Goal conflict and well-being: a review and hierarchical model of goal conflict, ambivalence, self-discrepancy and self-concordance

Rebecca E. Kelly, Warren Mansell, Alex M. Wood

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

47 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

This paper reviews empirical evidence for associations between goal conflict, ambivalence, self-discrepancy, self-concordance and well-being. The research indicates that goal conflict, ambivalence and discrepancy impede well-being, whilst concordance promotes well-being. The evidence was strongest for ambivalence, self-discrepancy, and self-concordance, and weakest for goal conflict. A hierarchical conceptualisation of the four related constructs is presented. Goal conflict, ambivalence, and self-discrepancy may occur at different levels within a goal hierarchy, which ranges from abstract, high level goals to low-level, concrete goals. Self-concordance is conceptualised as a property of the goal hierarchy, where goals are un-conflicted and facilitate intrinsic motivations and needs. Conflict at multiple or higher levels in the hierarchy may pose greater problems for well-being.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)212-229
Number of pages18
JournalPersonality and Individual Differences
Volume85
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Oct 2015
Externally publishedYes

Keywords

  • Ambivalence
  • Goal conflict
  • Hierarchical
  • Self-concordance
  • Self-discrepancy
  • Well-being

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