Learn vocabulary, terms, and more with flashcards, games, and other study tools. Counterfactual thinking wikimili, the best wikipedia reader. Pdf counterfactuals are thoughts about alternatives to past events, that is, thoughts of what might have been. Counterfactual thinking 315 at the beach and pearl was in the park, but also to the presupposed facts, ruby was not at the beach and pearl was not in the park e. The psychology of counterfactual thinking article pdf available in historical social research historische sozialforschung 342 january 2009 with 2,736 reads how we measure reads. Consequences for selfesteem and future motivation sean m. Envy and regret share a common feature, the counterfactual analysis of the individuals actions. Jan 07, 2018 counterfactual thinking and experiences of regret 1732 words 7 pages.
Pdf the psychology of counterfactual thinking researchgate. Note that in experiment 2, participants learned that the counterfactual outcome accrued to another individual. The functional theory of counterfactual thinking ncbi. These thoughts are usually triggered by negative events that block ones goals and desires. Under many cir cumstances, counterfactual thinking may underscore or. Counterfactual thinking refers to the mental process by which people consider salient alternatives to the events that actually happened roese, 1997. Section 11 takes a more general view of counterfactual thinking. Counterfactual thinking is the practice of examining the impossible to extract insights that can be applied elsewhere. In this section, we begin our consideration of the principal evidence in support of the functional theory of counterfactual thinking.
Emotions like regret and envy share a common origin. A successful theory of counterfactual conditionals should carry over to this wider domain. In other words, you imagine the consequences of something that is contrary to what actually happened or will have happened counter to the facts. Nobel prize winning professor of psychology daniel kahneman talks about counterfactual thinking and counterfactual emotions. We also define and discuss thought suppression and its rebound effect, as well as look at a. Counterfactual thinking definition psychology glossary. If hes right, we can all feel less guilty about reflecting on what might have been.
Cq press your definitive resource for politics, policy and people. The term counterfactual conditional was coined by nelson goodman in 1947, extending roderick chisholms 1946 notion of a contrarytofact conditional. Those thoughts that identify how an outcome could have been worse e. Learn more the psychology of counterfactual thinking routledge research international series in social psychology 1st edition. Byrne 2005 the mental representation of what might have been, in david r. Advantages counterfactual thinking can increase a persons willpower. An investigation of counterfactual thinking in individuals. Counterfactuals explanation and examples conceptually. In the present study, participants generated counterfactuals about their anagram performance, after which persistence on a second set of anagrams was measured.
This book provides a critical overview of significant developments in research and theory on counterfactual thinking that have emerged in recent years and spotlights exciting new directions for future research in this area. In short, counterfactual thinking is deeply connected to the regulation and coordination of goaldirected behavior. Ss then undid the outcome by altering events that preceded the outcome. The functional theory of counterfactual thinking kai epstude. The authors explain that while this can be positive and affirming, it more commonly engenders regret. As a time horizon passes, choices that were once available may become impossible. Counterfactual thinking are thoughts about alternatives to past events, that is, thoughts of what might have been. Like everything else, engaging in counterfactual thinking comes with its own advantages and disadvantages. The effects of counterfactual thinking on reactions to victimization monica k. We can also do the reverse, thinking about bad things that did not happen, such as when we narrowly avoid being in an accident. The purpose of the studies reported in this paper was to evaluate the function of counterfactual thinking ct in depression. Journal of personality and social psychology, 81, 946960. This evidence suggests that certain types of counterfactual thoughts may undermine appropriate diabetes selfcare, which is essential to the prevention of serious complications, such as blindness and amputation. Particularly with regard to jury behavior and deliberation in 21 10 williams, leeshaley, and price personal injury cases, toxic tort litigation, and so on, where plaintiffs allege injuries sustained at the hands of defendants, counterfactual thinking and causal attribution may be especially influential.
Counterfactual thinking in daily life typically centers on how personal action might have brought about personally important goal academic success, domestic calm, romantic bliss, etc. This article provides an updated account of the functional theory of counterfactual thinking, suggesting that such thoughts are best explained in terms of their role in behavior regulation and. Upward counterfactual thoughts involve the comparison of the obtained outcome with a more desirable alternative eliciting regret. Forms of decision avoidance result from reason and emotion christopher j. While counterfactual thinking has been leveraged in ml tasks that aim to predict the consequences of actionsinterventions, it has not yet been applied to more traditionalstatic supervised learning tasks, such as the prediction of labels in image. Kahneman and tversky offered the following scenario to a number of people.
Counterfactual thinking has a net benefit for the individual. Use features like bookmarks, note taking and highlighting while reading what might have been. The psychology of counterfactual thinking and millions of other books are available for amazon kindle. Counterfactual thinking often happens around situations of perceived luck.
Counterfactual thinking is a cognitive process that relates to considerations about events that have not occurred, whereby in the field of psychology it is usually meant that people ponder what would have been if they had made other decisions. This counterfactual dual meaning idea has led to several discoveries, perhaps most notably, the counterfactual inference effect. Counterfactual thinking refers to reconstructive thoughts about a past event, in which antecedents to the event are mentally mutated and possible changes to the outcomes are contemplated. Counterfactual thinking may influence behavior for the better, which is to say that counterfactual thinking may contribute to behavior regulation.
