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Too perfectionist to flow: The roles of perfectionistic strivings and perfectionistic concerns for flow in dance

Abstract

Flow refers to a state during when the person feels the merging of action and awareness while having a complete concentration on the task and an increased sense of control. Previous studies indicated flow to be associated with both trait-based factors and task characteristics. Contributing to the previous research on the association between perfectionism and flow, we examine the interactive effects of perfectionistic strivings and perfectionistic concerns on dispositional flow in dance, which is an activity conducive to flow. In an online survey study, we collected data from 161 individuals (113 female), aged between 18 and 56 (M = 29.52, SD = 8.41), who actively engage in dance for professional or recreational purposes. Our results show that there is a significant interactive effect of perfectionistic strivings and perfectionistic concerns on dispositional flow, such that perfectionistic concerns is associated with lower levels of dispositional flow when perfectionistic strivings is low but not when it is high. These findings imply that in the absence of perfectionistic standards, experiencing significant concerns about how one is doing seems to be associated with a significant difficulty in experiencing flow while dancing. Importantly, the results highlight the specific role of setting goals for the self as a characteristic that has significant associations with the optimal experience in dance setting.

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Data Availability

The data will be provided by the first author upon reasonable request.

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This work was supported by Koç University Graduate School of Social Sciences and Humanities. The funding source had no involvement in the conduct of the research or preparation of the article.

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Correspondence to İlayda Arslan.

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This study was approved by Koç University Committee on Human Research.

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Arslan, İ., Altan-Atalay, A. Too perfectionist to flow: The roles of perfectionistic strivings and perfectionistic concerns for flow in dance. Curr Psychol (2022). https://doi.org/10.1007/s12144-022-03364-9

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  • DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/s12144-022-03364-9

Keywords

  • Flow
  • Dance
  • Perfectionistic concerns
  • Perfectionistic strivings