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Personality & Social Interactions. Mechanisms of Interaction. Personality interacts with the situation in 3 ways: Selection: who we select to be around Evocation : the reactions that our personalities evoke in others Manipulation : how we manipulate other people to get what we want.

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mechanisms of interaction
Mechanisms of Interaction
  • Personality interacts with the situation in 3 ways:
    • Selection: who we select to be around
    • Evocation: the reactions that our personalities evoke in others
    • Manipulation: how we manipulate other people to get what we want
who do we choose for a mate
Who do we choose for a mate?
  • Study of 33 countries found that personality processes are the second biggest factor in mate selection (behind attraction/love)
  • No support for the complementary needs theory
  • Attraction similarity theory is supported.
  • Assortative mating: the finding that people marry those who are similar to themselves.
key to marital happiness
Key to Marital happiness
  • Having a partner who has the following characteristics (regardless of what you thought you were looking for):
    • Agreeable
    • Emotionally stable
    • Open
    • The difference scores between what you wanted in a partner and what you got does NOT predict marital satisfaction.
ratings of spouses personalities
Ratings of spouses’ personalities
  • After the first year (honeymoon effect), in which people rated their partners as high on all of the good traits, perceptions of personality traits became more negative.
  • Those who maintainpositive illusions about their partner’s personality maintain high levels of satisfaction.
violation of desire theory
Violation of Desire Theory
  • Breakups occur more often when one’s desires are violated than when they’re fulfilled.
  • People whose spouses lack desired characteristics will more frequently dissolve the marriage.
  • Those dissimilar in personality will most often break up.
  • Research finds that being married to someone who lacks the personality characteristics that most people desire (dependable, agreeable, stable) puts one at risk of breakup.
  • The tendency to feel tense, worried, or anxious during social interactions or even anticipating interactions
  • Experienced by 90% at some point, but some are dispositionally shy.
  • May be related to objective self-awareness. They’re too self-conscious.
  • Kagan found that 20% of 4-month-olds show signs of shyness, but half are no longer shy in childhood.
  • Parents who push their shy children into interactions can make their children less shy.
  • Parents who give in to child’s shyness reinforce the shyness.
causes of shyness
Causes of Shyness
  • Seems to have both a genetic and learned component.
  • Shy people have an overreactiveamygdala.
  • Learned component is that shy people learn to have evaluation apprehension (fear of being negatively evaluated by others).
  • Shy people ruminate over social interactions and wonder if they’ve said something wrong. They’re high in social anxiety.
  • Others may interpret shyness as unfriendliness.
tips for shyness
Tips for shyness
  • Show up and force yourself to talk to people.
  • Give yourself credit; stop being your own worst critic.
  • Take baby steps and make small goals at first.
  • Shift your attention to other people—ask them questions.
  • Exude warmth. Smile, make eye contact, and look relaxed.
  • Anticipate failure. It’s a learning curve.
  • Realize that many people are shy, and no one is perfect all the time.
  • Reactions that we evoke from other people because of our personalities
  • Hostile attributional bias: the tendency to infer hostile intent on the part of others in the face of ambiguous behaviors from them.
  • Aggressive people are more likely to interpret behaviors from others as being hostile
  • Expectancy confirmation: like self-fulfilling prophecy; beliefs about personality characteristics of others cause them to evoke in others actions that are consistent with the initial beliefs
how personality evokes conflicts in relationships
How personality evokes conflicts in relationships
  • Someone can behave in ways that make the partner upset.
  • Someone can elicit actions from another that in turn upset the original elicitor.
  • Links between personality & conflict show up at least as early as early adolescence.
  • Strongest predictor of evoked anger and upset are two personality characteristics:
    • Disagreeableness—the #1 predictor of wife’s being upset with husband
    • Emotional instability
gottman s tips for a happy marriage
Gottman’s tips for a happy marriage
  • Get to know your partner’s world. Be empathic.
  • Remember what made you fall in love with your partner in the first place.
  • Turn toward, not away from, each other in times of stress.
  • Share power, even if you think you’re the expert.
  • Start gently when arguing and back off when feelings get hurt.
  • Agree to disagree when problems can’t be solved.
  • Become a “we” instead of an “I.”
manipulation social influence
Manipulation: Social Influence
  • Charm
  • Coercion
  • Silent treatment
  • Reason
  • Regression
  • Self-abasement
  • Responsibility invocation
  • Hardball
  • Pleasure induction
  • Social comparison
  • Monetary reward
  • Only gender difference in these is that women are more likely to use regression.
personality traits and manipulation tactics
Personality Traits and Manipulation Tactics
  • Dominance/extraversion: coercion and responsibility invocation
  • Submission: self-abasement and (surprisingly), hardball
  • Agreeableness: pleasure induction and reason
  • Disagreeableness: silent treatment, coercion, revenge
  • Conscientiousness: reason
  • Intellect/openness: reason, pleasure induction, responsibility invocation
  • Low on intellect/openness: social comparison
  • Neurosis: hardball, coercion, reason, monetary reward, and especially regression
dark triad of personality traits
Dark Triad of Personality Traits
  • Narcissism
  • Psychopathy
  • Machiavellianism
  • All of these types manipulate others through coercion, hardball, reciprocity, social comparison, monetary reward, and charm.
  • Hardball is particularly common.