Institutional Repository of Key Laboratory of Behavioral Science, CAS
|Alternative Title||Identity Motives:Concept, Measurement, and Psychological Effects|
|包寒吴霜; 蔡华俭; 罗宇|
Identity refers to people’s answer to the question “Who am I?”. In short, identity includes all aspects of self-images. Human identities are not static. Some psychological needs can guide the ongoing processes of identity construction, maintenance, defense, and change. Such needs are known as identity motives, which refer to “tendencies or strivings toward certain identity states and away from others”. To understand identity motives and their functions, researchers have conducted a series of empirical studies and developed an integrated model of identity motives - the motivated identity construction theory (MICT). In this article, the authors aim to review these studies, propose a new model to organize various identity motives, and discuss future directions. According to the MICT and latest empirical evidence, people are motivated to view themselves as positive (the self-esteem motive), competent and capable (the efficacy motive), different from other people (the distinctiveness motive), while also being included and accepted by significant others (the belonging motive). Additionally, people strive to see their past, present, and future selves as continuous and interconnected (the continuity motive) and their lives as meaningful (the meaning motive). These six motives are not independent from each other but interrelated in a meaningful way. Existing studies have revealed important functions of identity motives, such as guiding identity processes and promoting psychological wellbeing. First, identity definition is mainly guided by the continuity, meaning, self-esteem, and distinctiveness motives, whereas identity enactment is largely predicted by the belonging and efficacy motives. Second, the continuity motive is the major motivational component that guides the process of identity maintenance. Third, when individuals are confronted with identity threats, the self-esteem, meaning, and belonging motives can help buffer against threatening information. Fourth, the self-esteem, efficacy, continuity, and meaning motives can influence the direction of identity change. Finally, the satisfaction of the self-esteem, efficacy, meaning, and distinctiveness motives predicts positive effect and psychological well-being. In sum, all the identity motives work together and complement each other in guiding identity-related processes. These findings shed light on both empirical research and organizational application concerning self and identity. Nonetheless, previous studies are limited in several ways, which in turn point to directions for future research: first, future studies should test the dimensions of identity motives based on exploratory and confirmatory factor analyses rather than solely theoretical assumptions. To help clarify this issue, the current review proposes a 3-dimension model to organize these motives. The first dimension is positivity, including self-esteem and efficacy motives, focusing on the affective valence of identity. The second dimension is integrity, including continuity and meaning motives, focusing on the cognitive content of identity. The third dimension is relationality, including distinctiveness and belonging motives, focusing on the interpersonal characteristics of identity. This model provides a concise frame, but needs empirical examinations. Second, since identity construction is a lifelong dynamic process, future research should examine the developmental trajectories of identity motives. Third, experimental paradigms should be developed and applied in future research so that causal inferences can be proposed. Finally, the neural mechanisms underlying identity motives warrant future investigation.
|Keyword||自我 动机 需要 身份认同 身份建构|
|包寒吴霜,蔡华俭,罗宇. 身份认同动机：概念、测量与心理效应[J]. 心理科学,2019,42(04):971-977.|
|MLA||包寒吴霜,et al."身份认同动机：概念、测量与心理效应".心理科学 42.04(2019):971-977.|
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