عزت نفس و کمال گرایی در ورزشکاران نخبه: اثرات آن بر اضطراب رقابتی و اعتماد به نفس
|کد مقاله||سال انتشار||مقاله انگلیسی||ترجمه فارسی||تعداد کلمات|
|32589||2002||11 صفحه PDF||سفارش دهید||4930 کلمه|
Publisher : Elsevier - Science Direct (الزویر - ساینس دایرکت)
Journal : Personality and Individual Differences, Volume 32, Issue 5, 5 April 2002, Pages 865–875
The setting of high standards is an integral part of elite sports, and often beneficial for the athlete's performance. However, individuals who are characterized by frequent cognitions about the attainment of ideal, perfectionistic standards, have been shown to be likely to experience heightened levels of anxiety, due to discrepancies between ideal and current self/situation. This could of course be detrimental to their sport performance. The aim of the study was to investigate the relationship between different patterns of perfectionistic dimensions and sport-related competitive anxiety and self-confidence, for elite athletes with different self-esteem strategies. The results revealed that the relation between self-esteem and perfectionism differs depending on which dimensions of self-esteem and perfectionism that are being considered. Athletes with a high self-esteem based on a respect and love for themselves had more positive patterns of perfectionism, whereas athletes who have a self-esteem that is dependent on competence aspects showed a more negative perfectionism. Further, negative patterns of perfectionism were in the present study related to higher levels of cognitive anxiety and lower levels of self-confidence. Hence, it seems that sport related anxiety is positively associated to certain patterns of perfectionism, patterns that are more common in individuals with specific self-esteem strategies.
Emotion related research in the sport domain has indicated that both cognitive and somatic anxiety may have differential effects on sport performance (Martens et al., 1990 and Turner & Raglin, 1996). An important area of research therefore relates to factors that may influence precompetition anxiety. Previous empirical findings have for example shown that personal goals and standards, and interpersonal comparison and winning, are significant predictors of cognitive anxiety and self-confidence (Jones et al., 1991 and Lane et al., 1995). It has also been suggested that feelings of worry, anxiety, and depression, are likely to be experienced when there is a considerable discrepancy between desired goals or future plans, and the current self and situation (Borkovec et al., 1986 and Flett et al., 1998). Based on the aforementioned, it seems plausible, as has also been suggested (e.g. Flett et al.), that especially individuals who are characterized by frequent cognitions about the attainment of ideal, perfectionistic standards, are more likely to experience negative emotions and heightened levels of anxiety and depression symptomatology, due to the existing discrepancy between ideal and current self/situation. This could of course be detrimental to sport performance, and findings indicate that anxious individuals are particularly likely to experience thoughts that interfere with goal-directed performances (e.g. Blankstein, Toner, & Flett, 1989). A certain degree of perfectionistic thoughts among elite athletes are not uncommon; in fact, most elite athletes are probably striving towards perfection. They frequently attest to the idea that there must exist a perfect performance in their sport, whether it is a perfect hit, throw, run, or jump. The common coaching instruction that “practice makes perfect” conveys the widespread belief that given enough practice, athletes may eventually achieve the perfect performance. It has even been suggested that the desire for perfection is essential, and may in time lead to championship performance (Ellis, 1982). Hence, setting high standards is an integral part of elite sports, and thereby often beneficial for the athlete's performance, but when nothing but the perfect performance is perceived to be good enough, these originally positive expectations may instead lead to the development of a negative self-concept, and a fear-of-failure syndrome (e.g. Williams & Leffingwell, 1996). Furthermore, it has been shown that individuals who are categorized as perfectionistic have a tendency to engage in excessive cognitive rumination about the need to attain perfection. They also tend to be overly concerned about mistakes, to have an exceedingly difficult time forgetting errors, and to have serious doubts about the quality of her/his actions (e.g. Frost, Marten, Lahart, & Rosenblate, 1990). The study of perfectionism and related constructs has resulted in the suggestion that perfectionism must be viewed as a multidimensional concept. It includes both negative dimensions (such as concern over mistakes, doubts about actions, and fear of failure) and positive dimensions (high personal standards, positive achievement strivings, followed by a sense of satisfaction and enhanced self-esteem); see, for example, Frost et al., 1990, Hamachek, 1978, Stumpf & Parker, 2000 and Terry-Short et al., 1995. It seems plausible that the study of healthy, positive perfectionism, as well as neurotic, negative perfectionism, among elite athletes could increase our understanding of the psychological dimensions of sport performance and shed light on how different anxiety patterns develop. One of the few studies on perfectionism performed so far in the context of sport revealed that athletes who scored high in concern over mistakes, also reported more anxiety and negative thinking before competition, less self-confidence in sports, greater difficulty in concentrating, as well as negative reactions to mistakes. Athletes with a higher level of doubts about actions exhibited lower self-confidence in athletic contexts, and reported more images of mistakes and worry about audience reactions (Frost & Henderson, 1991). In a study on perfectionism and performance anxiety among musicians, it was shown that a certain pattern of perfectionism (high concern over mistakes, high doubts about actions, and low personal standards) together with low self-esteem correlated with performance anxiety (Sinden, 1999). Some researchers propose a mediation model where self-esteem is considered an important mediator between perfectionism and mental health (Blatt, 1995, Preusser et al., 1994 and Rice et al., 1998). This model is based on results indicating that aspects of maladaptive perfectionism are associated with lower self-esteem and higher depression, leading to the conclusion that maladaptive perfectionists perhaps