Reactions to mistakes among subjects high and low in perfectionistic concern over mistakes

Randy O. Frost, Theresa A. Turcotte, Richard G. Heimberg, Jill I. Mattia, Craig S. Holt, Debra A. Hope

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

69 Scopus citations

Abstract

Perfectionistic concern over mistakes refers to the tendency to react negatively to mistakes, to interpret mistakes as equivalent to failure, and to believe that one will lose the respect of others following failure (Frost, Marten, Lahart, & Rosenblate, 1990). In this experiment, the reactions of subjects high and low in perfectionistic concern over mistakes to a task with a high frequency of mistakes and a task with a low frequency of mistakes were examined. People high in perfectionistic concern over mistakes reacted with more negative mood, lowered confidence, and a greater sense that they "should have done better" compared to subjects low in perfectionistic concern over mistakes. Furthermore, high-perfectionistic-concern-over-mistake subjects believed others seeing their performance would perceive them as less intelligent, and they were also less willing to share their performance results. These differences between subjects high and low in perfectionistic concern over mistakes were almost exclusive to the high-mistake-frequency condition. There were few differences in the low-mistake-frequency task.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)195-205
Number of pages11
JournalCognitive Therapy and Research
Volume19
Issue number2
DOIs
StatePublished - Apr 1995

Keywords

  • concern over mistakes
  • mistake perception
  • perfectionism
  • self-evaluation

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Experimental and Cognitive Psychology
  • Clinical Psychology

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