Lecture 9: The social self
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For self-serving bias in self-esteem, attributional distortions that protect/enhance self esteem are that...
- We take credit for success and blame others for failure.
- We see ourselves as better than the average person.
- False conensus - tendency to see one's own opinions and undesirable behaviours as more typical. E.g. smoking, speeding.
- False uniqueness - tendency to underestimate the commonality of desirable behaviours. E.g. musical ability.
"Dark side" of self-esteem (Heatherington & Vohs, 2000)
Those with high self esteem with bad feedback makes that person far more obnoxious and intolerable.
Sociometer (Leary, 1998)
- Self-esteem is an indicator of inclusory status.
- Makes us notice and we feel bad if we lose social connections.
Overall self-evaluation of self-worth.
We are motivated to make self-enhancing attributions to failure, which increases self-esteem.
Why are we poor at predicting our future feelings?
We underestimate the power of the psychological immune system to facilitate recovery from trauma.
Affective forecasting is...
- When we predict our feelings
- Impact bias: overestimating the enduring impact of emotion-causing events.
Kruger & Dunning (1999)
- 45 students rated the funniness of jokes.
- Rated the ability to recognise what was funny compared to the average student.
- The perceived ability is generally around the same mark. Therefore, those were are not as good view themselves better. Those who are better, rate themselves lower.
"I'm a lovable person" Study (Wood et al., 2009)
- Subjects repeated the quote 16 times.
- Study showed that those who repeated, reported low self-esteem and felt worse.
In relation to self esteem, William James formulated that self esteem is...
your successes divided by your pretensions.
The six ways in which the social self develops:
1. Biological factors
: inherited personality
2. The roles we play
: birth order, student, employee...
- 3. Social identity: group you belong to
- - Out-group members are similar to one another
- - Favour one's in-group
- - Random allocation to groups is sufficient
4. Social comparisons
: evaluation with others in wealth, intelligence, etc.
5. Other people's judgements
: spotlight effect, looking-glass self
The spotlight effect and illusion of transparency illustrate the interplay between...
sense of self and social world.
The spotlight effect (Gilovich et al., 2000)
- Subjects were to wear embarassing/desirable t-shirt.
- Most subjects for both cases predicted that half would notice; however in both cases only a minute percentage will notice.
Illusion of transparency
We also think others can easily read our concealed emotions.
E.g. when lying
The spotlight effect is when..
We tend to be self conscious, and think others overly pat attention to our appearance and behaviours.
What would you like to do?
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