Private self-consciousness and the five-factor model of personality: distinguishing rumination from reflection.

Author: Trapnell PD1, Campbell JD
Author Information:
1Department of Psychology, Ohio State University at Mansfield 44906, USA.
Conference/Journal: J Pers Soc Psychol.
Date published: 1999 Feb
Other: Volume ID: 76 , Issue ID: 2 , Pages: 284-304 , Word Count: 148

A distinction between ruminative and reflective types of private self-attentiveness is introduced and evaluated with respect to L. R. Goldberg's (1982) list of 1,710 English trait adjectives (Study 1), the five-factor model of personality (FFM) and A. Fenigstein, M. F. Scheier, and A. Buss's (1975) Self-Consciousness Scales (Study 2), and previously reported correlates and effects of private self-consciousness (PrSC; Studies 3 and 4). Results suggest that the PrSC scale confounds two unrelated, motivationally distinct dispositions--rumination and reflection--and that this confounding may account for the "self-absorption paradox" implicit in PrSC research findings: Higher PrSC scores are associated with more accurate and extensive self-knowledge yet higher levels of psychological distress. The potential of the FFM to provide a comprehensive framework for conceptualizing self-attentive dispositions, and to order and integrate research findings within this domain, is discussed.

PMID: 10074710 DOI: 10.1037//0022-3514.76.2.284

- quality of self-focused attention is instrumental in determining whether it leads to well-being or distress.
keywords: mindfulness