“Self-Handicapping”

Alcohol Abuse following Success
  • Steven Berglas

Abstract

Ex-stars and former greats are not the only ones who suffer as a result of noncontingent success experiences. As noted in our earlier analysis of the stress of success, personal beauty, ascribed status, connections with the “right” people, and so on, are often the sole determinants of the rewards an individual receives. Boss’s sons (daughters, etc.) and other relatives of rich or powerful people, to name but one group, are frequently the recipients of a host of positive outcomes for who they are, not what they do. In those instances when an individual does not actually earn the reinforcers he receives—regardless of why—he will likely experience the disruptive effects of noncontingent success.

Keywords

Obesity Depression Defend Cohol 

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References

  1. 1.
    Leaming, B., “Orson Welles: The Unfilled Promise,” The New York Times Magazine, July 14, 1985, p. 18.Google Scholar
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    See Jones, E. E., and Berglas, S., “Control of Attributions about the Self Through Self-Handicapping Strategies: The Appeal of Alcohol and the Role of Underachievement,” Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin, 1978, 4, 200–206Google Scholar
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    and Berglas, S., “Self-Handicapping and Self-Handicappers: A Cognitive/Attributional Model of Interpersonal Self-protective Behavior,” Perspectives in Personality, Volume 1, R. Hogan and W. H. Jones, Eds. (Greenwich, Connecticut: JAI Press, 1985), pp. 235–270.Google Scholar
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    See Berglas, S., “Toward a Typology of Self-Handicapping Alcohol Abusers,” Advances in Applied Social Psychology, M. J. Saks and L. Saxe, Eds. (Hillsdale, N.J.: Lawrence Erlbaum, in press), 3; and Berglas, S., “The Self-Handicapping Model of Alcohol Abuse,” Psychological Theories of Drinking and Alcoholism, H. T. Blane and V. E. Leonard, Eds. (New York: Guilford Press, in press).Google Scholar
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    See Berglas, S., and Jones, E. E., “Drug Choice as a Self-Handicapping Strategy in Response to Noncontingent Success,” Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 1978, 36, 405–417CrossRefGoogle Scholar
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    and Tucker, J. A., Vuchininch, R. E., and Sobell, M. B., “Alcohol Consumption as a Self-Handicapping Strategy,” Journal of Abnormal Psychology, 1981, 90, 220–230.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  7. 5.
    Berglas, S., “Self-Handicapping and Self-Handicappers: A Cognitive/Attributional Model of Interpersonal Self-Protective Behavior,” Perspectives in Personality, Volume 1, R. Hogan and W. H. Jones, Eds. (Greenwich, Connecticut: JAI Press, 1985), pp. 235–270.Google Scholar
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Copyright information

© Steven Berglas 1986

Authors and Affiliations

  • Steven Berglas

There are no affiliations available

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