only experience depression when they also experience chronic feelings of low self-worth and inadequacy (Rice et al.). But this indicates, as Rice et al. argue, that also maladaptive perfectionists could have high self-esteem. A suggestion that somewhat contradicts the ideas of perfectionism as either an antecedent or a consequence of self-esteem (Adler, 1956, Hollander, 1965, Horney, 1950 and Sorotzkin, 1985). Further, the finding that adaptive perfectionism was not directly, or indirectly through self-esteem, associated with depression, led Rice and colleagues to the suggestion that a positive association between adaptive perfectionism and self-esteem only occurs, if at all, in performance or achievement contexts. These somewhat theoretically incongruent findings may, however, to some extent be explained by the method used for measuring self-esteem. Firstly, the most common measures of self-esteem consist of items in which the respondent is asked very directly about her/his evaluation of her/himself (cf. Johnson, 1997) but, more importantly in non-clinical settings, the self-esteem scales most often employed consider an individual's global sense of self-worth, which often reflects not only a general sense of self-worth, but also self-confidence and competence aspects. However, it has been suggested that more situation-related concepts of the self, such as self-confidence, should be kept distinct from self-esteem, and that self-esteem is constituted of two different components. One component reflecting the individual's disposition to strive for success and competence for attaining self-worth, and another that is not related to perceived skills, competencies or other's appraisals but to the individual's basic self-acceptance (Johnson, 1997 and Johnson, 1998). Although self-esteem based on the feeling of being competent, to perform well, and to be appreciated by others, perhaps is more readily associated with certain dimensions of perfectionism, another dimension based on the individual's basic self-acceptance might be related to perfectionism as well. So in order to understand the association between self-esteem and both adaptive and maladaptive perfectionism, a second dimension of self-esteem must probably be considered. Consequently, recent research suggests that two dimensions of self-esteem exist with different origins, subsequently generating different self-attitudes, one dimension being a more static one, and defined as a more fundamental self-acceptance, love and appreciation for oneself, and referred to as basic self-esteem. The second dimension captures an individual's need to be appreciated and approved by others, to feel competent and in control, and to exert influence over other people (Forsman & Johnson, 1996 and Johnson, 1997). This dimension is referred to as earning self-esteem, and can be regarded as reflecting self-esteem more of a state character (e.g. Heatherton & Polivy, 1991), being more temporary and sensitive to situational factors, and a process by which an individual can earn self-esteem conditionally. It is further suggested that these two dimensions are distinct, asymmetrical and hierarchical phenomena. This in turn suggests that the function of competence for acquiring self-esteem is dependent on the degree of basic self-esteem, and that individuals can be categorized as having one of four different self-esteem strategies (Forsman & Johnson, 1996, Johnson, 1997 and Johnson & Forsman, 1995). Given that these four groups differ in their degree of general self-esteem, need of achievement, and level of fear of failure and test anxiety (Forsman & Johnson, 1996 and Johnson & Forsman, 1995), it is not improbable that these different self-esteem strategies in association with different patterns of perfectionism result in various anxiety patterns and self-confidence levels. Based on the aforementioned, the aim of the present study was to investigate the relation of different patterns of perfectionistic dimensions to sport-related competitive anxiety and self-confidence, for elite athletes with varying degrees of basic and earning self-esteem. The dimensions “Concern over Mistakes” and “Doubt about Action” have shown to have stronger associations with depression, anxiety, stress symptoms, and low self-esteem, than other dimensions of perfectionism (e.g. Cheng et al., 1999 and Frost & Henderson, 1991). It was therefore expected that especially these two dimensions would have an important role in contributing to competitive anxiety and self-confidence. Although the study on perfectionism in female athletes by Frost and Henderson revealed several associations between specific dimensions of perfectionism and reactions to athletic competition, the results warrant further research on how certain perfectionistic patterns, such as scoring relatively high or low on “Personal Standards” in combination with high or low levels on “Concern about mistakes” and “Doubts about Actions”, are related to competitive anxiety and self-confidence. Also, the inventory employed to measure anxiety prior to athletic competition in the study by Frost and Henderson, is a measure of trait anxiety, as well as a measure that combines cognitive and somatic aspects of anxiety. In order to increase our understanding of the association between perfectionism and anxiety in sport, it could be beneficial to use a measure of state anxiety, which is believed to significantly influence the quality of the athletic experience (Martens, Burton, Vealey, Bump, & Smith, 1990). To distinguish between cognitive and somatic anxiety could also be helpful since it has been shown that these have different antecedents, and that performance expectations held before evaluation are more highly correlated with cognitive than somatic state anxiety (e.g. Alexander & Krane, 1996, Liebert & Morris, 1967, Morris et al., 1977 and Morris & Liebert, 1970). Predicted results were that low basic self-esteem, especially in combination with high earning self-esteem, would be associated with more negative patterns of perfectionism. It was also expected that individuals with more negative patterns of perfectionism would report lower sport-related self-confidence and higher competitive anxiety. In particular cognitive anxiety was expected to be higher for individuals with negative perfectionism because of the tendency of neurotic perfectionists to ruminate about the inability to reach perfectionistic standards, and because cognitive anxiety is thought to emanate, as suggested by Martens, Burton et al. (1990), from evaluative cues, negative feedback, and negative performance expectations.