Sage reference the complete guide for your research journey. This article provides an updated account of the functional theory of counterfactual thinking, suggesting that such thoughts are best explained in terms of their role in. Counterfactual thinking and experiences of regret 1732 words 7 pages. As plot unfolds, forks in the road, surprising twists, and the overall recognition of multiple possibilities breathe life into the story. This article provides an updated account of the functional theory of counterfactual thinking, suggesting that such thoughts are best explained in terms of their role in behavior regulation and performance improvement. Nov 05, 2017 what happens when the narcissist knows youve figured them out duration. Kahneman explains that this field within psychology looks at. Pinel 69675 bron, france 2department of economics, university of minnesota, 1925 4th street south, 4101 hanson hall, minneapolis, mn, 554550462, usa. In other words, evaluating past possibilities can have value in. The social psychology of counterfactual thinking kindle edition by roese, neal j. Sage video bringing teaching, learning and research to life. In this case, counterfactual thinking and social comparison go hand in hand larrick, 1993, olson et al.
The psychology of counterfactual thinking ebook, 2005. Understanding counterfactuals, understanding causation. Schacterf,g a department of philosophy, duke university, usa b center for cognitive neuroscience, duke university, usa c duke institute for brain sciences, usa. We report the results of two experiments in which we examined this controllability effect in counterfactual thinking. The psychology of counterfactual thinking 1st edition. Yet, evidence of counterfactual thought and its effects in realli. Selfhandicapping, excuse making, and counterfactual thinking. A decision followed by a negative consequence nor mally evokes counterfactual musings centering on alter native but foregone decision options. Neural activity associated with self, other, and objectbased. Recognizing counterfactual thinking in social media texts acl. Despite the extensive research on counterfac tual thinking, counterfactual language forms have not been studied in computational linguistics. Pdf the role of counterfactual thinking and causal. Article information, pdf download for the functional theory of counterfactual thinking.
The benefit of counterfactual thinking psychology today. To begin with, counterfactual thinking is activated by negative affect. The necessity of god and the psychology of counterfactual. With regard to language, a proclamation that is adverse to truth, specifically when utilized to develop a conditional clause.
Nevertheless, counterfactual thinking may also serve another function, namely, affect regulation. We examined the relationship between upward counterfactual thinking and depression. Counterfactual thinking and posttraumatic stress reactions. In real life, people often learn about the outcomes forgone by comparing their own outcomes to those of others. The dissatisfaction of having your first offer accepted. Counterfactual thinking can envision outcomes that were either better or worse than what actually happened. A collection of thoughtprovoking papers by key social and cognitive psychologists containing novel theoretical insights, and, in many cases descriptions of.
In the context of counterfactual thinking, rumination can be thought of as the largescale and constant employment of upward counterfactual thinking in ones psychological life. A counterfactual conditional abbreviated cf, is a conditional with a false ifclause. T1 the functional basis of counterfactual thinking. This article provides an updated account of the functional theory of counterfactual thinking, suggesting that such thoughts are best explained in. Cued by this seminal work, social psychologists in the. Causal modeling has been recognized as a potential solution to many challenging problems in machine learning ml. The psychology of what if going back in time, or counterfactual thinking, can have mixed outcomes. In this overview of the psychological basis of counterfactual thinking, we examine how such thoughts influence emotions and carry benefits for everyday behavior. The benefit of counterfactual thinking counterfactual thinking enhances mood and performance.
Counterfactual thinking has increasingly fascinated social psychologists for at least three reasons. Two studies examined the relation between selfesteem and counterfactual thinking consideration of mighthavebeen alternatives to reality. Counterfactual thinking description university of british columbia. In this lesson, we define counterfactual thinking and discuss the effects of this cognitive process. Start studying social cognition exam 1 counterfactual thinking. Mccrea university of konstanz researchers interested in counterfactual thinking have often found that upward counterfactual thoughts. When people think about what might have been, they mentally undo controllable rather than uncontrollable events. Counterfactual thinking has traditionally been linked to feelings of regret 1. The role of counterfactual thinking in negotiations adam d. N2 counterfactual thoughts mighthavebeen reconstructions of past outcomes may serve an affective function feeling better and a preparative function future improvement. The functional theory of counterfactual thinking kai. The psychology of counterfactual thinking northwestern scholars. On some occasions, individuals contemplate the outcomes that might have emerged had they pursued another course of action.
In this over view of the psychological basis of counterfactual thinking, we examine how such thoughts influence emotions and carry benefits for. Counterfactual thinking can improve ones life or have negative consequences depending on the type of counterfactuals the person employs. In other words, people find it helpful to engage in counterfactual thinking when considering complex causal scenarios. Emotions of regretfulness or dismay might be present, in additio. The psychology of counterfactual thinking request pdf. Jun 09, 2016 the benefit of counterfactual thinking counterfactual thinking enhances mood and performance. Apr 07, 20 psychology definition of counterfactual. The psychology of counterfactual thinking routledge research international series in social psychology 1st edition. Counterfactuals are thoughts about alternatives to past events, that is, thoughts of what might have been. Someone in front of you drops down unconscious, but fortunately theres a paramedic standing by at the scene. Consequences for selfesteem and future motivation counterfactual thinking involves thinking about how a past event could have been better or worse. Counterfactual thinking, 3 selfhandicapping, excusemaking, and counterfactual thinking. Counterfactual thinking cft, which involves envisioning alternate outcomes to a past event, has been shown to affect peoples perceptions of, and attributions regarding, the causes of that event.
