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Perfectionism, personality, and future-directed thinking: Further insights from revised Reinforcement Sensitivity Theory

Stoeber, J. & Corr, P. J. (2017). Perfectionism, personality, and future-directed thinking: Further insights from revised Reinforcement Sensitivity Theory. Personality and Individual Differences, 105, pp. 78-83. doi: 10.1016/j.paid.2016.09.041


In a recent study, Stoeber and Corr (2015) examined how three forms of perfectionism (self-oriented, other-oriented, socially prescribed) predicted participants' affective experiences in the past two weeks, and found that revised Reinforcement Sensitivity Theory (rRST) components explained the relations between perfectionism and affective experiences. As an extension, this study investigated whether rRST components—capturing individual differences in the Behavioral Approach System (BAS), Behavioral Inhibition System (BIS), Fight-Flight-Freeze System (FFFS), and defensive fight—also explained the relations between perfectionism and future-directed thinking. 343 university students completed measures of perfectionism, rRST, and positive and negative expectations for the next two weeks. Mediation analyses showed that all BAS components (reward interest, goal-drive persistence, reward reactivity, impulsivity) and the BIS, but not the FFFS and defensive fight, explained how the different forms of perfectionism predicted future-directed expectations. The findings suggest that the BAS and BIS components of rRST, which reflect fundamental emotion-motivational systems of personality, play a role not only in the relations of perfectionism and past affective experiences, but also in those of perfectionism and future-directed thinking.

Publication Type: Article
Additional Information: © 2017, Elsevier. Licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International
Publisher Keywords: Perfectionism; Revised Reinforcement Sensitivity Theory; Future-directed thinking; Positive and negative expectations; Optimism; Pessimism; Hopelessness
Subjects: B Philosophy. Psychology. Religion > BF Psychology
Departments: School of Health & Psychological Sciences > Psychology
SWORD Depositor:
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