کمال گرایی، خشم، سلامت جسمانی و مثبت عاطفی
|کد مقاله||سال انتشار||مقاله انگلیسی||ترجمه فارسی||تعداد کلمات|
|32596||2003||15 صفحه PDF||سفارش دهید||6325 کلمه|
Publisher : Elsevier - Science Direct (الزویر - ساینس دایرکت)
Journal : Personality and Individual Differences, Volume 35, Issue 7, November 2003, Pages 1585–1599
The associations between perfectionism, anger, somatic health, and positive affect were examined in 184 Swedish adults from a randomly selected population sample. Somewhat unexpectedly, trait anger was found to be associated with self-oriented perfectionism rather than with socially prescribed perfectionism. Both socially prescribed perfectionism and self-oriented perfectionism showed weak positive correlations with self-reported somatic complaints, particularly symptoms of tension and fatigue, and more clearly in women than in men, whereas other-oriented perfectionism appeared as a predictor of whether the participants were undergoing medical treatment or not. Finally, the results did not support the notion of self-oriented perfectionism representing a positive, adaptive dimension of perfectionism; on the contrary, this dimension was found to be negatively associated with positive affect.
The development of two multidimensional instruments for the measurement of perfectionism (Frost et al., 1990 and Hewitt and Flett, 1991b) has made it possible to separate aspects of perfectionism that are associated with negative affectivity, such as anxiety and depression, from those unassociated with these psychological problems. Frost et al.'s (1990) Multidimensional Perfectionism Scale (MPS-F) identified six dimensions of perfectionism—Personal Standards, Concern Over Mistakes, Doubts About Action, Organization, Parental Expectations, and Parental Criticism—of which Concern over Mistakes and Doubts about Action have been most consistently associated with anxiety and depression (Antony et al., 1998, Enns and Cox, 1999, Frost et al., 1993, Frost et al., 1990, Frost and Steketee, 1997, Juster et al., 1996, Lundh and Öst, 1996, Lynd-Stevenson and Hearne, 1999, Saboonchi and Lundh, 1997 and Saboonchi et al., 1999). Hewitt and Flett's (1991b) Multidimensional Perfectionism Scale (MPS-H), on the other hand, identifies three dimensions: Self-Oriented Perfectionism (setting high standards for oneself and judging oneself on the basis of these harsh dictates), Other-oriented Perfectionism (setting exacting standards for others and subjecting them to stringent evaluation), and Socially Prescribed Perfectionism (feeling that others place unreasonable standards on one's behaviour). Of these, Socially Prescribed Perfectionism has been most consistently associated with anxiety and depression (Alden et al., 1994, Enns and Cox, 1999, Flett et al., 1991, Flett et al., 1996, Frost et al., 1993, Hewitt and Flett, 1991a, Hewitt and Flett, 1991b, Hewitt and Flett, 1993, Mor et al., 1995, Saboonchi and Lundh, 1997 and Wyatt and Gilbert, 1998). In contrast to the substantial knowledge that has accumulated about the association between various aspects of perfectionism and anxiety and depression, little is known about how perfectionism is related to anger. Similarly, the relation between somatic health and perfectionism has not been extensively studied. And although the last years have seen an increased interest in positive aspects of perfectionism (Adkins and Parker, 1996, Frost and Steketee, 1997, Lynd-Stevenson and Hearne, 1999, Rice et al., 1998, Slade and Owens, 1998 and Terry-Short et al., 1995), there is still also a relative lack of empirical research into the possible associations between positive affect and various dimensions of perfectionism. The purpose of the present study was to investigate these associations by means of the MPS-H (Hewitt & Flett, 1991b): that is, how are anger, somatic health, and positive affect related to self-oriented, other-oriented, and socially prescribed perfectionism? 1. Perfectionism and anger The association between perfectionism and anger has seldom been made the focus of empirical research. Both Frost et al., 1990 and Hewitt and Flett, 1991b found correlations ranging from r=0.30 to r=0.35 between hostility and some aspects of perfectionism (Concern over Mistakes and Doubts about Action on the MPS-F, and Self-Oriented and Socially Prescribed Perfectionism on the MPS-H). Although hostility is conceptually related to anger, however, the two terms are not synonymous. Hewitt and Flett (1991b, Study 4) is, to our knowledge, the only study so far that has directly addressed the relation between perfectionism and anger. Since anger is typically conceptualized as a “social” emotion that arises from the perception of intentional misdeeds on the part of others, Hewitt and Flett (1991b) argued that it should primarily be associated with socially prescribed perfectionism. Although this hypothesis was supported by a moderate correlation between anger and socially prescribed perfectionism (r=0.44), they also found a weak correlation between anger and self-oriented perfectionism (r=0.20). According to most cognitive appraisal theories (e.g. Averill, 1983, Beck, 1976, Beck, 1999, Lazarus, 1991 and Ortony et al., 1988), anger is elicited if an incident is appraised as both undesirable and as being the result of another individual's intentional behaviour. In this perspective, anger is closely associated with the experience of being unfairly treated by others. A similar experience seems to be implied in the experience of high degrees of socially prescribed perfectionism, which by definition involves the perception that others place unreasonable standards on one's behaviour. From this theoretical model of anger, socially prescribed perfectionism may be expected to be associated with a predisposition to anger. Other cognitive theories of anger (e.g. Stein & Levine, 1990) do not emphasize the role of perceived mistreatment from others, but assume that anger occurs as the result of the frustration that is experienced when a desired goal cannot be attained, or a desired state cannot be maintained, even though the individual firmly believes that it can be. In this perspective, self-oriented perfectionism may also be associated with a predisposition to anger. Because self-oriented perfectionism involves setting high goals for oneself, the probability of failing to attain these goals may be higher in individuals who are high on this dimension of perfectionism, which would then tend to produce anger. On the basis of Hewitt and Flett's (1991b) results, however, it was hypothesized that the appraisal of mistreatment by others is more important than goal frustrations for the arousal of anger, and that anger would therefore correlate most clearly with socially prescribed perfectionism. 