You Should Know Better: Can Self-Affirmation Facilitate Information-Seeking Behavior and Interpersonal Discussion?

Stefanie Z. Demetriades*, Nathan Walter

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Scopus citations

Abstract

This study explores whether self-affirmation has the capacity not merely to reduce the perceived threat associated with health-related information but also to facilitate interpersonal discussion and affect health information–seeking behavior. The context for the study is the ongoing California drought, which serves as suitable context to examine the intersection of self-affirmation and information-seeking behavior because it involves a threatening message (the destructive consequences of the drought) and highlights discrepancies between actual (water waste) and prosocial (water conservation) behavior. Results of a month-long longitudinal panel study demonstrate significant effects of self-affirmation on interpersonal discussion, information seeking, knowledge, and water-conserving behavior across time. Implications for theorizing longer term effects of self-affirmation and practical implications for promoting behavioral change through the enhancement of knowledge and self-esteem are considered.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1131-1140
Number of pages10
JournalJournal of Health Communication
Volume21
Issue number11
DOIs
StatePublished - Nov 1 2016

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Health(social science)
  • Communication
  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health
  • Library and Information Sciences

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