Ethics-Relevant Values as Antecedents of Personality Change: Longitudinal Findings from the Life and Time Study

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Version: Author's accepted manuscript
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Serval ID
serval:BIB_85A3082E3917
Type
Article: article from journal or magazin.
Collection
Publications
Institution
Title
Ethics-Relevant Values as Antecedents of Personality Change: Longitudinal Findings from the Life and Time Study
Journal
Collabra: Psychology
Author(s)
Thalmayer Amber Gayle, Saucier Gerard, Flournoy John C., Srivastava Sanjay
ISSN
2474-7394
Publication state
Published
Issued date
11/11/2019
Peer-reviewed
Oui
Volume
5
Number
1
Language
english
Abstract
What leads personality to develop in adulthood? Values, guiding principles that apply across contexts, may capture motivation for growth and change. An essentialist trait perspective posits that personality changes only as a result of organic factors. But evidence suggests that psychosocial factors also influence personality change, especially during young adulthood. In the Life and Time study of sources of personality change in adulthood, we specifically explore ethically-relevant value priorities, those related to the relative prioritization of narrow self-interest over the concerns of a larger community. According to Rollo May (1967), “mature values”, including aspects of both self-transcendence and self-determination, should serve to diminish or prevent neurotic anxiety. This is consistent with research on materialism, which is associated with lower well-being. An index based on May’s proposal and several related constructs (materialism, unmitigated self-interest, collectivism and individualism) are tested longitudinally as possible antecedents of Big Five/Six personality trait change using bivariate LCMSR models in a national community sample (N = 864 at Time 1). Contrary to an essentialist trait perspective, these value priorities more often preceded change in personality traits than vice-versa. Somewhat consistent with May’s theory, higher “mature” values preceded higher openness (statistically significant at the p < .005 level). Higher vertical individualism significantly preceded lower compassion, intellect and openness. At the suggestive (p < .05) level, higher unmitigated self-interest preceded lower conscientiousness, higher vertical individualism preceded higher volatility, higher mature values preceded higher honesty/propriety and politeness, higher horizontal collectivism preceded higher orderliness, agreeableness, and assertiveness and lower intellect, and higher horizontal individualism preceded lower withdrawal. In two of three cases, suggestive personality-as-antecedent-of-values-change effects were reciprocal with the values-effects: higher conscientiousness scores reciprocally preceded lower unmitigated self-interest, and higher volatility higher vertical individualism. No significant or suggestive “stand-alone”, non-reciprocal personality on values effects were found.
Keywords
Values, Longitudinal Studies, Personality Change, Five Factor Personality Model, Personality Development
Open Access
Yes
Create date
22/10/2019 11:27
Last modification date
20/11/2019 6:20
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