What You Don’T Know Can Hurt You: Uncertainty Depletes Self-Regulatory Resources

Jessica Alquist, Florida State, USA
Roy Baumeister, Florida State, USA
Dianne Tice, Florida State, USA
Five studies showed that uncertainty consumes self-regulatory resources and thereby impairs subsequent self-regulation. Participants were randomly assigned to either uncertain conditions or control conditions. Uncertainty caused poor performance on measures of self-control unrelated to the uncertainty manipulation. Uncertainty impaired self-control even more than certainty of negative outcomes.
[ to cite ]:
Jessica Alquist, Roy Baumeister, and Dianne Tice (2012) ,"What You Don’T Know Can Hurt You: Uncertainty Depletes Self-Regulatory Resources", in NA - Advances in Consumer Research Volume 40, eds. Zeynep Gürhan-Canli, Cele Otnes, and Rui (Juliet) Zhu, Duluth, MN : Association for Consumer Research, Pages: 9-12.