The study tested several propositions about an important construct in Bowen's theory of differentiation of self, using an Israeli sample of university students to examine relationships between differentiation of self, social anxiety, and physiological symptoms. The main finding was that family differentiation was negatively correlated with social anxiety (particularly fear of negative evaluation) and physiological symptoms. Results suggest that differentiation is a meaningful construct for Israeli students, and that less differentiated students may be at risk for high levels of social anxiety and symptomatology. They also suggest that therapists should consider various aspects of differentiation when treating a client's social anxiety.
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Peleg-Popko, O. Bowen Theory: A Study of Differentiation of Self, Social Anxiety, and Physiological Symptoms. Contemporary Family Therapy 24, 355–369 (2002). https://doi.org/10.1023/A:1015355509866