Skip to main content Accessibility help
×
Home
Hostname: page-component-55597f9d44-mm7gn Total loading time: 0.565 Render date: 2022-08-15T10:28:25.287Z Has data issue: true Feature Flags: { "shouldUseShareProductTool": true, "shouldUseHypothesis": true, "isUnsiloEnabled": true, "useRatesEcommerce": false, "useNewApi": true } hasContentIssue true

5 - Goals and Behavior

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  05 June 2012

Charles S. Carver
Affiliation:
University of Miami
Michael F. Scheier
Affiliation:
Carnegie Mellon University, Pennsylvania
Get access

Summary

You must imagine your life … and then it happens.

(John Updike, The Witches of Eastwick)

To say that behavior is regulated by feedback processes is to assume the existence of reference values for behavior. In this chapter we consider reference values and some differences among them. For most practical purposes the term reference value is interchangeable with the term goal. Life, in this framework, is a continual process of establishing goals and adjusting patterns of behavior to match those goals more closely, using informational feedback as a guide.

GOALS

This emphasis on goals is very much in line with a growing emphasis on goal constructs in today's personality–social psychology (Austin & Vancouver, 1996; Elliott & Dweck, 1988; Miller & Read, 1987; Pervin, 1982, 1989). A variety of labels are used in this literature, reflecting differences in the emphases that various writers place on aspects of the goal construct. The next section briefly reviews a few of these constructs.

An Overview of Broad Goal Constructs

One of the earliest of this generation of goal constructs was Klinger's (1975, 1977) use of the phrase current concern to describe goals with which a person is presently engaged. This phrase conveys the sense that the goals are temporary. They occupy the mind for a while but eventually yield to other concerns. The phrase also suggests a sense of mental engagement with an issue or problem, a quality of unfinished business.

Type
Chapter
Information
Publisher: Cambridge University Press
Print publication year: 1998

Access options

Get access to the full version of this content by using one of the access options below. (Log in options will check for institutional or personal access. Content may require purchase if you do not have access.)
3
Cited by

Save book to Kindle

To save this book to your Kindle, first ensure coreplatform@cambridge.org is added to your Approved Personal Document E-mail List under your Personal Document Settings on the Manage Your Content and Devices page of your Amazon account. Then enter the ‘name’ part of your Kindle email address below. Find out more about saving to your Kindle.

Note you can select to save to either the @free.kindle.com or @kindle.com variations. ‘@free.kindle.com’ emails are free but can only be saved to your device when it is connected to wi-fi. ‘@kindle.com’ emails can be delivered even when you are not connected to wi-fi, but note that service fees apply.

Find out more about the Kindle Personal Document Service.

Available formats
×

Save book to Dropbox

To save content items to your account, please confirm that you agree to abide by our usage policies. If this is the first time you use this feature, you will be asked to authorise Cambridge Core to connect with your account. Find out more about saving content to Dropbox.

Available formats
×

Save book to Google Drive

To save content items to your account, please confirm that you agree to abide by our usage policies. If this is the first time you use this feature, you will be asked to authorise Cambridge Core to connect with your account. Find out more about saving content to Google Drive.

Available formats
×