How accurately can people remember how they felt in the past? Although some investigators hold that emotional memories are resistant to change, we review evidence that current emotions, appraisals, and coping efforts, as well as personality traits, are all associated with bias in recalling past emotions. Bias occurs as memories of emotional states are updated in light of subsequent experience and goals. Biased memories in turn influence future plans and emotions, and may contribute to the formation of enduring personality traits. People’s memories for emotions provide highly condensed and accessible summaries of the relevance of past experiences to current goals.
Levine, L. J., & Safer, M. A. (2002). Sources of bias in memory for emotions. Current Directions in Psychological Science, 11(5), 169-173.