The Bidirectional Relationship Between Making Choices and Self-Regulation

Choice and self-regulation share important underlying qualities, which suggests that they may reciprocally affect one another. Two studies tested whether making choices affects subsequent self-regulation. Study 1 found that after choosing options for a hypothetical computer, as compared to choosing options pre-chosen by the experimenter, participants stopped solving anagrams sooner. Study 2 revealed that compared to detailing one’s opinions, making multiple choices reduced consumption of a bad-tasting but healthy beverage. Two additional studies demonstrated that engaging in self-regulation decreases participants’ ability to switch decision strategies (study 3) or choose an option other than the status quo (study 4).


Kathleen D. Vohs and Jungkeun Kim (2007) ,"The Bidirectional Relationship Between Making Choices and Self-Regulation", in NA - Advances in Consumer Research Volume 34, eds. Gavan Fitzsimons and Vicki Morwitz, Duluth, MN : Association for Consumer Research, Pages: 419-420.


Kathleen D. Vohs, University of Minnesota, US
Jungkeun Kim, University of Minnesota, US


NA - Advances in Consumer Research Volume 34 | 2007

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