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ERIC Number: EJ1090765
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2016-Mar
Pages: 9
Abstractor: As Provided
ISSN: ISSN-0165-0254
Goal Disengagement in Emerging Adulthood: The Adaptive Potential of Action Crises
Brandst├Ątter, Veronika; Herrmann, Marcel
International Journal of Behavioral Development, v40 n2 p117-125 Mar 2016
In emerging adulthood, being committed to and making progress on important personal goals constitutes a source of identity and well-being. Goal striving, however, does not always go without problems. Even though highly committed to a goal, individuals may experience recurring setbacks and, consequently, increasing doubts about the goal that might culminate in an "action crisis", that is, an intra-psychic decisional conflict about whether to disengage from or to continue on their way. Action crises have been shown to lead to negative consequences on well-being and performance. Besides these negative consequences, however, an action crisis is hypothesized to have an adaptive side that is addressed in the present paper. Actively questioning the pursuit of a goal should allow for weighing up the focal goal against alternative and possibly more desirable goals. This open-minded "re"-evaluation, in the event of goal disengagement, is assumed to avoid the emergence of action crises in subsequently formed goals. As expected, in a longitudinal study over one and a half years with n = 207 freshman students, the degree of experienced action crisis prior to goal disengagement predicted the desirability and decisional certainty of the subsequently formed alternative goal. Theoretical implications of the results for research on self-regulation and identity formation in emerging adulthood are discussed.
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: Higher Education; Postsecondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Switzerland
Grant or Contract Numbers: N/A