You are here

downside of self-esteem stability

Download pdf | Full Screen View

Date Issued:
2010
Summary:
Self-concept stability was tested in three studies to examine the relationship between stability in one's self-concept and the ability to adapt to changes in the social environment. Much of the literature on the topic of self-stability emphasizes the functional benefits of stability and the negative outcomes associated with instability. Dynamical systems theory purports however that stability in a dynamical system is indicative of a loss of complexity that limits the range of the systems behavior. Accordingly, this series of studies tests the idea that a stable self-system may have a more limited range of behaviors than unstable self-systems and this may have implications for adapting to changes in one's social environment. The overarching hypothesis is that compared to those with less stable self-views, those with stable self-views will demonstrate lower levels of flexibility of behavior in response to changing social demands. Study 1 assessed the dynamics of participants' evaluations by asking them to complete a self-descriptive recording and evaluate their self-descriptions using the mouse paradigm procedure. Participants also completed a series of questionnaires assessing personality factors and behavioral and cognitive flexibility. Study 2 expanded on the first study by adding a well-validated measure of self-esteem stability and a social conceptualization of behavioral flexibility. Study 3 tested participants' willingness to demonstrate behavioral flexibility in an actual social situation and examined the effects of stress on the relationship between stability and flexibility.
Title: The downside of self-esteem stability: does stability impede flexibility?.
37 views
5 downloads
Name(s): Wiese, Susan L.
Charles E. Schmidt College of Science
Department of Psychology
Type of Resource: text
Genre: Electronic Thesis Or Dissertation
Date Issued: 2010
Publisher: Florida Atlantic University
Physical Form: electronic
Extent: viii, 89 p. : ill.
Language(s): English
Summary: Self-concept stability was tested in three studies to examine the relationship between stability in one's self-concept and the ability to adapt to changes in the social environment. Much of the literature on the topic of self-stability emphasizes the functional benefits of stability and the negative outcomes associated with instability. Dynamical systems theory purports however that stability in a dynamical system is indicative of a loss of complexity that limits the range of the systems behavior. Accordingly, this series of studies tests the idea that a stable self-system may have a more limited range of behaviors than unstable self-systems and this may have implications for adapting to changes in one's social environment. The overarching hypothesis is that compared to those with less stable self-views, those with stable self-views will demonstrate lower levels of flexibility of behavior in response to changing social demands. Study 1 assessed the dynamics of participants' evaluations by asking them to complete a self-descriptive recording and evaluate their self-descriptions using the mouse paradigm procedure. Participants also completed a series of questionnaires assessing personality factors and behavioral and cognitive flexibility. Study 2 expanded on the first study by adding a well-validated measure of self-esteem stability and a social conceptualization of behavioral flexibility. Study 3 tested participants' willingness to demonstrate behavioral flexibility in an actual social situation and examined the effects of stress on the relationship between stability and flexibility.
Summary: Results suggest that those with more stable self-concepts demonstrate less flexibility in response to their social environment than those whose self-concepts are less stable and that stress tends to amplify this relationship. Future research is also recommended to achieve a fuller understanding of stability in the self-system and its implications for social functioning.
Identifier: 650818625 (oclc), 2683204 (digitool), FADT2683204 (IID), fau:3501 (fedora)
Note(s): by Susan L. Wiese.
Thesis (Ph.D.)--Florida Atlantic University, 2010.
Includes bibliography.
Electronic reproduction. Boca Raton, Fla., 2010. Mode of access: World Wide Web.
Subject(s): Self-esteem -- Psychological aspects
Adjustment (Psychology)
Social interaction
Self-determination
Identity (Psychology)
Persistent Link to This Record: http://purl.flvc.org/FAU/2683204
Use and Reproduction: http://rightsstatements.org/vocab/InC/1.0/
Owner Institution: FAU