Trottier, Polivy: The Perception Of Self Change

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bstract There is a common misconception that self-change is accomplished quickly and easily. Many people embark on self-change because they believe it will result in various benefits and a feeling of control. A common result of failure to change one’s self is false-hope syndrome, which is when one has an overconfident expectation that they can accomplish the change they want by programs that say that change is easy and can happen fast. This creates an unrealistic expectation that they can do the same thing. Once people understand that self-change is not easy they become discouraged and frustrated therefore they give up before trying again. Before embarking on self-change, one needs to have realistic expectations and understand how difficult…show more content…
One major area of study for self-change is the false-hope phenomenon that can result if one does not succeed in this change due to unrealistic…show more content…
The reason one wants to change is because many people believe that this change will benefit them in multiple ways such as helping them achieve other goals (2000). In addition, I agree that failure in self-change can result in the false-hope phenomenon. Trottier, Polivy and Herman support the theory of false-hope by emphasizing that many people continue to make attempts to change themselves despite the amount of failures they have had in the past. People keep attempting to change because at some point in this process they had short-term success and believe that they will be able to attain their goal in the future (2009). This phenomenon can result when one has unrealistic expectations that they are not able to meet which creates feelings of frustration, discouragement, and failure (Polivy & Herman, 2000). Failure can result from lack of willpower and is more difficult than success, as success results from greater personal effort (Polivy & Herman, 2002). A common characteristic of false-hope phenomenon is overconfidence which leads to overestimating the amount, ease, and speed in which one can accomplish self-change (Polivy & Herman, 2000). I agree that to change one’s self people must understand that changing is a difficult process and they need to have realistic expectations about the amount of change that will happen as well as the amount of time
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