不相关的， 也就是说配偶对于他们的无意识态度是不自觉的。 另外，配偶的无意识态度，而不是他们的有意识的态度，决定了他们婚姻满意度的变化，比如说拥有更积极的无意识态度的配偶更不容易体验到婚姻满意度随时间的下降。