ERIC Number: ED371259
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 1993-Aug
Reference Count: N/A
Perfectionism in an Interpersonal Context.
Alden, Lynn E.; Bieling, Peter M.
Numerous studies have suggested that depression and social anxiety are associated with perfectionism. The present study examines how self-oriented perfectionism and socially-prescribed perfectionism influence cognitive reactions to an interpersonal interaction. Undergraduate women (n=90) completed the Multidimensional Perfectionism Scale, the Beck Depression Inventory (BDI), and the Social Avoidance and Distress Scale (SAD) as part of a preassessment battery. Self-regulation theorists posit three cognitive processes which guide behavior: (1) standard-setting; (2) self-monitoring; and (3) self-evaluation. Research indicates that neither depressed nor socially anxious individuals establish higher standards for themselves than do control subjects. This suggests that standard-setting alone is unlikely to explain the link between perfectionism and interpersonal problems. But a person's own judgment of his or her abilities and the extent to which that person self-monitors and evaluates performance are also significant factors. Interpersonal problems may arise because the perfectionist doubts his or her ability to meet personal standards or others' standards. Additionally, perfectionism might lead to more frequent self-monitoring, which may disrupt social behavior. Socially-prescribed and self-oriented perfectionism appear to operate through different cognitive processes. This study suggested that socially-prescribed perfectionism may be particularly influential in interpersonal situations because it increases self-focused attention and appraisal. Self-appraisal in turn interacts with factors such as one's perceptions of one's social abilities to influence social behavior. (MSF)
Publication Type: Speeches/Meeting Papers; Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A