Thinking concretely or abstractly: The influence of fit between goal progress and goal construal on subsequent self-regulation

Jooyoung Park, William M Hedgcock

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

5 Scopus citations

Abstract

This article examines the relationship between goal progress and construal level and its influence on subsequent goal pursuit. Using action identification theory, we hypothesized that greater perceived goal progress leads to higher-level construals and that the fit between goal progress and goal construal is more likely to enhance self-regulation than non-fit. Our findings indicate that, compared with lesser perceived goal progress, greater perceived goal progress induces higher-level construals (studies 1a-2a). Moreover, as people perceive greater goal progress, abstract goal construal (i.e., "why") is more likely to promote goal-consistent behavior than concrete goal construal (i.e., "how" studies 2a-2b). We also observed that this fit between goal progress and goal construal influences actual self-regulatory behavior (study 3).

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)395-409
Number of pages15
JournalJournal of Consumer Psychology
Volume26
Issue number3
DOIs
StatePublished - Jul 1 2016
Externally publishedYes

Keywords

  • Construal level
  • Goal construal
  • Goal progress
  • Motivation
  • Self-regulation

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