2. Perfectionism and somatic health In two early studies, somatic complaints showed weak to moderate correlations with concern over mistakes (r=0.26) and doubts about action (r=0.43) on the MPS-F ( Frost et al., 1990), and socially prescribed perfectionism (r=0.38) and self-oriented perfectionism (r=0.21) on the MPS-H ( Hewitt & Flett, 1991b). Although both these studies used student samples, Hewitt and Flett (1991b, Study 5) found similar results with the MPS-H in a sample of psychiatric patients. Similar weak correlations between somatic symptoms and socially prescribed perfectionism (and to a lesser extent, self-oriented perfectionism) have been reported in three later studies ( Dunkley and Blankstein, 2000, Martin et al., 1996 and Wyatt and Gilbert, 1998). Support for a negative association between perfectionism and somatic health was also found by Fry (1995) in a sample of female executives. Of relevance in this context are also the moderate correlations between Fears of Bodily Injury, Death and Illness [a subscale on Wolpe and Lang's (1964) Fear Survey Schedule] and concern over mistakes, doubts about action, and socially prescribed perfectionism that were found by Saboonchi and Lundh (1997) in a student sample. With regard to more specific forms of somatic complaints, associations between perfectionism and insomnia have been reported (Lundh et al., 1994 and Vincent and Walker, 2000). However, there is also evidence that points to a lack of association between perfectionism and somatic distress, at least in depression. Enns and Cox (1999), in a sample of depressed outpatients, found that whereas several dimensions of perfectionism showed medium to large correlations with the cognitive distortions factor of the Beck Depression Inventory (BDI; Steer, Beck, Riskind, & Brown, 1987), these dimensions showed no correlation at all with the somatic complaints factor of the BDI. There are a number of possible reasons why there might be an association between perfectionism and somatic distress. One possible reason is that perfectionistic standards lead to a lowering of the threshold of distress in the presence of somatic symptoms, i.e., the perfectionistic demands are directly involved in the cognitive appraisal of the somatic symptoms as such. Another possible reason is that perfectionistic demands lower the threshold of distress in the face of daily hassles and other stressful life events, i.e., perfectionistic demands are involved in the cognitive appraisal of stressful events to such an extent that it leads to an objectively stronger stress response and thereby to more somatic distress. Still another possibility is that an experience of high socially prescribed perfectionism is stressful in itself, and therefore likely to produce both somatic and emotional distress. 3. Perfectionism and positive affect There is evidence that some aspects of perfectionism may be associated with positive rather than negative affect. Frost et al. (1993) used the Positive Affect-Negative Affect Scale (PANAS; Watson, Clark, & Tellegen, 1988) in a large sample of undergraduate students. The results showed weak positive correlations between positive affect and personal standards, organization, and self-oriented perfectionism. In a factor analysis of all the nine subscales of the MPS-F and the MPS-H, these authors found two factors, Maladaptive Evaluation Concerns (with high loadings for Socially Prescribed Perfectionism, Concern Over Mistakes, Doubts About Action, Parental Expectations, and Parental Criticism) and Positive Striving (with high loadings for Self-Oriented Perfectionism, Other-Oriented Perfectionism, Personal Standards, and Organization), of which the first correlated with depression and negative affect and the second correlated with positive affect. Of relevance in this context are also studies where Self-Oriented Perfectionism has been found to correlate positively with self-control (Flett et al., 1991), emotional sensitivity and social expressivity (Flett et al., 1996). These results are consistent with Hamachek's (1978) distinction between normal and neurotic perfectionism. According to him, normal perfectionism means to set high standards for oneself and to “derive a very real sense of pleasure from the labors of a painstaking effort”, and yet “feel free to be less precise as the situation permits” (p. 27). Neurotic perfectionism, on the other hand, means to set high standards and allow little latitude for making mistakes. As formulated by Frost et al. (1990, p. 450), “the psychological problems associated with perfectionism are probably more closely associated with these critical evaluation tendencies than with the setting of excessively high standards”. Other researchers have made similar distinctions in terms of positive vs. negative perfectionism (Slade and Owens, 1998 and Terry-Short et al., 1995), active vs. passive perfectionism (Adkins and Parker, 1996 and Lynd-Stevenson and Hearne, 1999), and adaptive vs. maladaptive perfectionism (Rice et al., 1998). As Slade and Owens (1998) put it, positive perfectionism reflects the pursuit of success and excellence, rather than the avoidance of failure, and is likely to be associated with positive emotional consequences such as pleasure, satisfaction, and euphoria. In the present study, we examined the associations between perfectionism, as operationalized by Hewitt and Flett's (1991b) MPS-H, and anger, somatic complaints, and positive affect. It was expected that self-oriented perfectionism, but not socially prescribed perfectionism, would correlate positively with positive affect, whereas anger and somatic complaints would show positive correlations primarily with socially prescribed perfectionism. In order to have a more objective measure of the physical health of the participants, they were not only asked to rate the presence of various kinds of somatic complaints, but were also asked whether they were currently undergoing any medical treatment.