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19 Cards in this Set

  • Front
  • Back
Two categories of self-regulation failure
A. Underregulation:
B. Misregulation:
failure to exert control over oneself
exerting control in a way that fails to bring about the desired
Basic Ingredients of self-regulation failure:
Not engaging in active efforts of selfregulation
Lack of or Conflicting Standards (3 types)
1. Complete lack of standards
2. Multiple standards that are in conflict or otherwise incompatible
a. Conflicting goals lead to one becoming unable to manage oneself
b. Leads to paralysis, confusion, and dysfunctional behavioral patterns
3. False consensus effect
a. Overestimation of number of people involved in a behavior
b. Examples: cigarette smokers and gamblers
Reduction of monitoring-
Monitoring is evaluating self and action against
relevant standards
a. Loss of self-awareness; loss of monitoring of self
b. People cease to attend to what they are doing and cease to evaluate
their actions against their own personal standards
c. Behavior may reflect impulses and feeling that would normally be in
d. “Lynch mob” mentality
a. Stimuli capturing attention and generating psychological reactions,
such as impulses and desires
b. Attending to the relevant stimulus and managing attention are the
most common and most effective techniques of self-regulation
c. Best strategy may be to avoid temptation rather than resist it
Renegade Attention
a. Inability to see beyond the immediate stimulus environment
i. Transcendence facilitates self-regulation
ii. Most likely mechanism of failure would involve cognitive shifts
that reject meaningful patterns of thought in favor of attending to
immediate concrete stimuli
b. To escape from emotional distress, people may shift toward more
immediate and less meaningful styles of thinking
Transcendence Failure
... is the power of the self-regulatory mechanism
to interrupt that response (impulse) and prevent action
1. The inability to make oneself conform to the relevant standard
2. Self-stopping- involvement of both mental and physical
override and impulse, habit, or tendency
Inadequate Strength
a. Chronic weakness
i. Person is weak or lacks will power
ii. Person lacks ego control- unable to control impulses, wishes,
iii. Person is very susceptible to peer pressure
b. Temporary weakness
i. Depletion of strength
ii. Strength is a managed resource
iii. Negative affective state
c. Externally-mediated weakness
i. Impulse is extremely strong
ii. Unlimited access (shopping, internet, “all you can eat” buffet)
Three main reasons for inadequate strength
The longer someone is doing something, the more
difficult it may be to get them to stop
Psychological Inertia-
a. Difficult to interrupt a response sequence in the middle
b. Self-regulation is most effective when it overrides a response as
early as possible
c. Examples include binge eating, illicit sex
Zeigarnik effect
Engaging in active efforts of self-regulation but to do so in a way
that is nonoptimal and counterproductive; essence of misregulation is that the
subject tries to engage in self-regulation and knows what effect is wanted, but
the regulatory methods produce the wrong effect.
Assumption that what works for one problem will
work for another
a. People feel better indulging in drugs, but some drugs can narrow
attention, so the subject ends up focusing on the problem and feeling
b. When depressed individuals drink heavily, they end up feeling more
Deficiency in knowledge, especially in self-knowledge (3 types)
1.Overgeneralization 2.Exaggerated beliefs or attitudes 3. Cultural beliefs
Lapse-activated causal
patterns: an initial lapse is quickly followed by a large-scale indulgence, or the
process by which first lapse in self-regulation can “snowball” into a major
binge and spiraling distress; “rolling the snowball” is equivalent to a lapseactivated
causal pattern.
Time course and development of self-regulation failure-
1. “Just Say No” strategy has value if it works
2. Violation of “Just Say No” strategy may increase the likelihood of a
major binge because can apply an immense amount of guilt to a minor
lapse and thus may lead to further self-regulation failure
Zero tolerance beliefs
1. Zero tolerance beliefs change the meaning and significance of a
violation of abstinence
2. Initial lapse causes emotional distress
3. Initial lapse lead to pleasure, joy, or relaxation
4. Spiraling distress- A combination of underregulation and misregulation
can lead to a vicious cycle where each violations of one’s standards
brings negative affect, which makes it unpleasant to be self-aware, so the
person avoids monitoring his or her own behavior, which makes further
violations possible
Abstinence Violation Effects