Cultural differences in counterfactual thinking and the. There is an interesting and complex literature on both the psychology of counterfactual thinking and its place in western critical thought kvart 1986, lewis 1973. Counterfactual thinking and functional differences in. Pdf the functional theory of counterfactual thinking. Envisioning a counterfactual event often requires imagining a plausible way in which the event could have come about. Kim, and victoria husted medvec personality and social psychology bulletin 2002 28. The study of counterfactual speculation has increasingly engaged the interest of scholars in a wide range of domains such as philosophy, human geography. This method of thinking occurs more frequently than some people might think. It is essentially if only thinking wondering what the consequences would have been if something had or had not happened. Counterfactual thinking and experiences of regret introduction counterfactual thinking is the cognitive process in which individuals can simulate alternative realities, to think about how things could have turned out differently, with statements such as what if and if only. Effect of counterfactual and factual thinking on causal judgments. Ss imagined themselves in scenarios with another actor that resulted in either success or failure. The experiments show that the mutability of controllable events is influenced by the perceived appropriateness or inappropriateness of the events.
Study 18 terms counterfactual thinking flashcards quizlet. Sometimes counterfactual thinking can lead to individuals creating new memories that replace the old ones such as a positive situation occurring instead of a traumatic event. Further research on counterfactual thinking may assist in the design of educational initiatives to encouragesuccessful diabetes selfcare. You could push the paramedic out of the way and do the cpr yourself, but youll likely do a worse job. Hilton and patrizia catellani eds, the psychology of counterfactual thinking abingdon. Anderson university at albany, state university of new york several independent lines of research bear on the question of why individuals avoid decisions by postponing them, failing to act, or accepting the status quo.
When such thinking, characterized by an i really messed up mentality, comes to permeate ones daily psychology, negativity follows. The emotional response to an event depends on how easily one can conjure up alternate outcomes that are either better or worse, the. Regret and counterfactual thoughts have been extensively studied in laboratory settings characterized by unlimited future options. Motivation and emotionbook2017counterfactual thinking. Roese says that counterfactual thinking seems to help us get a sense of whats going on, give meaning to our lives, and get a better perspective on things. In functional terms, counterfactual thoughts thus come to mind in response to those experiences where corrective thinking would. The cinematic closecall is effective because it evokes counterfactual thinking and its emotional offshoots, such as relief or regret. Counterfactual thinking refers to mental constructions of alternatives to past events. Aug 17, 2016 in a 2009 essay, counterfactual investing, cabot research noted that emotional responses to outcomes often are influenced by what might have been, and counterfactual thinking often ends in regret. Mandel university of victoria the significance of counterfactual thinking in the causal judgment process has been. Counterfactual thinking is when a person imagines an alternative for an event and assesses the consequences of that change. Sage business cases real world cases at your fingertips. The failure of counterfactual thinking to diminish likely increases the likelihood of negative consequences.
Given these links, it might seem obvious to expect that psychological studies of counterfactual thought would be helpful in thinking about philosophical accounts of. Effect of counterfactual and factual thinking on causal judgments david r. In this overview of the psychological basis of counterfactual thinking, we examine how. Cultural differences in counterfactual thinking and the hindsight bias this paper addresses the intersection of two widely studied phenomenon in psychology counterfactual thinking and the hindsight biasand how their relationship may vary cross culturally. The person might imagine how the consequence may have turned out differently if the antecedents had been different.
Apr 07, 20 psychology definition of counterfactual thinking. Counterfactual reasoning means thinking about alternative possibilities for past or future events. Imagine that you have just gotten into a car accident while on your way home from work. Counterfactual thinking is a concept in psychology that involves the human tendency to create possible alternatives to life events that have already occurred.
Counterfactual thoughts have a variety of effects on emotions, beliefs, and behavior, with regret being the most common resulting emotion. Counterfactual thinking and regulatory fit judgment and decision. Counterfactual thinking definition counterfactual thinking focus on how the past might have been, or the present could be, different. Counterfactual thinking psychology definition iresearchnet. Key issues considered include the relations between counterfactual and casua. Key issues considered include the relations between counterfactual and casual reasoning, the functional bases of counterfactual thinking, the role of counterfactual thinking in the experience of emotion and the importance of counterfactual thinking in the context of crime and justice. Counterfactual thinking facilitates behavioral intentions. That is, they consider the possibility that some alternative outcome or event could have unfolded, called counterfactual thinking. Everything you need to know about counterfactual thinking.1284 960 1220 350 854 450 196 251 517 938 1509 70 1077 742 743 1010 243 696 1248 889 287 805 270 55 1332 492 449 1262 756 913 1484