The boundaries of minimization as a technique for improving affect: good for the goose but not for the gander?
Article first published online: 31 JUL 2013
© 2013 Wiley Periodicals, Inc
Journal of Applied Social Psychology
Volume 43, Issue 8, pages 1717–1724, August 2013
How to Cite
Grover, K. W., Pinel, E. C., Bosson, J. K. and LeBeau, L. S. (2013), The boundaries of minimization as a technique for improving affect: good for the goose but not for the gander?. Journal of Applied Social Psychology, 43: 1717–1724. doi: 10.1111/jasp.12127
- Issue published online: 13 AUG 2013
- Article first published online: 31 JUL 2013
Research on minimization as a coping strategy suggests that it alleviates negative affect following threats. In contrast, research on minimization as a support-giving strategy suggests that it does more harm than good. Does this mean that minimization works when it is self-generated, but does not when it is offered by others? The present study examined the effect of self- and externally- generated minimizations on people with high and low self-esteem following a self-threat. Results suggest that externally-generated minimizations do not alleviate negative affect when they occur before the recipient has had time to cope. Discussion centers around the implications of these findings for past research, as well as distinctions between how people with low versus high self-esteem cope with negative events.